Average Hours Spent working: about half of that.
The rest of the time? Socializing and using the internet. Talking to JKim online, too, cause she’s not that busy looking at birds’ brains.
Written June 10, 2009 at 9:08pm
I’m still in lab considering going home soon, but I’m waiting until my mom wakes up in Puerto Rico (it’s now 8am there) so I can call her through Skype. You have to keep in mind, folks, that I only have internet access at work or by paying at the internet café. I can find random wireless connections that are not protected, but those I can only use if the signal is strong enough, and my laptop’s battery only lasts for less than an hour before it runs out. The other option I have is to use a random internet connection that I found behind my apartment and talk through Skype on my iPhone, but the only problem I have with that is that sometimes the connection is weak and the call can drop.
That being said, today was a good day. I got to lab at around 10:30am because I was tired and slept a bit longer in the morning. Then, at around 11:30am, ‘Crazy’-San came over and asked me if I was ready for lunch. At around 12pm we headed in a group to lunch. The group was ‘King’-san, ‘Crazy’-san, ‘Boot’-san, ‘Masaya’-san, and me. Remember that most of their nicknames were created or decided by me.
Anyway, we had lunch and Crazy-san actually paid for my lunch. I thought that was really sweet of her. It was a welcoming lunch, I’ve had my lunch paid for by others twice since I got to Japan! The lunch was delicious, and as usual cheap. We talked a lot and I got many things explained to me in English or in Japanese, and I explained many things to them too. They are interested in practicing and learning English, which is fun. They are all so nice, I like them a lot.
In the afternoon, at around 4pm, we headed down to a lecture room to have a presentation on “How to publish to Nature Journal” by the Executive Editor. It was a nice talk, and I took a lot of notes cause I knew many of the Japanese researchers would be reading the slides and not really understanding what she was saying. I took many notes and copied them to my computer so they can read them. At around 7:30pm I asked ‘crazy’-san if she had eaten dinner already, and she hadn’t, so we made a small group and had dinner together. This time ‘King’-san and ‘Masaya’-san couldn’t join us cause they were busy, but ‘Macho’-san joined us. That nickname, Macho-san, I didn’t make up. ‘Crazy’-san made it up. For dinner we all headed down to the convenience store and bought little meals and had that for dinner in the seminar room. It was all good, and we talked a lot and made fun of each other, especially of ‘Crazy’-san.
Some other things I’ve noticed of Japanese people, they sleep a lot on their train ride home, and many people take naps in lab cause we’re here 12+ hours a day. Also, the slot machines and arcades are open since 9:30am, which I find weird. The Japanese are fun, I like them, and they ask me a lot of questions. They also seem quite interested in knowing more about the things I do, etc. They are easily surprised by people who can speak Japanese.
Also, they have a lot of delicious drinks in their vending machines. Yesterday night I tried cold tea with milk and it was really good. I am getting another one of those on my way back home tonight, for sure. 🙂
Oh, and the board with magnets that we use to indicate if we’re in lab or not is organized by seniority. I go above the secretary according to that board. She is, however, obviously much more important and respected than what the board says, after all she’s been in this lab since it started pretty much.
Update: I went home at around 10:00pm and called my mom at around 10:45pm through Skype on my iPhone. After that instead of going to bed I talked to Sharps-san from MIT until 1am and then went to bed. Great, right? 🙂