Traveling: See Japan for Cheap with the Seishun 18 Kippu

On a previous travel guide post, I mentioned some cheaper ways to travel around Japan.  One of the ways to to do this is with a Seishun 18 Kippu (read as “seishun juuhachi kippu“), that allows you 5 days of unlimited JR train access except for special expresses/shinkansen.  Granted you’ll need a lot of time to get around, but it’s great for backpackers, group travel, and hopping off random stations to explore…  Or people like me who don’t mind spending half a day or two on the train to save 40,000 yen ($400 USD) in travel costs.

© J // Washing Rice Blog

© J // Washing Rice Blog

That’s right!  I went to Gifu, Okayama, and back, and that’s about how much I saved with this ticket and choosing to by local/rapid trains instead of taking the bullet train.  My whole train fare for the trip (including another trip I took to Tokyo with a friend to see the Fushigi Yūgi play) cost me less than 10,000 yen ($100 USD) with a Seishun 18 Kippu.

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Traveling: Autumn Takes Branch in Kyoto

© J // Washing Rice Blog

Kyoto tower, the first landmark you’ll see outside of Kyoto Station.
© J // Washing Rice Blog

Mr. J and I finally got internet up and running on the 3rd, woohoo!  Over that weekend a couple of friends and I decided to take a short trip to Kyoto, since the foliage is supposed to be stunning there around this time of year.   Up until now I’d only ever visited Kyoto for training with my first company, where all I saw was my hotel room, the boardroom, and a cheap mom and pop izakaya (Japanese-style pub) down the street.  So needless to say I was pretty excited to finally have a chance to actually see the old capital after so many years!

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Sailor Moon 20th+ Anniversary, New Remake & Musicals

© Jacko W Castillo

© Jacko W Castillo

So I don’t know about any of ya’ll, but I was a total moonie growing up.  One year I went to summer school to take courses to get ahead in school, and the girl that sat at the desk next to mine first introduced me to the show.  Sadly I never saw her again after our summer courses finished, and I can’t even begin to recall her name now, but her love of Sailor Moon she shared with me that summer wove itself into my future endeavors, and is still with me today. Needless to say the anniversary had me pretty stoked!

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Making the Big Move: Furnishing Your New Home

So you’ve settled on your new pad, moved in, and now there’s empty or mostly empty walls staring back at you.  What to do?  Thankfully, you’ve got a lot of options.  Japan is home to some of the smallest living spaces in the modern world, and every year furniture and interior design companies come out with new and creative ways to make the most of your space.

If you’ve got the budget, anything is possible.  Even if you don’t, you’re not out of luck.  Here are some ways to maximize your budget when furnishing your new home:

© Hitorigurashi Interior no Zipang.com

There’s a ton of ways to work with your space no matter the size. Here’s a stylish, one room apartment set up.
© Hitorigurashi Interior no Zipang.com

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