CategoryJapan

Moving to Australia

So, the time has come to leave Japan. I really planned on staying here a long time but – due to a certain opportunity and various other ‘things’ we have begun to leave Japan. I am really going to miss living here, especially the gigabit unlimited fibre internet. I will also miss Amazon Japan – same day delivery is awesome. Alas, these are just trivial matters but I will miss them none-the-less.

So – we are selling everything. I have a list of stuff here: http://julips.com/house/ If there is something not on the list, and you think it should be – it probably is. I buy a lot of stuff I don’t really need, but is nice to have.

I will be writing up another page on what we are doing to prepare for our move to Australia. You may find it useful if you find yourself in the same situation. You can check it here: http://blogger-off.com/moving-to-australia/

Oh, I am also selling the car. It is a shame that it would cost ~$6000 to have it shipped to Australia. We cannot afford this and so must sell. Even though I was told the car “holds its value”, the most I have been offered by car companies is 1500000 yen. This is pretty sad considering its only a year and a half old, has less than 20,000km on it and cost us initially 2800000. Still, without sacrifice there can be no progress 🙂

 

日産カーウイングスとGoogleアンドロイドスマートフォン

アンドロイドのスマートフォーンとカーウイングスをお持ちの方々に。

私はHC510D-A/WのカーナビとソフトバンクのHTC Desire(X06HT)を使っています。電話、オペレーターサービスと音楽はBluetoothで動きますが、データサービス(Google マップ、最新交通情報など)は使えません。

カーウイングスのデータサービスをご利用するには、普通の(対応している)携帯電話ならBluetoothで使えますが、アンドロイドや、iPhoneや、スマートフォンはそのままでは使えません。なぜなら、BluetoothのDUN (Dial Up Networking)プロフィールは設定してないからです。

Bluetoothは色んなプロフィールがあります。例えば、友達の携帯にBluetoothを使ってファイルを送るとBluetoothのOPP(Object Push Profile)を使用します。Bluetoothのヘッドフォンなら、A2DP(音楽)か、HSP(電話)を使用します。

HTC Desireで、オペレータサービス(通話の方)はHSPだからOKです。それに、音楽はA2DPだらか、Bluetoothで携帯からの音楽も車に聞けます。データサービスを利用すると、DUN (Dial Up Networking)プロフィールが必要です。

PDANETと言うアプリをインストールすれば、DUNプロフィールを使えるようになる。そして、携帯とカーナビをまた、ペアリングして、データーサービスを使えます。

Space Battleship Yamato K-Truck !

Currently for sale at the Yahoo auction Japan website is a K-Truck (Small truck) that supposedly looks like the Space Battleship Yamato. The truck itself is listed as a 1989 Nissan “real yamato.” The truck has done 180 thousand kilometers, has a 5 speed manual gearbox, a 550cc engine and is 4 wheel drive.

After looking at the pictures, one has to wonder what kind of person would want to drive something like this.

If you take another look at the third picture, you may notice that there seems to be a microwave, laptop computer,  typewriter, telephone, blow up doll, champagne and a bottle of Dom Pérignon in the back! CRAZY! You would have to pay me to even think about driving that around.

So, you may be thinking – “Who on earth would want to buy that train wreck.” Well, it turns out there are (at the time of writing) 16 bidders. And the price is an astronomical (for what it is) 1,631,072 Japanese yen or US$19,667. According to other news sources, the seller initially didnt expect anyone to be seriously interested – apparrantly accepting bank transfers for payment to an account held by the Starsya branch of Isukandaru Bank (ンダル銀行スターシャ支店) – Which is a fictional bank as far as I can tell.

Yahoo Auction Link : http://page4.auctions.yahoo.co.jp/jp/auction/d112900829

Softbank Taking Pre-Orders for Desire HD

Its only been a few months since the Desire was released (and actually available/in stock) on Softbank, and they are already taking orders for the Desire HD. If you jumped on the Android bandwagon and bought a Desire, its not quite worth the upgrade unless you have more money than you need.

These are the HD ‘improvements’

Bigger screen: 4.3″ (Not AMOLED) Screen compared to the Desire’s 3.7
More ram & internal memory: 1.5gb internal & 768mb ram
Better camera: 8 megapixels
Better sound / multimedia: Dolby mobile and dlna.

I assume the non hardware upgrades will also be made available via custom roms for the original Desire. If you are planning on getting one, I highly recommend pre-ordering ASAP. I reserved my Desire the day they started taking pre-orders, and one month later I was one of the very few to get the Desire on the official sales day. Unless they get a decent amount of stock this time round, its very likely that if you do not pre-order, you may be waiting for a few months to get ahold of one.

Here is the Softbank link: http://mb.softbank.jp/mb/smartphone/product/001ht/

And the HTC official Desire HD page: http://www.htc.com/www/product/desirehd/specification.html

I found a Pie in Japan!

Finally! I found a pie for sale at the supermarket. Just to clarify for the non-Kiwi people out there, A ‘pie’ is typically made with puff pastry and filled with mince meat. Not apples. Anyway, except for one occasion where I found a pie for sale at a Kiwi pub (700 yen!) I haven’t had a pie since leaving New Zealand four years ago.

Japan does not make pies. Simple fact. I have been looking since I arrived. The bakers have no pies. The convini shops have no pies. The supermarkets have no pies. Even Costco doesn’t sell pies (Understandable as it is a US company). I would make my own if Japan had ovens – they do not. So, imagine my delight when I discovered the first thing remotely resembling a pie from home.

Here she is:

I was fairly disappointed to discover after unwrapping the pie, it was lacking any sort of base, or sides for that matter. This is the first pie I have seen in a plastic cup. It tasted alright, even better than I had expected but it also wasn’t very big. If I were to give the pie an overall score, with 10 being on par with a good old NZ potato top mince pie, it would be around 6. Which isn’t too bad all things considered.

Where can you get this pie you ask? Other than the Aeon near Kaihin-Makuhari station in Chiba, I have no idea. Here is the map:


大きな地図で見る

New Car! Nissan X-Trail 2010

I have finally gotten around to writing about our new car. We decided it would be better to get a new one, and not continue spending money on repairing the old Volkswagen Jetta. It took a while to convince my wife, but after a few months of subconscious nagging and a ‘well timed’ breakdown with the Jetta power windows, she finally gave in.

Luckily we purchased the car in time to qualify for the ‘Eco’ discount that the Japanese government was wasting money on to help out the environment. Unfortunately, the other discount you get when disposing of an older vehicle didn’t apply as we hadn’t had ownership of the vehicle for more than a year (would have been a further 150,000 yen discount)

After visiting a few car dealers we decided that we both really liked the Nissan X-Trail. It is a fairly simple vehicle, 4×4 and was barely within our price range. We bought the vehicle just around the time when a new model was about to be announced, meaning we managed to get a significant discount. Only 9 kilometers on the clock! (Factory testing etc)

After picking and choosing from all the options, it ended up costing around 2,700,000 yen. I am really looking forward to getting a decent set of stud-less tires and heading up the mountains this snowboarding season. Heated Seats!

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