AU Cell Phone

Ever since my run in with the jerks over at YahooBB, I have been very wary about addressing issues I have with any kind of service I'm paying for here in Japan.

For example, recently my phone started glitching on. It's 3 years old afterall so it's a little expected. But I didn't want to go into the shop and have to explain the problem just to be given the run around. So I just worked around the glitch (the screen would just shut off randomly)

Finally, while I was in Kochi for winter vacation the display on my phone officially died.

I was phoneless for the first time in years and that 18 hours was such a challenge!!! (only because I was trying to make plans with friends! I'm not TOTALLY dependent on my phone! ...not like I am with my laptop...but that's another story)

So I went over to the AU cell phone shop in Kochi city. And this was basically how the conversation went:

Oh, your phone is broken? Hmmm, well it is 3 years old afterall. Hmmm, alright! Here's what what's going to happen. We'll send your phone in to be analyzed. If it turns out to be a problem with the phone naturally then we'll fix it free of charge. If it was broken because you did something to it (it was dropped quite a few times in the past 3 years...) then we'll have to charge for the repairs. It won't be more than $150 (cheaper than a new phone) but we'll call to confirm with you what you'd like to do. The entire process will take about 10 days. Oh, your leaving to go back to Okazaki in 3 days? That's no problem, we'll send your phone to a shop by your home. Also, here's a phone we can lend you in the mean time. It's free of charge unless you break it of course. And of course we'll put your sim card in the lender phone so you'll still have all your pictures, preferences and address book. Have a nice day!

And that was that. I ended up getting calls from them several times after this. Each time I was convinced they were going to give me some bogus line about how I had done something to my phone that would require me to pay XXX amount of yen and also do something ridiculous like revoke my visa or some such nonsense.

First they called to confirm that it would in fact cost some amount of money to fix my phone. I couldn't understand what the woman was saying on the phone because she spoke so fast, but I assumed that the $15o would be charged and I would just have to bite the bullet and pay up.

Yesterday I got the final call that my phone had come in and I could drop by to pick it up.

Today, I went in and this is how the conversation went:

Good afternoon! Here's your phone, yes it's the same model you had before but it's been replaced by an entirely new phone. We'll just pop your sim card in here and there you go! A brand new (old) phone! That'll just be 5200yen ($50) but since you've been with us for so long, you've collected quite a few points so if you'd like, you can pay for it in full with the credit you've accumulated. You'd like to do that? Thank you very much and have a nice day!

Bottom line, I got a new phone for free :3

AU is the BEST ever!!!!!

First Day of School

That's right! Today was the first day of classes after the winter vacation. I have some new classmates and a few new teachers as well. It's shaping up to be a good term!

However, the winter vacation was all of a whopping 3 weeks. I slept and relaxed so much that I was particularly lethargic today. I could barely keep my eyes open in class. It was horrible! So I went for a bike ride after school and will continue to do so everyday until I get my energy levels back up!

In other news, I joined a Jazz band. Or rather, I was recruited by one. They needed a new English singer and I just happen to be an exhibitionist with a decent voice so I agreed to try it out.

At the same time however, this is not a small band. There are about 18 members total. Also, have I ever mentioned that I'm not a big fan of jazz? In fact, I usually hate it. It just doesn't do it for me. But I decided that this was too awesome of an experience to turn down and it's also an awesome way to use my Japanese in a very real way. I mean, why else would I be in Japan unless I wanted to sing English for a Japanese Jazz Band?

So I've started practicing some of these songs at home (my neighbors must love me) and for the most part, I just really don't like these songs. Some more than others. And then the icing on the cake is, the band director has decided to throw in Whitney Houston's "I Will Always Love You" just for giggles. I'll admit, it's fun to sing and it's one of my favorites from the list just because it's NOT jazz at all. But at the same time, I feel like an idiot singing such a cheesy song.

I mean I cringe every time I have to take a deep breath to belt out, "AND IIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIEEEE-AIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIII will always LOOOOOVE yooooOUUUUUUUUUAAAAIIIIII will alWAYs love..."

You get the idea

Ah well, if I sing it well, that's all the matters. But this isn't a Karaoke box either. I'll be in front of an audience (O.O) something tells me I'm gonna probably regret this :P


Uh... Here's the past month or so....

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