Well, the Internet cafe I am in now is officially closed, but I talked the girl into letting me stay for an extra half an hour so I can post once more and check my e-mail one more time.
Let me just outline my plans for the upcoming week in case I don't get around to posting. Tomorrow (Sunday, the 28th) I will finish packing and try to clean out my apartment a little. I have been packing all day and should finish most of it tonight. (BTW - Scott, thanks for the call today! It was great to hear from you and a great interruption! I really needed a break at that point.)
There was a free reggae concert here in Yokosuka today that I wanted to go check out, but I have to get my packing done before anything else (except posting on blogger at the Internet Cafe!). I am going to Mass tomorrow, just barely fulfilling a promise to my mom that I would make Mass at least once while I am here.
Mr. Takahashi is coming to pick me up tomorrow night and drive me to Yokohama, where I will get on the night bus for Osaka. I have to change busses in Tokyo, then it is a straight shot to Osaka. I think we arrive at about 6:30 or 7 in the morning, at which point I will probably opt for a taxi to take me to my hotel. Unfortunately, check in isn't until about 2 in the afternoon, so hopefully they will be willing to guard my luggage while I wonder the streets in a daze from lack of sleep searching for the perfect Osaka Octopus Ball.
I have found a group of foreigners in Osaka to give me some advice on what to go do while I am there. My only real 'must-do' is to see Osaka castle. Other than that, I am going to eat a lot because I hear the food is really good and really cheap in Osaka, and maybe do a little shopping. More than anything, I am going to try to sleep at least 10 hours a day, because I have had little time for sleep during the past 3 months, and a nice hotel room that other people clean seems like the perfect place for some much needed rest.
On Thursday, September 1, I will check out and head for the airport. My plane arrives late in Taipei, so I can't make any of the commuter flights to Kaohsiung, but my contacts in Kaohsiung assure me I can take an overnight bus from the airport in Taipei to Kaohsiung, no problem. Two overnight busses in one week? Yeah!
I will arrive in Kaohsiung EARLY in the morning on September 2. My 'exchange buddy' (a student at NSYSU who is there to answer my questions and help me out) said he will meet me and help me move into my dorm then. Ken, thank you! I know I haven't met you yet, but you've already helped me out a ton. We don't have orientation for at least another week after I arrive, so I am hoping I am the first one in my dorm room. I want choice of where I am sleeping! That and I want to get a little rest and get set up before life gets busy again.
If I have time to write in Osaka, I will. Until then, pray that I have safe journeys! I promise I will do the same for you...
See you soon!