6/3/2016 – Cafe Zenon & Preparing For Finals

This Friday, after the plans I had originally made fell through, I was planning on cleaning my room and getting my life together after two weeks of midterms and projects left a hurricane in its wake. It was going to be cheap, productive, and… boring.

So of course when a friend came up to me after class and asked if I wanted to go to a cafe and study, I jumped at the chance to be out of the room. After all, it had been a grand total of… four days since I last left the dorm and spent exorbitant amounts of money. Time to go again.

Enter Cafe Zenon, a self-described “Manga Art Cafe.” I have to admit, the place looks pretty awesome on the inside. The lighting is provided by chandeliers, which are made of stuffed animals and books.

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The walls are covered with cartoon blonde-haired girls wearing white shirts and red skirts (with one by our table, who cheekily had her skirt behind her underwear.) There were a few televisions throughout the room, showing an incredibly strange anime that I had never heard of before, but was pretty entertaining even without the sound. Even the receipt was kitschy, as our table was assigned a number that belonged to a little plastic robot, so when we paid the bill the hostess could match that number with our bill’s number.

However awesome the decor was, there were only two things that mattered to us – food, and wi-fi. We came to study, and unfortunately it’s a matter of life that wi-fi was essentially required for 90% of the tasks we could have completed. Luckily those were both INCREDIBLE. I ordered a Honey Tea Latte, which not only was almost too adorable to drink, but tasted good enough that I didn’t feel bad sucking the bunny’s foam face away.

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If you’ve ever been to an Ethiopian restaurant and had warm milk and honey, it was basically the caffeinated version of that. It was really delicious.

I was also feeling a bit hungry, so I ordered a ハンバーグ sandwich with avocado and cheese. You may be wondering why I chose to write “ハンバーグ” in katakana. That’s the source of today’s Japan(ese) lesson. Hamburger is ハンバーガー. ハンバーグ is literally Hanba-gu. Which is more of a meatloaf style thing that is pretty specific to Japan. Obviously there are really similar tasting items in other countries, but the distinction is important.
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The sandwich came with curly fries, which are my second favorite type of fry after waffle fries, and it was delicious, if a bit messy to eat. You can’t see in the picture, but the hanbagu patty was pretty small for the bread it was placed on which made it a little unbalanced. Didn’t stop the deliciousness though.

It wasn’t all play, of course. I got a solid amount of work done which is great because finals week is way, way too close for comfort. I have a paper due June 12th, a paper due June 17th, a final June 20th, a final June 23rd, and a bunch of blog posts (in Japanese) due June 24th. Then I fly home and immediately begin studying for the JLPT. So the bad news is, I am going to be really busy. The good news is, this means my productive procrastination is getting even more productive! I wrote an article, I planned my first two months of studying, I planned my trip to DC, AND I cleaned and laundered a bunch of clothes! Seriously, this is the best type of busy because it does wonders for my future productivity. As far as now… well…

At least I am going to have a really fun weekend before everything gets ridiculously rushed again.

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