Living in Iwakura

I don’t think I’ve written much about the place I’m staying at the moment, so before I go any further I’ll tell you a bit about Iwakura! Well it’s on the Northern Edge of Kyoto, surrounded by mountains and forrest. It may seem a little far out from the city on a map, but really the subway only takes about 20 minutes to get way downtown to Kyoto Station, and the area is so calm and scenic and peaceful I really couldn’t imagine living anywhere else, especially as a student! It’s far enough away from the city to avoid too much distraction, and the dorm I’m living in is conveniently located only a 10-minute walk away from my university. It has all the essentials, such as convenience stores, grocery stores, parks, home-ware and gardening shops, bakeries, cafes, restaurants (there’s a great Indian curry place near the subway station!), and many more places worth noting.
Here are some photos around Iwakura!

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Just outside the dormitory

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The Eiden line line train runs straight past the dorms and the school.Iwakura_20130410_01057

This little guy and others like him guard the streets. I call them “The Iwakura Watch”.
Iwakura_20130410_013615 Iwakura_20130410_014518 Iwakura_20130410_015321Iwakura_20130410_015422 Iwakura_20130410_015623These were from back in early April during hanami (cherry blossom season). This is the river that runs down to the Kokusaikaikan subway station. I walk or ride my bike past it almost everyday. Such a lovely spot. The crickets have begun chirping at night now too! I feel like I’m living in an anime… The area reminds me of some of the scenes in Niea_7.Iwakura_20130410_016726I’m not a creep I swear! These kids were just too darn adorable!
Iwakura_20130410_017430 Some flowers I found in a parking lot… of all places…Iwakura_20130410_017931 The main business area of the town. It’s always a little busier around here, and there are plenty of restaurants!Iwakura_20130410_018332Iwakura_20130410_018533 Iwakura_20130410_019036

Hey there Iwakura Rangers! Protecting the streets as usual I see!

Iwakura itself is really lovely, but the dorm I’m staying in is a completely different story…
I don’t have enough time or patience right now to explain in detail how horrendous the university dorms are, so I’ll save that for another post. But just to give you an idea… here are some photos I took of one of the windows in the kitchen…

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Yup. Most of those back specks are bugs… You don’t even want to see the floor…

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And my creepy hallway on the 5th floor.
Just last night I discovered a mukade (centipede) just near that vacuum cleaner. Lucky this was only a small one (about 12cm), but I hear they can grow to about 30cm! And it isn’t even summer yet! Time to tape the windows people!

Believe it or not it gets much worse than that my friends.
If you’re planning to study at Seika in the future, I would definitely recommend finding your own accommodation if you’re staying for longer than one semester. Four to six months is about all I would be able to take of this place, possibly a year if I really had to… but it would not be pleasant…
On the plus side though, it’s a great way to meet people, especially if you don’t speak much Japanese. There are always plenty of other exchange students around, and often they put you all on the same floor together (at least they did for me!). It’s like a constant party up here on the 5th floor! I think within the first 3 days we were already getting noise complaints… Oops.

Anyways, that’s all for now. Will update again soon with images from the Aoi Matsuri and a trip I had to Kiyomizudera with three friends from my class. Plus I went to a student-run fashion/music parade, and went back to Osaka a couple of times. Plus I’m going to Tokyo tomorrow… BUSY BUSY!!! Still need to get my Nara films developed as well… damn…
Alright better get to work!
I’ll leave you with some outfit snaps of Emma, Wing and I from our Osaka trip.

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We are oh-so pastel!

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