Training in Japan, a few tips!

Discussion in 'Ninjutsu' started by Brian R. VanCise, Sep 17, 2004.

  1. Don Roley

    Don Roley Senior Master

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    Some advice.

    Traveller's checks can really only be cashed at high class hotels and banks. Most Bujinkan members don't stay at the former.

    Either carry around several days more cash than you think you will ever need and/or be damn sure you know when the bank holidays are.

    I just talked with someone who spent all his free cash on Sunday night a few weeks back thinking he could get his TCs cashed the first thing next day. It was a three day weekend and Monday the banks were closed. He had a heck of a time and had to be saved by other Bujinkan members.

    It is better to have money in your pocket and not need it than vice versa.
     
  2. Brian R. VanCise

    Brian R. VanCise MT Moderator Staff Member

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    I have to agree with Don on this. I had a friend who went with Travelers
    checks and he had a hard time getting them cashed! Eventually he did get them cashed at a bank but it did take several days!

    Brian R. VanCise
     
  3. kakuma

    kakuma Yellow Belt

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    Don is correct concerning knowing when the bank holidays are. I always cash my traveler's checks at the Chiba Ginko in downtown Noda and I have never had a problem with cashing TC's or exchanging money. They do check all bills to make sure they are not counterfeit though (which takes a little time) but no hassles.

    It is also easier if you have a credit or debit card. The post offices all have international atm's in which you can draw directly from your acct. The exchange rate is usually also a little bit higher using this method.
     
  4. davidg553

    davidg553 Yellow Belt

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    FYI, you can cash Travellers checks and use the International ATM's at the Noda Post Office
     
  5. Cryozombie

    Cryozombie Grandmaster

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    So, out of curiousity, how safe is it to carry cash there?
     
  6. kakuma

    kakuma Yellow Belt

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    I've carried from a couple hundred in upward to a couple thousand dollars/yen.

    As in america I wouldn't go flashing it around. But, overall in Noda-shi I have found it to be very safe.
     
  7. Grey Eyed Bandit

    Grey Eyed Bandit Master of Arts

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    I carried my passport, my credit card, my Bujinkan membership card and about 1800 dollars worth of cash in a small pouch with a zipper around my neck at all times while in Japan.
     
  8. Cryozombie

    Cryozombie Grandmaster

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    I suppose, all things being equal, we should be safe anyway... I mean, thats part of what we train for right?

    And I dont just mean being able to fight to keep our money, but the situational awareness, etc...
     
  9. Grey Eyed Bandit

    Grey Eyed Bandit Master of Arts

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    Indeed...so don't be walking into weird places with the ladies offering you a massage outside Kashiwa station...:ultracool
     
  10. Cryozombie

    Cryozombie Grandmaster

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    But... thats the real reason I wanted to go. *pouts*

    I did see at the Japanese Grocery store near here in their book section, an english book (they have a few) that was a Guide to Japan's red light districts...
     
  11. Don Roley

    Don Roley Senior Master

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    I would be more worried about losing the money than having it stolen. There are thieves and pick pockets, but violent robbery is not much of a worry.

    One thing about money and exchanging. I have looked at the places in American airports that will exchange money. Their rates are terrible. I would get only the minimum amount you need from them. If you get in before banks close in Japan, there are a few places in Narita airport that will do it for a rate that is very good.

    Travelers checks get a few points better rate than cash. All told, by using TCs and exchanging money in Japan you can save yourself a lot (like one day's worth of cash) if you are dealing in the type of volume most Bujinkan members carry to Japan.
     
  12. Don Roley

    Don Roley Senior Master

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    This should be a no- brainer, but I will say it anyways because some Bujinkan members seem to have no brains.

    The closer you are to where Hatsumi is known, the better your behavior should be. I have trouble enough with people that go down to Roppongi and get into trouble. But to do it in Noda is not cool. The closer you are to him, the more you should toe the line.

    Case in point. I went to Ayase tonight and was walking there from the station. Way in front of me was a gaijin couple and just behind them was a well known Japanese shihan. They came to a intersection just short of where the training is with a no- crossing light flashing. The Japanese stopped and waited for the light. The gaijin took a quick look and then jaunted across the street against the light.

    The Japanese looked back at me and gave me a look. I responded with one of my own that said, "I am not one of those types." We kind of shared a moment of understanding that did not include the jaywalkers.

    Hey folks, I jaywalk all the time. But I do not want my actions reflecting badly on Hatsumi. In an area where he is known to be teaching a large number of non-Japanese, you keep your nose clean. What you do reflects on him. Japanese are very big on gossip and we do stand out.

