Ok guys as many of you know, I take a group of 10 students and one additional chaperone to Saitama City, Japan for 2 weeks as part of our school's sister city relationship. As I type this, I am in the library of the Municipal Urawa High School and will try to give updates as often as possible. We go to Tokyo on Sunday (a 45 minute trip by train via the Keihen/Tohoku line) for a few days in a hostel there. Up here in Saitama, the high school students pretty much laugh at me as I try to explain that I run Pokemon card game tournaments in the US and that I enjoy the game very much. Based on Eskil's observations here that I have read on the gym, I must conclude that adult acceptance of the game is more widespread in the Kansai region than it is here in Kanto. I will however, try to keep you guys up to date on what I've discovered here with all things pokemon. Once I get to Tokyo, I'll visit the Pokemon Center and see what they've got in stock. It will be fun to find it since it has moved since last summer when I last visited. I have seen that starting next week, McDonalds will offer Pokemon themed toys, but no cards, with the purchase of a Happy Set (any combo meal in JPN is a "set"). And ads for the movie next month have begun, but it is not exactly a media blitz. My host family doesn't watch anime, so I didn't even watch D/P last night (though another teacher here at school is copying it for me). I'll be getting my boxes tonight at the enkai (pokemon cards at a Japanese drinking party, yup that'll be fun. Don't worry Shadow Card, I won't open your box! And I will be back (just) in time for US Nats.