今週の漢字: 日本


I am finally here in Japan, and I plan to keep the same plan for posting as I mentioned in my first post. However, because Japan is 13 hours (or 14 for standard) ahead of EDT, I’ll probably be posting Thursday or Friday US Eastern Time. It has all been so interesting. In just one week (actually less than a week), a lot has happened. Because it’s difficult for me to write everything I’ve been through and at the same time avoid making my blog as long as War and Peace, I’ll just mention some things in detail whereas other things will just have to be briefly mentioned.

土曜日: Didn’t sleep all night; flight in the morning; departed a little late at 11:40AM; went very well; slept for 10 out of the 14 hours; when not sleeping, I ate the meals, talked to the people around me, and watched a movie.

日曜日: Early afternoon (Japan time) arrived at Narita Airport in Tokyo; passed by Disneyland Tokyo; checked in at Keio Plaza Hotel; ate dinner at a curry udon place with a few people à This was an interesting experience because none of us could really speak Japanese. There was one guy who could read and write well, but his speaking is somewhat nonexistent. So, I had to try my best to speak to the waitress to get the message across. It ended up with a lot of “これをお願いします。” Of course this includes the gesturing to the food item on the menu.

月曜日: Woke up at 6:30AM; day one of the Tokyo Orientation; breakfast in the morning; many speeches; lunch (vegetables, butter squash soup, and beans made to look like beef—I was thinking, “Interesting…”); panel presentations (funny speeches, but not much help—instead, more like words of encouragement to boost our egos); workshops; very nice dinner provided by the hotel and paid for by the program’s coordinators; 20時半から23時までカラオケをしました。([I went with the people going to the same prefecture] from 8PM until 11PM to karaoke.). I sang Piano Man. At the end, we all sang Bohemian Rhapsody. It was loads of fun!

火曜日: 7:30AM woke up; breakfast; workshops; lunch; more workshops; submit baggage at a collection area for them to be shipped to the contracting organization; went to buy an electric razor; rested a bit in hotel room; ate dinner with some people at a restaurant called Watami (ordered salted peas in a pod, dumplings, salmon sashimi, fried cheese balls, crabmeat croquettes, fried octopus, and RAW HORSEMEAT… WOOO); walked around Shinjuku alone (went into a couple of video game stores, saw many pachinko parlors, and passed by many restaurants and cafes).

水曜日: 7:45AM woke up; breakfast; shinkansen (also known as the bullet train) to Nagoya; met with Saito先生; treated to a very nice lunch (ate delicious katsudon); went by train with Saito先生 to “Koh” (spelling may be incorrect) station where he parked his car; toured Mito Senior High School and met all the teachers who were there at the time; picked up my bags; went to Mito’s town office to apply for my alien card; went to my apartment (it’s very nice!); put most of my bags into the apartment; went to landlady’s (Oiwa-san) office to pay rent and get apartment sorted; went to the Kobayashi residence to do a quick introduction; taught the directions from apartment to the Kobayashi residence to Mito SHS and also directions between my apartment and the SHS; dropped off at the Kobayashi residence; talked to Kobayashi household members (Mr. Kobayashi, who is an English teacher in SHS, wasn’t there because he’s supervising a school trip of 20 students to Australia, talked a great deal to his wife, a little to their son, a bit to their daughter, and tried very hard to understand and even speak to Mr. Kobayashi’s father who lives with them); ate dinner (very yummy curry rice although I was sort of dying from the spices; washed up; slept at 11:30PM.

木曜日: Woke up at 7AM; bathed; breakfast; Saito先生 picked me up although I was already set on walking; Started my time at Mito SHS; organized many files left for me by my predecessor; went back to Oiwa-san’s office to pay for insurance; went to lunch at a Chinese restaurant, あらい, that’s right next to my apartment complex with all the English teachers that were available at the time; lunch (pork and cabbage—very good but spicy…, owner welcomed me to Mito by making sort of like chow mein—but very Japanese using yakisoba and a little difference in taste, also ate some very good homemade cake); everyone came over to my apartment to look for the phone that my predecessor put away; went to the bank only to find out that I need to get a form from the town office; went to town office to get the form; sped to the bank to open an account; went to Softbank, a cell phone company, to get a mobile, but I can’t until I get my actual alien card; bought rain gear to cover my clothes when it rains and also bought slippers for work (my shoes that I bought are too fancy); went back to the Kobayashi residence; did some odds and ends; ate dinner (katsudon—YUM!—with miso soup); watched ナルト on TV; talked with Mr. and Mrs. Kobayashi’s daughter; did some origami; washed up; slept.

金曜日: 7AM woke up; bathed; breakfast; Saito先生 picked me up; now at Mito SHS...

Stay tuned next week for another update!

今週の写真: Here it is! It’s one of those toilets that can wash you and even dress you! =) I tried it, and let me just say that I didn’t know that the water was going to be warm and in the best angle…


Anonymous said...

interesting toilet...
- sarah

i wish i was there to hear you sing
r you good?
- hannah

Joseph A. said...

ok justin... so really are you good at singing? haha jk remember when you used to be on worship team with ME! HARHARH ok...
i read your stuff.. it was really amusing.. but i didn't get half of it... cause i don't know japanese customs and cultures and what not.. although i do recollect yakisoba from yakitate japan.. it sounds like you're really busy but you're enjoying every minute of it.. which is awesome.. i tried to convince larry to start up the email chain thing again.. not sure if he'll do it.. if not.. i will! harharh.. if i remember.. anyways happy birthday.. i took my mcat.. my head hurts i'm tired .. see you in a year haha jk.. actually no.. but i'm sure we'll keep in touch again .. so for now take care gnite.. don't forget to find a church and .. ok bye

Anonymous said...

didnt even know u udated lol seems like ur havin fun