British Airways Flight Review

British Airways Flight review

Journey –  LHR to Manchester. I had a travel voucher from British Airways from a cancelled flight, so I decided to use it for a trip to Manchester. Rather than having to take the train, I wanted to try flying instead. I had booked through This allowed me the option of selecting my seat for an extra £5 each way. It wasn’t something I wanted to do

Check in

I was issued a paper ticket through one of the self-service machines at Heathrow Terminal 5, and did not need to wait at the check-in line as I was only taking hand-luggage on board.

Security: there was an extra-long line for the security, partly due to it being half term. We were told several times that we couldn’t have liquids in our hand- luggage. After bagging my aftershave and toothpaste, I was surprised that my luggage was cordoned off. Apparently it was because I had a can of deodorant inside, I hadn’t thought that this would be problem.

At the gates: When it was time to board, we were led to an airport shuttle which drove up to the runway.

Getting on board: Boarding was done at the front of the plane.

Seating: I hadn’t booked my seat in advance. However, I had a middle row seat in between aisle and window. It was right at the back and definitely the worst seat on the airplane. The seat itself was a black leather upholstered airplane seat, so it was comfortable enough.

On board food service: no hot food was served to economy. However, we were given mineral water and a Kellogs cereal bar. It was better than nothing.

Cabin Crew – staff were talking at the back as I entered. However, they were happy to help with my enquiry about newspapers and magazines.

Anything else – the flight had some turbulence as the plane was not able to reach the correct height.

Arrival time – we arrived in Manchester 30 minutes later than scheduled. It was frustrating to say the least. Disembarking was very straightforward

Final comments

If I need to travel to Manchester at short notice, I think I’ll be more likely to take the train or bus. Taking the plane will be not much different in terms of the time spent travelling, especially when you include the time spent at the airport.

The end of the Korean wave

If the Korean wave, (known as Hallyu) began in the mid nineties, then it ended on February 2020, when Parasite became the first foreign film to win the academy for best film. The idea of Korean culture as something new and exciting was fading, but for a while it was the newest cultural force, with Korea leading the way when it came to innovative film, fashion and music.

the word ‘Hallyu’ refers to the spread Korean culture throughout Asia

It was quite different in the eighties. The country that everyone talked about was Japan. Japan was cool. Everyone said so. You didn’t need to have ever been to Japan to have an idea of what Japan was about. Sushi, Geisha, manga cartoons. These were well-known. And they didn’t need the Japanese government to help promote them. With Korea, it wasn’t until after the end of the country’s dictatorship that the country opened up. And by 1995, the government was funding Korean movies. An even bigger revolution was occurring in television. Sandglass was the first major TV drama with mass appeal. not just in Korea, but in other countries. Ministers realised that they could sell Korea (specifically its technology) through TV dramas that were shown across Asia. The spread of Korea had not quite reached beyond the Pacific Rim just yet.

By the 2000s, the music form Korea was catching on too. What was a beguiling me of techno, rap and electronica was being called “k-pop.” And then with Youtube, it was possible for this music to break through the language barrier and start to gain much wider appeal. Certainly, the internet helped to share Korean music to fans all over the world. But it’s likely that it would have taken off anyway, even without Youtube, which gave Psy’s Gangnam Style the most watched Korean music video.

Psy’s Gangnam Style broke the billion views on Youtube.

As the likes of Girls Generation, Super Junior and Big Bang were making a lot of noise in Asia, people were realising that Korea was in many ways the new country to discover. Korean restaurants were spreading fast, and kimchi became a new superfood. Again, this was no accident. the government deliberately promoted it. And for a while, it was exciting. You couldn’t move for Korean restaurants in London, even if they were churning out the same familiar food. And yet by 2017, it was starting to look as if Korean culture was losing it’s edge. BTS, Twice, Big Bang. the top Korean k-pop groups were now polished, slick, more professional than ever before, but people were criticising the methods involved in the manufacture of these acts.

One of the best K-pop groups and most original, 2NE1 have now broken up.

