Living in Japan

(266 Posts)
mirai Fri 20-May-11 10:42:24

Hi all, not quite sure this has sunk in yet so excuse the exclamation marks! My DP has been offered a job in Japan and we are taking it! We will be going end July-mid August which isn't really very long at all. We'll be gone for at least a year but hopefully longer. I know there's so much we have to do, and organise, any tips or advice would be brilliant. Oh and one more thing we don't get to find out exactly where in Japan for another couple of weeks. I guess that just adds to the lunacy excitement.

I am a (quiet but prolific) regular but I have namechanged for good now as, well, it's a new chapter, innit! grin

TanteRose Tue 11-Mar-14 14:16:13

Remembering 3.11

TanteRose Tue 11-Mar-14 05:48:49
TanteRose Tue 11-Mar-14 05:46:05

[[http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/picturegalleries/worldnews/9131914/Japan-earthquake-and-tsunami-anniversary-30-powerful-images-of-the-disaster.html Three years ago today, this hour, devastation struck the coast of north east Japan.

15,884 people lost their lives, and three years later, 2636 people are still unaccounted for, their bodies still not returned to their families.

there are also still 270,000 evacuees, who cannot return to their homes, and workers are still battling to keep the Fukushima nuclear reactor under control.

The suffering continues
www.japantoday.com/category/national/view/children-of-fukushima-battle-an-invisible-enemy

Thinking about all those who lost their lives...and all those who continue bravely with their lives even under the most trying circumstances.

Never forgotten.

caramelwaffle Fri 20-Dec-13 23:09:22

Hello again.
Have you decided what to do?

mirai Fri 20-Dec-13 02:50:18

Catastrophise!!!! I hate this bloody phone.

mirai Fri 20-Dec-13 02:49:14

Hi caramel wow it must be early there now!

Yes, it is a huge expense and I really don't know what to do. Apparently the tradition is that the bride and groom only take half your money and spend the other half on a gift which they then give back to you. I don't want to give someone nearly £200 to buy me a random present!

I just don't know whether to stick with the present as originally planned (and blame our foreignness for not knowing the culture), or what. DH is now saying not giving the money will cause a bad feeling in the office and his contract may not be renewed. He does like to catastrophically hmm grin

caramelwaffle Fri 20-Dec-13 02:28:14

Hello Mirai
Apologies. Am not in Japan, am in Uk.

£370 sounds like a lot in any culture!

mirai Fri 20-Dec-13 02:03:49

Hello hello, I wonder if anyone is still reading? And if our expecting cohort have now safely had their DCs?

I wondered if anyone could advise on wedding etiquette. We have been invited to a colleague's wedding and had spent around £60 on a gift (plus of course the usual expense of hotels and travel etc).

Anyway DH's other colleague came up to him yesterday and told him we actually have to give money, around 60,000 yen, anything less would rude.

We are astonished!!! That's around £370 and quite apart from not actually having that kind of money to spare, was the colleague telling the truth? I thought our gift would be more than adequate but now we are panicking.

Help!!

mirai Tue 15-Oct-13 06:03:18

So the typhoon is on its way! Effects already being felt here, I was able to petition to leave work early and rather surprisingly succeeded! However they are positive the school is going to be open and running tomorrow; though I'm not sure the same will be said for our local train line! Oh well, will have to wait and see.

Hope you all take care of yourselves, my advice is to stock up on some biscuits and hot chocolate! (today was the first day I felt cold getting out of the shower!)

mirai Sun 22-Sep-13 01:19:49

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

wispaxmas Sat 14-Sep-13 17:23:39

I know the question was asked ages ago, but I lived in Japan from 2008-2010 and apparently had a contract for a USB Internet stick, even though I had though it was 18 months, apparently it was automatically extended at the end because I ticked some sort of box. Anyways, there were a few months outstanding and they tried to charge it to my expired credit card, and I had to dispute it. I disputed it with the credit card company and the charges were cancelled because the company couldn't prove they should have been charging me, as I had written to them to cancel the damn thing.

I know it's not quite the same thing, but I don't think it can effect you legally when returning to Japan!

(Sorry to pop in like this, but also I want to say that I completely understand the loneliness, mirai. Being a foreigner in a place like Japan can be very difficult, and sometimes even with all the support of a tightly knit expat community you just want to go home. It's why I went back to Canada in 2010!)

mirai Fri 13-Sep-13 07:00:48

Smear test resulted translated and all is good.

Today I just feel so lonely. If DH said "let's go back home" today, I would say yes. :'(

mirai Mon 09-Sep-13 02:47:53

Hmm does anyone know how to read my smear test results? I tried sending them to the organisation that helped me book the smear in the first place but they said they are not able/allowed to translate the results as that`s classed as giving a diagnosis which can only be done by a physician hmm . There are six boxes and five end with `nashi` which I`m guessing is good, but we can`t work out the kanji for the other one. Any tips? smile

mirai Sat 31-Aug-13 06:35:15

Ahhh the end of the summer holidays, how quickly then went! I am looking forward to some cooler weather though, without a doubt.

Tante, you must be back from the uk now, how was it, did you have fun?

