ben griffiths
an insight into the mind of a genius

Archive for January, 2006

And then there was heat!

Friday, January 13th, 2006

Big changes in the house today, I was awoken by the sound of the doorbell at about 10:30am (which was good as I didn’t want to oversleep) and then loads and loads of noise.

It was so cold, I didn’t really want to get up and look, however i could see a number of shapes moving around in the front room through the glass. After about 30 minutes, all was quiet again, so I snuck my head outside…

WOW! I should have taken a photo, but basically, the front room was full of many household items, a massive TV, DVD, microwave, chairs, tables, computers, blenders …. and the list goes on…

It seems Seiko and Shiho had raided their fathers house!

Also included was a new Halogen heater (so I can give you that money back now dad) which is great, as we have been having big problems with the aircon (it keeps tripping the power) - there is a slight problem in that it’s permanently pointing out the floor, though I’m sure i can work out how to move it up without breaking it at some point…

Japanese school hasn’t got off to such a great start, after missing Wednesday, I had looked over the work to do in this morning. However yesterday at work, Usukei (or however you spell it) - had another go at Yumi which sent her off in a flood of tears… so after work, instead of going home, we went out to a restaurant and had some drinks to cheer her up.

Upshot is of course, I missed Japanese. BUT, I told her this would happen, so she is willing to make up for it by going over the stuff I have missed (and doing it properly this time :)) - not all bad.

I’m also liking Mum’s idea of meeting up with Nagisa often whilst I am back, it will work well, she has loads of free time, so we can meet - and then later I can go home / Gowry’s / out with Haroon etc…. I actually hope to get more studying done in England than I have done so far out here :) hahaha….

So the room swap, it would be tonite, however a big issue has come up at work. I have to work Saturday as a swap, BUT, the kids teacher won’t be in :eek: This means I have to teach all her classes, no mean feat as I haven’t had any decent practise yet - so they are letting me take the books home tonite, so basically i will be studything these - no time to do anything else.

I guess I will move on Sunday - but the good thing is, now Seiko’s computer is here, we have to get a router (so we can share the connection) which means I can carry the laptop around the house (so will be able to sit in the front room with them :)) - I really like both of them, so want to make a big effort to spend more time together.

I had a meeting at work the other day too - which wasn’t so good - I was basically told that me being late the other day was like committing “work suicide” during your probation period…. with this in mind, I made a huge effort for my evaluation yesterday and made a list of all my issues - which Tony then looked over and agreed on - I’m fed up of being told things too late to do anything about them, so this way I have come back….

My main issue has been avoiding the lessons altogether and just chatting - well, the students wanted to, so I figured it would be ok. Aparently not though, and this is the biggest issue…. easy enough to solve, just, NEED TO BE TOLD ABOUT IT …. grrrr…

Sorry, I’ve gone off on a right tangent there - and now I can’t remember what the hell I have written … lol … thats what only having 8 hours sleep does to you ;)
Well today is friday and tomorrow ISN’T my weekend - haha - i think that’s all that needs to be said ;) Saturday night will be my night out, so expect some more photos then ….. Atom is calling me…. ;)


Tuesday, January 10th, 2006

Mmmm.. i am now sitting at my computer eating huge chunks of the special cheddar cheese sent to me for christmas along with a few fingers of a kit kat - i must say, they go together quite well! Yummy …!

Well that was quite a story last time hey? Actually looking back, it’s quite funny - just a shame it stuffed up my weekend as now being back and working this 7 day week is just horrible.

I could go on and write loads more, but, I don’t want to - perhaps all that is just a memory best forgotten.

Sunday, as I had already mentioned, I had to work to cover shift swapping for my holiday. I had never worked a weekend before, but was told they were always really busy. To make matters worse, you can’t go in any earlier to prepare as the staff don’t get in until 9:30 :eek: (work begins at 10)

Even worse, the night before had been so cold (and we are talking proper freezing) - I had been unable to get much sleep at all and walking to work, I was just in a daze. To try and counter this (and because for once I was up early enough) i headed straight for the local McDonalds to pick up and Sausage and Egg McMuffin - so mum, you can be happy I have had breakfast for once!!!

The weekends are the busiest days at Nova (hence the reason I have never wanted to work them) - and it seemed today was no exception. My first class was a full 4 person, but luckily for me, a lower level - which I really enjoy teaching, so it wasn’t too tough :D
The rest of the lessons went ok, but by lunch I was really grateful for the break. Not really much of a break though as of couse I had to plan all the next lessons, so sat with a yaki soba balanced on my knee, trying to write up all the next reports!

My final class of the day was voice - which was nice as by then i was getting quite tired - and as usual, the topic turned to how much I think Japanese food sucks over western food :) However, this time it was a bit more productive as the students seemed to know quite a few BBQ buffet places, so by the end of the lesson I had quite a comprehensive map of places I should try.

Even better, one of them is only a few minutes from work - and offers drinks for 1000yen (£5) for drink as much as you can for 2 hours!! They offer the same with their menu too, but this is a little more expensive at 3000yen for a 2 hour eatathon. I think I should definately try it though, make the most of the time here :) Haha….