Was there any different about BTS that was distinctive from Super Junior? OR Big Bang? Red Velvet were just an updated version of 2NE1. The films were no longer breaking artistic ground. Meanwhile, people were using the prefix ‘K’ to describe anything that was from Korea, in attempt to sell its novelty. There was k-drama. then it was k-bbq. And K-make-up. All of it was beginning to grow tiresome. Was the only thing these products had going for them was that they were Korean? Maybe not, but it felt as though people felt they could make more money if people thought they were buying something Korean.

Everything from Korea now comes with the prefix ‘K”, in case we weren’t aware that Korea produces cosmetics, or kimchi.

Meanwhile, Japanese culture was quietly carrying on. It didn’t need an army of fans to sell its culture abroad, or government ministers to prop up its film industry. And however hard the Korean tourist board tries to sell Korean culture abroad, it’s Japan that is the first country non-Asians want to visit when they travel to the continent. No amount of B.T.S. videos are going to change that.

She’s on a working holiday!

The joys of the Asian girl on a working holiday visa in UK

Every year, some 2000 working holiday visas are granted to people aged up to 30 in some of the east Asian countries such as South Korea and Japan. The majority are here for enjoying a break from the often hectic lives they have in their own countries. Some come to learn English. Others might be here for work. The good news is that most are single and up for a good time.

But you need to know a few things so that you can make the most of the situation. A girl I met recently is on a two year working holiday in London. Sakura is in her late twenties, and she is over here to enjoy London. As well as working in the Japan Centre, Sakura also has a second job in a restaurant. Sakura* is as a good an example of the many Japanese and Korean girls who come to London.

They won’t have the best English, so bear that in mind when you come to approach them. And they will be changing jobs, moving around, perhaps doing some studying at the same time. It’s common for most girls to stay with with a ‘host’ family to help them settle in, for the first few months, and quite possibly the length of their stay. So bear that in mind too, because in these situations it’s going to be hard for you to be able turn up at the host family’s house, however much you want to have sex

It’s good to be realistic, so that you can make things easy for both of you.Let’s say you’re lucky enough to meet a nice girl from Japan and you’re both into each other. You become a couple. Then her 2 years’ are up. You try the long distance relationship and it fails. You could have spent that time getting with all the other girls you ignored when you wanted to be with her exclusively. Sometimes, it works, and a lot of girls who have a working holiday will return, especially if she likes you a lot. But bear in mind that it could go either way.

Another thing you will find is that these women have only a very basic idea of what life in the UK is actually like, because there is not much connection with the UK and their own countries. It’s hard for girls to come here and know how to make money , when the pound is an unfamiliar quantity – also they won’t really know how much money they will need until they actually live here.

Working holiday girls are easy?

Its not as though all girls on a working holiday are sluts, but some are going to be quite open to the idea of sleeping with a foreigner. You may have a good chance if you live in a nice area of London where she’s going to want to spend time in. Notting Hill (because of the film) and Camden (no idea why), are two of the places you are guaranteed to find Asian girls. Don’t go thinking they are going to sleep with you just because you gave them directions to the mall or told them which side of the escalator to go on. They won’t make it that easy for you. Most of the girls on a working holiday are fairly serious, and may only want a relationship, if they even want anything from you at all. And if I’m being honest, I’ve wasted a lot of time taking girls out to the sights of London, when I would have preferred to have taken them to a hotel.

If you’re looking to have sex with a girl on a working holiday, go for it. Although my experience is that quite a few girls from Japan are a bit shy and it will take a long time to warm them up to the idea. Or it could be simply that they don’t find me attractive. If you are a bit awkward at talking to girls cold, you can try some dating services. Japan Cupid is only worth it if you pay the membership, but you can find one or two Japanese girls who are living abroad. Otherwise, you might be lucky to find a Japanese girl who somehow has decided she is going to find the love of her life on Tinder

So in a nutshell, meeting an Asian girl on a working holiday can be a great opportunity if you are patient and able to deal with them wanting to do stuff you consider boring. But you risk becoming attached to the same girl for too much of your time, and most of the women on a working holiday are quite boring. So there you have it guys. here’s a video on the subject as well.

Hanging with Terumi Kai


At just 150 cms and slight of build, Terumu Kai makes a very big impact in the city of HEraklion, Greece. It’s here that she set up her ‘Japanese Langauge Factory; and shehas been living in Greece for the last 6 years, first teaching in person, and then solely online to a hundred or so students who have signed up for her innovative language program.

