The countdown begins – 7 days to go

From today, there is only 1 week left before lift off. I still have about a million more things to do before I leave such as:

  • get a haircut
  • get some Yen
  • get my life sorted out

Unfortunately there’s not too much I can do about the last one but I should be able to get my backside up to do the the first two. I have no intention of going to a hairdresser’s within the first two or three months in Japan in case my lack of Japanese leads to an unhappy accident.

Also, with the British Pound going down faster than a plane broadcasting ‘mayday’, I’ve been trying to bide my time to get a good deal, but waiting just makes it worse and worse. By the time I get there, things in ¥100 shops (equivalent to one pound/99c stores) will cost more than well, a pound! Buddha forbid I have to pay more than a few pence for such great merchandise as:

I also need to start packing. In preparation, I’ve already bought some of the equipment I need:

1. A brand new sturdy suitcase:

International Traveller 76cm Black Expanding Trolley Case

International Traveller 76cm Black Expanding Trolley Case

…with four wheels! The suitcase moves like an upright trolley which is much easier than the ’tilt-n-pull’ types which always do my poor arms in after an hour or two of wheeling about (which will happen as I will inevitably get lost). It’s a wonder why not every suitcase is designed with four wheels, just like its a wonder we still have car doors that fly open onto the road instead of sliding ones.

2. A poor man’s DSLR camera:

Samsung WB500

As much as I would have wanted to get an actual DSLR, I decided in the end that they were way too bulky and fragile to carry around Japan with me. I needed a camera that I could easily fit into my bag and carry everywhere, then whip out in a hurry in case I see something really Japanesey pass me by.

I also wanted to take pictures of drunken karaoke nights and I have a suspicion that I won’t have the dexterity to operate complicated machinery after that fourth Southern Comfort mixer.

The Samsung WB500 seems perfect for the job. It’s a little bit bulky, but that’s because it has very good specs, with a nice 24mm ultra wide angle lens and a 10x optical zoom, which pretty much puts it in the prosumer category.

3. Adaptors:

I’ve bought two adaptors: one world one (above) since I plan to go travelling to other parts of Asia, and one specifically for UK>Japan for my laptop because they’re much smaller.

Muji offers a world adapter but (as with most things one could ever want) it costs about a tenth of the price from eBay, shipped from where else but… Hong Kong.

With only a few days left, I sense a panic attack is imminent. Actually, I could do with a a SoCo mixer right now…


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