I was so glad when I finally reached the end of the day and was able to stagger home, though only an hour or so after arriving home, I had a call from Shimpei who needed some help with some translation. Usually I would have said I am too tired, but i felt obliged to help as he has been so good to me.

I was just about to leave when Yumi showed up though! Apparently Seiko was coming back and she had asked to see her so she could give her a present from her weekend away. I still wasn’t sure if I was ready to see Seiko yet, but couldn’t leave Yumi on her own in the place, so called Shimpei.

It turned out however that Seiko was at Shimpei’s already, so we could all go around there…. he also said he had talked to Seiko and she wanted to meet up….

So it was on….

The upshot of everything is, we are swapping rooms…. which you would think is a great situation - but, I just can’t stop feeling guilty about it :( I feel like perhaps she feels bullied into it (as in, “Ben will go back to the UK unless you move”) - they keep telling me not to feel bad, but it’s not helping….

I also feel bad about her having to pay so much more rent than me (£150) - but I really cannot offer any more - so, I figured maybe I could do extra things around the house to help out - such as do the floor cleaning, or the laundry (though according to Gowry, it’s not the done thing to wash a girls laundry unless she is your g/f? I don’t know, i’m not sure I see the problem) - so this will make me feel a bit better, as I will be putting more input in?

So yes, the room move will be next friday - I will miss the sunshine and daylight :( but i guess it will solve all the other problems. Infact, maybe this will encourage me to spend less time on the computer!! The other issue might be that next to my room now will be another bedroom, so saturday night late music might cause issues, but i suppose that can be dealt with when the issue arrises - in the meantime, i’ll just have to keep it low on weekdays.

I also told Seiko that i was sad i never see much of her, i came to live with her in Tokyo, but only see her a few times a week at most. We are now going to make the effort to see more of each other and have bought a calendar for the kitchen so we can see who is free when - thus being able to plan to meet up and stuff around those times. Admittedly me working until 9pm each evening doesn’t help, but I am right next to the station, so on Mon + Wed nights we can definately start to do more things (I have school on Wednesday at 9am you see, so the other nights are no use).

Talking of Japanese school, it starts tomorrow which will be good, though i reckon i will get a right bashing for now having learnt as much as i should have - though now I have finally got all my computer work out the way, i have a lot more time for it - there is a bit of a mutiny going on the forums, but hopefully we can sort all of this out without too many casualties.

Sorry if this is a bit rushed, but I’ve got work in 10 minutes, but didn’t want to leave anything any longer less I forget, so in summary:

1) I’m moving room
2) Seiko and I are going to spend more time together
3) I hate working weekends :p 4) Cheddar Cheese + KitKat is most delicious

What was I thinking…

Saturday, January 7th, 2006

So tonite was my weekend, due to having to work on Sunday. I finished work early which was good, so had intended to come home and work more on the site, hoping to have it finally finished, so I could release the new plans to the public.

This didn’t go quite to plan though as some other matters came up, but in reality, this is irrelevant as I was still happy :)
Seiko finished work at 10 or so and was then coming home, before we were both going to go out. At 11 o’clock (or maybe 10:30, not sure) she came home absolutely trashed :eek: - this of course was bad enough in itself, except she had brought someone else home - a big Japanese army guy, who she claimed not to know?!?!?

They were both quite drunk and he was trying to say something, but I didn’t have a clue and wished really he would just f*ck off as I knew by now I wouldn’t be going out, so just wanted some peace and quiet to get on with things. He then proceeded to keep taking me by the hand and dancing with me, in that stupid drunk way everyone does… I just was hoping Seiko would go to her room or something.

Seiko however had other ideas and opened up 2 (yes 2) bottles of wine, which the then poured out (and all over the kitchen) - oh and I’ll point out, it was red wine….

They asked me over to drink with them, so figured one would be ok. However as I was standing in the corner trying to get the cork off the corkscrew, the guy kept grabbing me, and then groping my arse….? Assuming he was just drunk and trying not to fall over (how naive am i) - i ignored it, however he then asked Seiko did I have a girlfriend, and when I said yes, he got down on his knee and proclaimed he was really jealous - ok, so now those warning bells were ringing….

Not really too much time to think about it though as by now Seiko had swung her arms around and thrown red wine all over the wall and floor! I started to mop it, at which point matey thought best to help my hands along :eek:
I now decided it would just be best to try and ignore them, so went across the room to the computer and pretended to be on the phone. This kinda worked, but I could see in the background Seiko had opened another bottle of wine?!?!

There’s no point me going into detail here, but for the next hour or so, cue just noise and them just coming in my room and rolling on the bed and stuff… including the guy starting to try on all my clothes, then takign my new jumper and dragging himself along the floor all around the apartment in it? No wait, Seiko gave him the jumper, yes thats right - she took it and gave it to him, then he started to roll around the floor in it.

Damnit, I’m so angry - I bet this writing is terrible - but at least it’s written with passion :D
So finally Seiko passes out, so I assumed the guy would leave, but no, he just sits in the frontroom and starts going through my Japanese folder. I dont know what to do now, i just want him gone, but it’s obvious he’s not going to.

