Go (game)

Yesterday in Japanese club I was able to play some of a game of Go. I say some because the game can take several hours, and when you have a bunch of novices who are unsure of the rules the turns can understandably take a while. Still, I appreciated Professor Frydman bringing the board and letting us play. Playing made… Read more →

Start of Japanese club

Japanese club is timed a little unfortunately this year. It starts during my Japanese┬áhistory class, but at least i am able to head over there right after class and get some club time in. It seems more organized this year, with announcements every meeting, talks about the JLPT, and developing communication with OSU’s Japanese club. Bonus: they had food the… Read more →

Zao Onsen-surprise

So Japan has a week long break called golden week, during which I thought it would be a great idea to work at a hot spring close to Yamagata. The weirdness of the experience starts with the ease at which the job was attained: I called the number on the card I picked up when my culture class visited the… Read more →


Language classes are similar here in Japan, but with a more high school-lean. Generally, we meet once a week to take a quiz and learn new grammar/vocabulary, then get homework to turn in the next week. Lessons are almost entirely in Japanese, which is nice, but the actual content is pretty simple so it doesn’t feel like I am learning… Read more →

Still want to do

One downside of the way school works here in Japan, and which is particularly relevant in a secluded place like Yamagata, is that there are not very many breaks. Aside from golden week, the devouring of which deserves its own post, the first holiday will be the 17th of July. Most days of class are not too intensive, but the… Read more →

Starting to acclimate

In recent weeks, it appears I have finally started to settle in to Yamagata. Classes have fallen into a regular pattern, weekends have become less hectic, and favorite spots have been established. Top of the last list is Yamonosuke, a ramen shop another exchange student took me to. It is far and away the best ramen I have eaten in… Read more →


So one distinctly Japanese thing that I was quickly introduced to was Karaoke boxes. These are private rooms that you rent out, alone or in a group, that have a audio system installed. This includes 2 microphones to sing into, a screen that plays music videos, and a little tablet device with a list of songs to choose from. The… Read more →

Yamagata: thoughts

So after being in Yamagata City, Japan for a little bit, I think I have developed enough of an opinion to write about it. First off, I would like to say that the comments I heard about it being a small city were exaggerated. It might indeed be small by Japan standards, but compared to Norman its a veritable metropolis.… Read more →