today's already been quite educational. so far i've learned that giving money to people selling things is usually set in a tray first (and then change is given in the same tray) rather than just placing cash in their hand. i was confused as to why the guy selling bus tickets wasn't touching my money until i realized the tray. this is the reason guys! i've also found out that konbini (convenience stores) are really quite awesome, because even though they look similar to 7-11's back home, the food there is actually quite EDIBLE, and i ended up buying an onigiri for a light dinner in my room (airplane food really sucked, so i was looking forward to something more substantial). oh, and another important awesome thing i've learned about japan - going to the bathroom is an EXPERIENCE. in my hotel bathroom, there is a sign with instructions giving you directions how to set the water spray, whether you want it in the back or front, and whether you want it hot and cold. it's somewhat alarming at first but yeah! cleanliness is next to godliness... this'll probably never catch on in america...
i've met a few of the other teachers i'll be training with, one guy from england who i met on the bus, and another guy from detroit that i met at the hotel. the guy from detroit has been in japan for already a year and a half now teaching english with another company, and he provided all kinds of useful info, such as how to separate trash (very big on recycling here, and strict) and cheap good things to eat.
i can KINDA read the signs around here, because i know how to read hiragana and katakana, but with kanji i'm completely lost. so i can read parts of store signs, but not much else. i've tried reading stuff on the bus ride over, but it was pretty dark. hopefully i'll get better at this stuff as time passes.
another thing, it's not as cold as i thought it would be (thank god spring is settling in) but it is a bit sprinkly, hopefully the rain doesn't come in full force. i have a crapton of luggage and it would be a pain to move all that stuff. tomorrow i have to be ready in business attire by 9AM for training, and this'll last for 5 days. i think i'll be going to morioka over the weekend to my actual apartment.
for now, i'm pretty grateful my travels have gone quite smoothly, no bumps in the road at all. thanks universe! i already miss everyone back home, but i'm trying not to think about that too much, because there is so much to adjust to here without getting too crazy homesick.