This morning I tried to find a short cut to the train station by cutting though the small neighborhood in front of my apartment. It was easy enough to find the right way though since I just followed the crowds of salary men and students. It’s kind of the like finding a really good restaurant…follow the crowd and there’s probably something great up ahead.
So, yesterday was orientation and registration since I missed everything on Saturday. Even though we signed up for classes more than a month ago, we got a chance to sample all of the courses offered to see if they’re the right level and/or content for us. Good thing they had this too because I ended up switching one of mine. Originally, I signed up for Intensive Japanese level 3 (which is roughly third year Japanese at UW) and for the first three weeks of the program, a skill based course that involves reading research and graphs with discussion. After attending this class, I decided it just wasn’t for me and swapped it out for a conversation course (which is something I desperately need to work on). Today was the first day with classes settled and schedules finalized and everything has been fairly smooth. Waseda’s campus is massive but I think I’m finally getting the hang of where everything is (though, like Schmitz hall, the International Student’s building is sort of removed from campus and tricky to find).
As far as home life goes, I’m pretty settled into the apartment, have met a few of my neighbors, and just finished a load of laundry. I think after this week I’ll be more in the groove of things and will venture out a little more with my fellow students. So far I’ve met some really great people both from the states (3 others from UW and a few from AZ, CA and OR) as well as Singapore and Taiwanese students.