Language exchange is a method of language learning based on mutual language practicing by learning partners who are speakers of different languages.

Today was a good day. First, I went to a cafe to do language exchange with a lovely Japanese girl I have just gotten to know. Believe it or not, Japanese people wanting to learn Norwegian do exist in Tokyo, but they are few and far between. We talked in a strange mix of Japanese, Norwegian and some English when neither of us could explain what we meant in the two first languages. I found it incredibly useful to actually just talk freely to someone Japanese instead of in the classroom, at least I always manage to say more in such a free situation than what I thought I would be able to do. It must have sounded funny to the people around us in the cafe – my messed up Japanese, followed by some English explanations, mixed in with a couple of Norwegian phrases.

I love how everyone have aloe vera growing in little pots outside their houses.

And then I decided to walk back into Shinjuku (新宿), here coming close to Kabukichō (歌舞伎町).

Kabukichō is just a sweet mess of host- and hostess-bars, restaurants and adult entertainment, and of course a ton of love-hotels towards the Shin-Okubo area. It is quite charming in its own busy, strange and peculiar way.

And then I went to Muji – Japan’s answer to IKEA. I was a good girl and did not spend my money in there today.

But I looked at all the pretty sparkly things.

And all the restaurants I have never eaten at…

I passed this store, because I was heading to…

Marui! They have a cute shopping center for the.. eh.. specially interested. They have a whole floor of Lolita goods, one floor of princess goods, one floor of punk and a quite a few other floors filled with mori-fashion and other cute things. I am not particularly into those fashions, but I went to look for some makeup and hair-accessories. This is from the escalator – you are, as always, not allowed to take pictures inside the stores, but I shot this one from my hip because I thought the walls were cute.

And then I went to H&M, and was really lucky in my bargain hunt. Full price for above items: 5100円. What I paid: 600円.

And last, but not least, I went to Sekaido like a good girl and bought notebooks for school. I like to trick my brain into thinking that classes are even more interesting than what they are by buying new notebooks and plastic folders for each term. Oh the joys of new stationery ♥

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  1. tippi+ella says:

    I love Muji! <3

    And that sounds like an interesting way of practicing language, to speak with someone who is interested in learning *your* language too.

    Also, I love all the pictures you are posting from Tokyo and getting a sense of what your life is like there.

    • Sushi Bird says:

      I have this love/hate relationship with Muji. I want to love their stationary, pens and paper, but I don’t like them much. I do love their interior-things though, clean and beautiful and looks a bit like smaller versions of IKEA-furniture.

  2. Era says:

    I love how the electric wires in Tokyo (and a lot of other Asian cities) are just a huge spaghetti mess. Screw keeping things tidy; shortest route wiring for the win!

    New stationary is always fun, but I mostly take notes on my laptop these days. A laptop which is now having some issues and being sent to repair, so I’m probably gonna be without internet access for a little while… :(

    I also had this completely random urge to get sushi the other day, and I don’t even like sushi! I’m gonna blame that on you and your delicious-looking pictures. I’m guessing it’s sort of like with coffee though… Didn’t like that before either, but grew used to it.

    • Sushi Bird says:

      I hear you about the spaghetti. I can not understand how people don’t get killed daily with the mess the wires are in. Surely some of them must just fall down and electrocute someone on a semi-weekly basis at least? & about laptops; like everything else in this country – our desks are small and not suited for a laptop at all – so good old paper will probably do the job better for me + I have to write the Japanese to get better at it, and writing it on a computer is complete cheating, since the computer gives you drop-down lists for all the kanji and you only have to recognize them and not recall them from memory. And yes, Fiskeridepartementet should totally hire me to do marketing for them, convincing so many people that sushi is the way to eternal happiness.

      Good luck with your computer, I hope it gets well soon!

    • Era says:

      Learning languages are always better on paper, I agree. But how do you keep your site updated this often without a laptop? Surely, if the desks are too small for even a laptop, they’d have no room for a regular computer? Unless there’s a designated place in the appartment for it, of course.

      I have yet to find a nice sushi place to go to in Oslo (haven’t really been looking, though), but if or when I do, I’ll be sure to slip them your name – maybe you can get percentages! ^^

      And thank you! The repair people actually called me today, asking if I had sent my computer yet. They were THAT eager to repair it! That has to be good.

      …I think?

      • Sushi Bird says:

        Oh, I have a laptop! I just don’t bring it to school. If I have some extra time, I will make a bunch of posts and schedule them to be posted, but lately I haven’t had that kind of time, so I just upload and post as I go :)

        In Oslo – if you have a bit of money – I have two recommendations :)
        1. Alex Sushi: http://www.alexsushi.no/ I think the quality is really nice at this place!
        2. Nodee: http://www.nodee.no/ It is great for Asian fusion, so if you are not sure about eating a full sushi meal, maybe this place can be cool to check out, because they have lots of other things as well as some very creative and original sushi rolls :)

  3. omg, I would love to visit the Marui! Sounds like a place I would never want to leave :3

    • Sushi Bird says:

      I would probably have to shoot you with a tranquilizer gun and drag you out by your dreads. ;) In all seriousness though – it is interesting just walking around in stores like that, so far from everything else anyone else would define as high-fashion.