diary of mikes life

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      New Oven!

I've been meaning to get an oven for the longest time, but kept putting it off. Whenever I started thinking about it I was like, what am I really going to do with an oven? I don't really have much time to cook as it is. Still, I wanted one, so I finally went out and got a fairly cheap model, (if you consider $200 to be cheap). It's actually an oven/microwave/grill all rolled into one, hooray for technology!
Now that it's here I'm of course glad I got it. The first thing I did to christen it was make a lasagna with some help from Kumi. I have no idea why, but trying to find a good lasagna in Japan is like searching for the Holy Grail on the moon. Anyway after a rough start with the noodles, our home baked lasagna turned out to be pretty damn amazing if I do say so myself. I also made some garlic bread and opened a nice bottle of red wine and voila, another masterpiece from Mike's kitchen.

  lasagna in the oven

Licence to Drive...

driver's licence Japan  

I'm now officially a paper driver in Japan, but I'm still a bit unsure why I even bothered. Though it was actually much less hassle than I thought. Aside from a bit of red tape at the beginning I had to put up with, like getting my licence translated into Japanese, and paying the fee, it was surprisingly easy. Too easy. My American friend had to take an eye test, a written test and a driving test before they'd let him on the roads, but me? Aside from a 10 second eye test which I seemed to fail no less, they just handed the licence over to me like they'd been waiting for years for me to come pick it up. Apparently this is because Japan and Canada (and a few other countries) have some kind of special driver's licence 'exchange' program or some such. Seems kind of funny seeing how we don't even drive on the same side of the road. Anyway, so where am I off to? Hmmm... now that I have it, I find myself quite unmotivated to use it.... Who wants to drive in Tokyo anyway?

      Green Thumbs...

I've never had much success with plants. After about a year, my aloe plant has seen better days. To get an idea of how it looked a year ago roll your mouse over the picture. Once fresh and vibrant, it now looks more like some sad octopus in a forgotten fishtank.
Just re-potted it a couple weeks ago, hoping to save it from growing itself to death. Don't know why, but the thing grows like mad. Never re-potted a plant before either, so I kind of tore the poor guy out of the original pot and stuffed it into this oversized blue one, which as you can see fits the black vase nicely. It then proceeded to turn brown and I thought the end was near. However, somehow it recovered and new leaves continue to pop out. I wish it wouldn't droop so much though, kinda depressing to look at now. Any aloe experts out there with advice?

  poor aloe
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