    You may think I am being a ninny, but there are very few of you that know the culture as well as I do.:2xBird2:
     
  13. Brian R. VanCise

    Brian R. VanCise MT Moderator Staff Member

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    Good point Don and it is amazing how many people forget that their actions reflect on the Bujinkan and also on Hatsumi Sensei.

    Brian R. VanCise
    www.instinctiveresponsetraining.com
     
  14. Don Roley

    Don Roley Senior Master

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    One thing that may help save some cash.

    There is a ticket you can get, a pass, for the greater Tokyo area. All the way from Narita almost to Kamakura I think. I have heard of people getting it on weekdays, but they won't sell it at my local station except on weekends. Maybe the guys who got it pulled the gaijin card with the station folks and they took pity on them.

    Anyways, 2300 yen or thereabouts and you can get on and off the train as many times as you want on the area covered by the map that comes with it. It may or may not be worth your while to use for a day of shopping and sightseeing. But it is something I think you should at least think about.
     
  15. Don Roley

    Don Roley Senior Master

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    I have to post a warning.

    I do want to go into the details of why, but taping lessons in Japan just got a bit more difficult recently. It seems a matter of common sense that people would tape things or take pictures and use them for themselves without any sort of financial gain. But there have been people that have abused this and now I would not advise trying to whip out a camera unless you were damn sure it was cool.

    There really is no one rule for everything. I know that Nagase has no trouble letter people he knows like Luke Molitor tape his classes. And I will not even ask Oguri if I can tape his classes even though he knows me because I know he does not like it.

    A lot of people like to tape things so that they can have some sort of reference when they get back home to remind them. But there are some that have turned around and sold tpaes, or traded them for some sort of benefit. The actions of a few have now made it more difficult for the majority of people. Please be carefull about the matter and make sure you do not go against the wishes of the teacher.
     
  16. Don Roley

    Don Roley Senior Master

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    An idea.
    Recently Dave Gibb was talking to me about bringing some Canadian beer to Japan later in the month.

    It may be a good idea to bring local beers rather than hard alchohol.

    Some of the teachers here have so much booze that they could never drink it all. Most people do not drink the hard stuff all that often. I am one of those that get by with beer most of the time. I just do not have the craving for the hard stuff like I do beer. So some of the Japanese may be having large collections of hard alchohol build up while they go out and buy beer every week.

    So maybe a bottle or two of local microbrews might be an idea. Just a thought.
     
  17. Brian R. VanCise

    Brian R. VanCise MT Moderator Staff Member

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    Hey Don,

    That does sound like a good idea and you can tie it in to where you are from to help them remember you.
     
  18. Brian R. VanCise

    Brian R. VanCise MT Moderator Staff Member

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    Early on in this thread (page 1) Don Roley mentioned that some people skipped training with the Shihans in order to only train with Hatsumi. If you are going to Japan I would advise you to make an effort to attend every Shihan's class that you can. Of course do not miss any training with Soke but you can really get some private attention to detail in the Shihan's classes that is otherwise very, very hard to get in Hatsumi Sensei's class. When I was there Nagato pointed out some very important points while using Shuko that I might have missed if I had not attended his class. Shiraishi Sensei taught some awesome ukemi skills. (simply awesome) Seno Sensei worked on a very specific technique with my partner and I and showed us the correct spacing to make it work even better. So do not miss out on training with the Japanese Shihan they will defintely help to improve your taijutsu. [​IMG]
     
  19. kouryuu

    kouryuu Yellow Belt

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    This is my first post here and it`s not a happy one.

    I totally agree with Brian, when i was in Japan in April at one of Nagato sensei`s sunday morning classes, i was talking to him near the changing area during the lesson and about half an hour before the lesson was due to end, the door to the Honbu opened and two guys came in, i told them they were late, they said "we`ve only come for Soke`s class", i told them to get out and wait outside, then closed the door on them, i find it highly disrespectful that people are coming in to get changed while Nagato sensei`s class (or anyone`s for that matter)is in progress, it`s even more disrespectful because they`re basically saying that they can only learn from Soke, we NEED to go to these other Shihan to get even an inkling of what Soke is teaching, what p`d me off even more was that one of those guys was a brit!

    I`m in Japan again next week, i hope i don`t see that type of behaviour from anybody again, it`s just downright rude!

    Ok, rant over

    Normski

    www.bujinkan-kouryuu.com
     
  20. Don Roley

    Don Roley Senior Master

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    Hey Norm, welcome to martialtalk.

    I hope we can meet up while you are here. Training is a bit crowded at the honbu now I hear. Maybe some of the crowd will move out before you arrive.
     

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