I’ve meant to come back and post about all the things that I’ve been doing, but I’m not too good with multi-tasking… Whenever I’m too concentrated on one thing, I don’t want to spread myself out to do other things.
Anyway, after my last post and my last day at Yahoo!, I flew back to Seattle and stayed for a couple of months. Our family house was still there with no one living in it, so my mom and I went back to pack everything up and put it on the market. I don’t know if you’ve ever tried to move from a home of more than 15 years, but I can tell you it’s no fun at all! How I wished DragonBall’s Capsule Corp. was real… LOL.
While I was in Seattle, I continued to communicate with my friends at cuusoo.com and refine my research plan. (I’ll post it on here later.) I also emailed the Graduate School of Interdisciplinary Information Studies at the University of Tokyo to clarify about the research plan and the “Supervising Faculty of Choice”. You have to fill out that field on your research plan, but it seems that you don’t have to contact the professor beforehand. I sent 3 emails to 3 different faculty members, only the 1st one returned my email, the rests simply ignored me. (I sent the email in Japanese too! I’ll also post that here later.)
Another requirement was the “Japanese Language Proficiency Level” form, which I needed to find a teacher to administer some sort of test to me. This turned out to be a lot harder than I originally thought! No one at the University of Washington’s Japanese department could do that for me. In the end, I went back and contacted Yamada Keiko in New York, whom I had gotten a last minute crash course from back then for the interview of the position at Yahoo Japan. She gave me the sample JLPT Level 2 test, which was pretty tough! There are 4 levels, with level 1 being the toughest. I haven’t been doing any studying at all for the past 2 months in Seattle, so I was really surprised that I still almost passed the test!
Back in New York, my mom came and stayed at my sister’s place for about a month… during that time, she looked at a few condo’s with my sister. Admittedly, the housing market is on shaky grounds in the US right now… but it seems like it’s not affecting New York City at all! In the end, I showed my mom the condo that Queenie and I were going to buy… it’s a brand new 600 sq. ft. 1 bed 1 bath with a fairly large private basement storage with washer and dryer, conveniently located on 32nd Street near 30th Ave in Astoria. There are only 8 units in the 4 stories building, and we already put a deposit on the unit on the 3rd floor facing the back. My mom ended up paying the same price as us and got the unit facing the front, so together we now own the entire 3rd floor. Buying real estates in NYC have so many hidden costs! May be I should write about that too another time.
Then, in less than a month’s time, we had to pack up and move everything in our apartment into storage, coz we had to fly to Hong Kong to prepare for our wedding. I’m in Hong Kong now, just finished my final research plan and had my sister send the package for me to Tokyo U. I won’t know the results until December. In the meantime, I’ll start my next project while I’m in Hong Kong.