Heraklion is not a big city, although it has an airport for the tourists who flood the city in summer. When I arrive, it’s still the Christmas season so Christmas trees and lights are everywhere. Terumi’s house is off the main road, and it takes me a little more than 30 minutes to walk there from the Ibis hotel. When I get there, I’m first amazed by the size of the building, and then I’m taken aback by how slight she is (I’ve only seen her from the waist up in video call). When we take the car to go the centre, she can only just see over the steering wheel.

Terumi lives with her daughter, an exuberant half-Japanese girl I’ve seen in some of the videos on her Youtube reels, the entire upper floor is where she works. The room looks out on to the mountains in the distance, and the sea is right in front of us. Terumi has fixed her cameras and sound recording equipment above her desk so that she can produce her regular group sessions for her students. There’s an expensive sofa, BOSE entertainment centre and a full kitchen. I’ve come to her house so that I can take part in the group session, and also so that I can film a video for her Youtube channel.*

It’s when we go to the restaurant and the waiters all recognize her that I see she has become something of a celebrity on the island. Maybe that’s easy when there are only 3 Japanese people living on the island. In total. clearly, the locals aren’t sure what to make of this striking individual who knows exactly what she wants and how to get it.
An example is how she can navigate the tricky parents who think that their children can pick up the language in just a few months, for example. another is the issue of vaccination. This came up because when we got to the cafe, we were both asked to present our vaccination status. Whilst I’ve received the vaccine, Terumi tells me that she hasn’t. I ask her if she thinks that she should take it. ‘I’d rather build my immunity’, is basically what she tells me.#

Filming with Terumi for Youtube

After a dinner of grilled fish, vegetables, and the same assorted cold dishes that are served everywhere (tzatziki, taramousalata) I want to see Terumi-san in a different environment.
I’ve seen her in her house, I’ve seen her at the wheel of her black VW polo. but I want to know how she acts in a more relaxed spot.

Terumi has so ,much natural energy that you get caught up in it.

We walk up the hill to the commercial centre, several terraces are full of people sitting outside on the pavements. It soon becomes clear that the Greeks really love to sit around – they make it their habit to sit in the same place for simply hours.
Terumi glides in to the place, and when she is unable to present a vaccination certificate, she is unflappable when told that she is restricted from accessing the main section of the restaurant. After this little bit of bureaucracy is over, Terumi glances through the menu and chooses something gin-based and fruity.

We look at how the Greeks are essentially very conservative. And they are even more like this on the islands, where most people are stuck in their ways. This rigid rule-following is totally odds with her approach to language acquisition. In fact, I’m wondering why someone so individual should want to live here. The idea of Terumi having a relationship with one of these Cretans is almost laughable. But after spotting some overly swarthy-looking Greeks, she tells me that they use their parents cars, never have any money or ambition. I start to feel somewhat guilty for agreeing with her about this. . But then again, the Greeks I meet are not in any way friendly towards me.
Sadly, I didn’t get the sense that I was especially welcome in Greece, although maybe the lockdown has made this situation worse. What I did notice is that the Greeks have become intensely zealous about all kinds of petty bureaucracy. something to bear in mind if you do happen to travel here.

With absolute confidence in her method, Terumi is convinced that most Japanese language learners will develop quicker if they focus on communication instead of traditional grammar.

Some background into how I began studying Japanese. Growing up with the idea that Japanese was hard to learn, I never really took it seriously. Even when I had a Japanese girlfriend, I only spent a little time on it. There weren’t many options for learning Japanese as a second language, most of the courses were following textbooks. In fact, even when I booked tutors online through programs like preply, I had to try out several Japanese tutors, most of whom didn’t really know what to teach me and didn’t have any goal for me to work towards. Whereas, the main difference with Terumi is that her course is focused on getting you to be a confident Japanese speaker.

With regards to the course, the first thing to note is that it’s expensive. you pay 3000 dollars for the first stage of the program. that’s a lot of money, and some people will think that they can learn Japanese only from watching youtube videos. Unfortunately, without the regular practice and contact with a teacher, you’re going to be wasting time this way.

For more information on Japan Language Factory, please go to:

*Here is our video: