I still don't have internet at my apartment, so I must always wait out the weekend before I can update again. Here goes:
Thursday: Tokae in Nara City. This event is held in summer in Nara Park, which contains many World Heritage sites. About 20,000 candles light up nine areas in the part, creating a fantastic festival atmosphere. A bunch of Nara JETs (NJ) and I went to Nara Park and viewed the lanterns. In the park proper, someone arranged the lanterns in the shape of fireworks. I managed to learn something important about Japanese festivals: festival food is awesome. I ate some kind of fried chicken thing, very tasty. The foods at these festivals are more traditional, unlike...say...the fried snickers bar one can get at carnivals in America. Afterwards, the NJ's split up into several groups and did their own thing. I went with the group that scored beers from the combini and drank in the park. Good times...
Friday: I was busy at work surfing the internet, when S-Sensei asked me and C if we wanted to go to lunch! We ate at an Italian restaurant nearby. I had pizza, C had some gross tofu and spinach omelet, and the S-Sensei had something called Omericu (sp?). It is basically a gigantic omelet filled with ketchup-flavored rice. It tasted alright... Afterwards, S-Sensei got permission from the Kyoto-Sensei to take us to Horyuji Temple. Horyuji Temple has some of the oldest wooden structures in the world and is recognized as a World Heritage Site by the UN. The Temple is huge! There are many buildings and many artifacts inside. It was built by Japan's only Empress as a sign of Japan's acceptance of Buddhism. S-Sensei even bought us some persimmon-flavored ice cream! Yum!
Saturday: Whynot is an organization that plans parties for foreigners in the Kansai region. A couple NJ's dj-ed an 80's night at a club in Osaka. Good times...nomihodai (all-you-can drink)...enough said.
Sunday: I went to Osaka and bought a used HDTV. Japan is finally making the move to digital, so stores are trying to rid themselves of outdated televisions. Because I don't give a shit about Japanese cable, I bought one just so I can finally use my PS3. It should arrive at my place next Sunday.
Also, last night was the kanji burning in Nara City. They burn gigantic kanji shapes into the mountain. It is very beautiful. They burned the kanji for "Big," or "Dai." Tonight, I'm going to Kyoto for the DAImonji. They burn 5 kanji on five different mountains. That should be fun.
Like I said, I've been busy. I will upload pics as soon as I can!