So I keep typing, when wham! He has opened up Seikos packet of salmon (like the whole thing) and thrown it onto my bed!?! Like WHAT THE F*CK?!?

I ring Shimpei to ask him what to do, but I guess in reality there was nothing he could do - he did offer to speak to the guy, but i wasn’t so sure this would be a good idea…..

You know, there was like loads more, but I’m so angry I can’t fully remember - the upshot was, as soon as he finally left the room, I turned off all the lights - he came back in, sat around talking to himself for sometime and now has finally left.

However - I now have another god damn dilema - if Seiko doesn’t know who he is, surely he shouldn’t be sleeping with her?!? I don’t know, I jsut don’t know - she also is supposed to be up early tomorrow to go on some boat cruise somewhere, so what will happen to him?!!??

This is insane.

Just when things were starting to get better - but now I just think, “I came to Tokyo for Seiko and so far she has f*cked up my house, f*cked up my new year (which was a big BIG deal to me, though i didn’t show it, whats the point) and now there’s these other issues with her just getting trashed - I could have taken JET, been earning £19k a year and have access to loads of Japanese people…. but I turned it down to be with her, and its just not getting me anywhere….

Helen, I apologise for ever having any problems with you - now I have found Seiko, you are just like a little angel :D
I will read over this again in the morning, see if I have missed anything, but now I just want to go to bed - try and forget it ever happened. And then begin my 7 day week….. fantastic - thanks a lot.


Friday, January 6th, 2006

Just a short post now as it’s freezing and I want to go to bed, but moving on the news from yesterday about the new server…


I’ve now broken even :D woot! Only a day and already in profit..

God dammit!

Thursday, January 5th, 2006

I’ve gone and done it again, made the mistake of thinking “oh I see that blade looks a little worn, but I’ll use it anyway” - result, I look like someone has used me as a pin cushion…. doh!

That’s two stupid things in as many days…. I know you are impatient dad, so I will jump straight to it.

So yesterday was the first day back at work, but my Japanese school doesn’t start until next Wednesday, so I stayed up until about 4am talking to Gowry. Actually, thinking about it, that’s quite irrelevant as I still woke up on time, erm, anyway, I’m starting to stray from the point ….

So I wake up at 12 and get on with some work (suddenly I see to have become the busiest I have ever been…), happily typing along until about 2pm when the phone rings:

Me: Hello
Them: Hello Ben, this is Haruna (from work) - I didn’t wake you up?
Me: No, I had just got up :) Haruna: Well happy new year!
Me: Erm, yes, Happy new year!
Haruna: So where are you now?
Me: At home

* Pause *

Haruna: But you start at 2:15 today…..

DOH DOH DOH! I had checked over and over my papers the night before to see if there was a scheduled time change, but couldn’t find one - so was a little confused. Anyway, to cut a long story short, I had to dash as fast as I could (including having my shower and getting dressed) to make it to work for the second lesson (3:10).

When I got it, all was explained, Nova had different new year opening times (which were displayed on the board in early December) - but due to it not being a shift swap as such, no paperwork was given out….

Nuts…. the worst thing is, you don’t just lose the money for the lesson missed, but also another 2!!! So I had to work 4 lessons, but only got paid for 2 :( :eek:

Anyway, so dad that was the stupid thing I did that I told you in the email.

The plus side of starting early of course means you finish early (woot!) - 6:30 to be precise (though I had to stay until 7 to wait for Yumi), I passed the time by sleeping on the desk :D
Over here, McDonalds seem to release a new burger every week, and this one was no exception. I’m not sure what it’s called, but it has big mushrooms in it…. ah, so nice, the sauce is rather pleasant too :)
Tonite was also special in the fact everyone was home, and Yumi was coming around so Seiko and Shiho cooked some very nice chicken and a big salad. For people that like green vegetables, you should come here… You won’t believe the “greeness” of them, they look soooo fresh. For example, the brocolli is not dull like English brocolli, but all nice (and almost fake) looking…

I’ll get a photo next time I have the chance.

The rest of the night I spend working on my new business venture. A fantastic offer came up the other day on a new server (and we are talking TOO good to miss) which I just had to snap up. Thus all night was spent getting it ready for use by the general public.

I hear a load of you shouting “but he hasn’t got any money” - well yes, but this is 1) on credit card :p and 2) will be making profit within the next 2 weeks!!!! Basically, it involves splitting this new server up into 8 parts and putting them out for silly money, just to sell them. Whilst this might not seem like the best way to make money, after 2 sales the server is already in profit!!! Sell all 8 blocks and this server pays for itself AND the main server!!! I thank you ;)
Also makes the company look good, we’re up to 3 now - I wonder how long until the next one comes along. There’s another idea I’ve got brewing, which will require some pretty heavy promotion in the UK when I get back, but then, I will have enough free time :D
Speaking of which, I only have a bit left until work and I need to finish securing a few things….. tonite I think will be uneventful, but due to me working Sunday, Friday night is going to be my weekly night out!!!

Now, off to get some new razor blades :D