One week has now passed since my return to Japan. So far, among other things, I have:
- gotten settled down in my own small apartment,
- met up with Leon Stauder, currently a D class insei from Germany,
- met up with familiar English class teachers,
- bumped (not physically) into Chō U at the Nihon Ki-in lobby and gotten a nod, and
- finished my first insei weekend with a 4-2 score.
To my luck, I arrived in Tokyo just in time for the flower-viewing period, of which I can share the below photo.
I was not particularly satisfied with the 4-2 score, as somewhat better results are required if I were to directly get to B class. Still, for a first return weekend after just having arrived in Japan, I wouldn’t call it bad either. The insei games this time around were played on the sixth floor of the Nihon Ki-in, in the tatami rooms with legged go boards, which was a nice bonus.
Experience-wise, there is a huge difference between having another foreign insei present and not having. Last time around I thought it was better if I was the only foreigner present, because that way I would be forced to communicate with the Japanese insei more, but somehow the insei children were more talkative to our direction now that there were two of us. At the same time, though I have not really spent much effort on improving my Japanese, I find myself better able to understand and communicate in Japanese than before.
I had planned to start cooking more by myself this time around in Japan, but have so far found it extremely hard to do so. Expenditure-wise there is not a big gap in Japan between buying prepared food and buying food ingredients and preparing the food by oneself, which as a Finn I find inexplicable. Further, two years ago one euro amounted to about 100 yen, whereas nowadays one euro is more like 140 yen—as a result, I have so far felt really nonchalant about spending money.
Regarding my living conditions, while I welcome the privacy of my own apartment (as opposed to sharing an apartment two years ago), the solution does have some downsides, too. In the past week I have been busy at getting my apartment in a reasonable living condition—for some reason the last tenant did not seem inclined to clean things up before leaving. Additionally, the apartment building is probably some 50 years old, which among other things means that most of its drainpipes and water taps have gotten quite rusty. On the plus side, again, the apartment includes a tatami mat floor!
The readers are no doubt interested in seeing the usual results sheets from the last week, so here goes. In addition to my C class results, I’m also providing Leon’s results from D class.
Finally, since the Nihon Ki-in English class was held already once after my return, I already have some professional commentary on my games to share. As the last thing in this post, I introduce to you the two game commentaries below.