Hooya hello, you must have just finished work now, congratulations! I know what you mean about the rganised fun, we went to a music festival a few weeks ago, NOTHING LIKE UK festivals, everything was so organised it took the fun out of it a little bit. Still had a good time though smile

Hooya Sun 04-Aug-13 11:42:36

Hello everyone, thought I'd say hi after mirai kindly reminded me about this thread!

I've been very busy as I'm now 34 weeks pregnant grin and finishing work in 3 weeks so just working like a crazy person and sweltering in the Tokyo summer!

Went to Shimoda for the last couple of days and so amused at Japanese beach behaviour! They are so prepared, everyone rocks up with a tent to protect them from the sun, several camp chairs, a massive cool box full of drinks, huge picnic, etc etc smile

Sorry I can't help re mobile phone contracts, I only just finally got one 6 months ago having lived here a couple years!

I'd be up for a meetup subject to timings with work and babyHooya!

mirai Fri 02-Aug-13 10:17:19

Let's enkai! wine

Who's up for a meet in August??

BadLad Wed 31-Jul-13 16:02:11

I don't know if/how any information about unpaid bills is passed to the authorities here

For mobile phones, it isn't (touches wood).

When I finished with docomo, they sent me a final bill, which I paid, although it was unusually low. Then a couple of months later, they sent a new bill for the difference, which I paid reluctantly.

Then they sent me a bill for late payment, on the grounds that I was two months late settling my bill

And about five reminders when I ignored the late payment demand.

Two years on, they seem to have given up.

mirai Sat 27-Jul-13 04:47:16

I would like to point out we never used our phones on the hol, we had them turned on but all data and 3G etc was turned off... But it turns out they charge you £20 a day just to connect to a foreign network even if nary a call or text is sent or received!! shock

mirai Sat 27-Jul-13 04:45:46

SoftBank do have an English line and when we racked up loads on a foreign holiday they were very good to us and wrote off most of the bill! So you might get lucky. I'll be back in a few days so let us know how you get on!!

ForgetfulNameChanger Fri 26-Jul-13 15:11:20

Hi mirai!

Oh dear, that two year contract does ring a bell! I vaguely remember us all discussing how we would pay off the final year of it if we had returned to the UK. Oh no sad

I think we were with Softbank. I don't have the money to pay them back at the moment but want to because its a horrible feeling having this potential mystery debt hanging over me abroad haha! Thank you for the advice, I didn't think about actually contacting them doh! I will look into whether they have an English line and see if I can speak to someone. If its only Japanese, I'm buggered for now as I can only remember the basics eek!

Hopefully if I get it sorted I won't be banned or blacklisted in someway. I would love to take dd there when she is older so will be gutted if my bad memory has fudged that sad thank you for offering to do research for me smile that's really kind. Hope you are enjoying your hols!

mirai Fri 26-Jul-13 12:43:44

Hi forgetful!

Which phone company were you with? The reason I ask is in all my research both before and since moving to Japan, I found one year contracts impossible to find. They were all two year ones. So, if you're sure it wasnt a 2 year one the. you might have actually had a prepay plan or something like that, in which case you should be fine.

If it was the case that you did have money owing, would you be prepared/able to pay it back, eg using a debit card over the phone? The phone companies tend to have English speaking helplines so that could be one option.

I don't know if/how any information about unpaid bills is passed to the authorities here; I know it would e a problem if you had money owing for pension or healthcare for example but I'm not sure about debts to private companies. First though I'd find out exactly if you do have money owing and how much, and then take it from there. I'm on hols at the mo but happy to do some research on your behalf when I'm back next week!

ForgetfulNameChanger Thu 25-Jul-13 21:00:37

Hi everyone! I posted this in chat but was advised that posting here might be a good idea too! smile

I lived in Japan for four months a couple of years back and came home for Christmas with the plan to return in the new year but I got ill and couldn't go back. At the time my mind wasn't on Japan or any of my obligations I'd left there so I never chased up any loose ends. I just realised the other day that I had a 12 month phone contract for a mobile and obviously, the phone stayed with me in the UK and I didn't pay for the last eight months. Does this mean I have an outstanding debt over there? Will this affect any holidays or opportunities of living there in the future? Will I be banned from Japan? How can I fix it?

Thanks smile

apibeeman Thu 25-Jul-13 08:58:35

I spent two years there and loved every minute. The food, takes a bit of getting used to but very soon get to love it. Work was fantastic, everybody so nice and polite.
Just don't mention the war, can easily get into something you wish you had never started. Take your Kindle with you or better still buy one out there, all the electronic things are much cheaper and more up to date out there, if you are not going to be working make sure you have plenty to do, there are lots of nice places to visit. Wish I was going back.

BadLad Wed 17-Jul-13 04:28:27

There is no middle ground regarding discipline of children in Japan. It either takes the form of beating the shit out of them, or pleading with them to stop doing whatever it is they're doing wrong.

Not always, but I have seen both extremes far too often.

mirai Wed 17-Jul-13 01:07:15

Back at the horrible school again today. Hating it. I swear I will never speak to or even look at that teacher again.

If anyone fancies organising a MN meet up to take my mind off it today then that would be good! grin wine

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