Since I’m sure that you’ve all been waiting with bated breath to find out about my job search... I have a couple of short-term contracts which will take me up to mid-December and pay very well. I’ll be teaching English at a couple of companies on two—possibly three—nights a week, and from next month (i.e. October) I’m going to be busy Monday-Friday working at a junior high school. That may be for five or ten weeks; it’s not clear yet, but I am hoping to find out by next Monday.

I have found myself a flat, and I’ll be moving in on September 29th. It’s conveniently situated, quite near where I am staying now. It’s a little expensive, but that’s unsurprising for Japan. The good thing is that all the utilities are included in the price. No need to turn off my computer any more! One utility unfortunately not included is internet service. I’m still considering whether to go for 128 kbit unmetered wireless internet service (advantages: use it anywhere, no installation fee) or a fixed-line service such as ADSL or optical fibre (advantage: very fast; disadvantage: costs a lot to get started). I’m still not sure which to go for. I can easily borrow an ADSL link when I need to do some heavy downloads, so the wireless service might be enough. But on the other hand, I’m rather addicted to fast connections now!

I did some more bargain shopping today. I don’t think I’ve bought anything at full price since I’ve come to Japan! Today’s find: a second-hand 5-port Ethernet hub. It’s only 10 Mbit, but it is exactly what I wanted. I am using it to share an 8 Mbit ADSL connection over two computers, which it does excellently. The price I paid for it was JPY 480 (about EUR 5). Not bad at all.

I was browsing some of the links on today and came across this page about forbidden words in MSN user names. I decided to sign up for yet another Hotmail account, and look what a great username I managed to get! (33 kb GIF image file) Warning: do not view if easily offended!

It’s forecast to get cooler here in Osaka from next week, and I can’t wait. 35C heat is bad enough; when I have to wear a suit it’s unbearable! My shirt was totally saturated after a ten-minute walk outdoors the other day. Most places have air conditioning—it’s getting between them that is the killer. I wish that someone could make a jacket with some kind of refrigeration. One of those big puffer jackets would be great—you could walk around in the blistering heat in your own private 20C air-conditioned comfort zone. I sometimes miss the overcast skies and dingy weather of Northern Europe...