I'm being used!

Thursday, December 21, 2006

It's been a while since I've written anything of consequence. A lot has happened in the past week or so but I'm debating if I want to go into detail about absolutely everything. So be prepared for a bunch of random things!


The diet is working!

Well, it was never really a diet to begin with but whatever it was, it's working. I haven't lost any weight and my thighs are touching each other more than ever but cellulite is at an all time low and I think this is a sign that muscle is replacing fat. The "diet" was:

1. Quit snacking between meals - check

2. Cut down on breakfast – check (I understand that breakfast is the most important meal but I never ate it when I was back home and I wanted to get back into my routine since that was working well for me before. Also, the breakfasts that I was having here were expensive and not very healthy. Now, I have a granola bar every morning. Not very filling but it does the job of being cheap, healthy, and substantial enough to hold me over until lunch)

3. Vitamins – check

4. Cook more at home – ummmmmmmmmm I've got like…no time

5. Yoga – check (my teach is crazy as I've mentioned before but that's what's getting me in shape!!)

If I keep this up, I'll be super in shape by spring! Something tells me that FFXII is gonna put a kink in my routine though…we'll see.



AKA: end of the year party.

When this year is over, I'll have been to 5 of 6 parties. Unfortunately, two of those parties are on the same night (tomorrow) and I can't very well go to both.

The second one I went to was with the Tosayamada gang. (First was with the Lions club, remember?) About 30 of us met up at an Izakaya (restaurant/bar) in Kochi city where the party commenced at 6:30 on the dot. $50 later, we were all sitting down getting drunk. I was placed randomly among three wonderful women that were driving home so they drank only tea. That meant that when people came walking around pouring beer and making conversation, they were all sent in my direction since I was the only one actually drinking! In fact, my principal came over, poured me a drink and when everyone else told him they couldn't have any, he told me to hurry up and pick up the slack while pouring me another drink.

Also, a couple of the teachers dressed up in funny costumes. A very funny coach(m) and a history teacher(f) dressed up in Chinese traditional dresses. An English teacher (Kawahara-sensei for those of you who are hip to the Largo crew) and another teacher that sits next to him(also m) dressed up in cheerleader costumes. Mind you, I have a lot of respect for these guys! I never thought Kawahara-sensei had it in him! And finally, the very hot and young volleyball coach and his friend(f) dressed as Rudolph and Santa. The coach was Rudolph. The other teacher made a very cute Santa minus the beard. The Rudolph head btw made rounds through the group and I have a couple of pics on my keitai of myself and a few other teachers dressing up with it. But that's for another post.

We played a bunch of games to celebrate the end of the year. Bingo, kanji writing contest, gestures and…something with a suction cup….

First gestures! So the rules for this game were a little different than what we do in America. They put people in teams of about 6 and they all came up to the front of the room. Everyone would stand in line and face left. The first person in line would be given the phrase and then act it out for the next person in line who would turn around to see it. That person, without ever confirming if he knew the phrase or not, would turn to the next person in line and do the same gesture he had seen. This goes on down the line until the end with the gestures being interpreted incorrectly and changed along the way. The last person would guess and say something funny or ridiculously wrong, and hilarity would ensue.

My group had a phrase about some super famous sumo guy fighting a pro wrestler. When it came my turn to gesture, everyone was amazed at my skills in acting out the sumo stance which I was only imitating from the previous teammate (though clearly it was sumo). Finally when it was my turn to guess, I said in Japanese "sumo….kick?" because honestly I had no idea what the phrase was. I don't know Japanese pop culture and it was kinda essential that I did. The whole crowed was really happy that I spoke in Japanese to them though. Incidentally, "sumo…kick" in Japanese is "suumo…kiku"

Finally, there was a hilarious suction cup game that I'm so thankful I didn't play! Two suction cups were connected by a long sting. Each teacher would take one of the suction cups and stick it to his forehead. They would them pull in opposite directions trying and try to get it to come off of their opponents head. Make sense? Kawahara-sensei was the undefeated winner complete with cheerleader costume in tow and his rewards were some random prize and a big red circle on his forehead for the remainder of the night.

After door prizes and game winnings, I went home with:

1. One nice mechanical pencil

2. A lottery ticket for 12/31/06

3. $5 gift certificate for any bookstore in Japan

4. Four cans of Asahi super dry beer

5. Two tickets for 1kg of rice from any store in Japan (I gave it Kae because I didn't understand the ticket and I know she can use it a whole lot more than I can because….I don't cook enough at my place!)



Last night I had all of 1 hour to get home, make something to eat, reclaim my sanity and then I was off again until 10pm when I finally stopped moving!

I'm preparing for my final bon-enkai and then 3 of 6 Christmas parties that are to follow. 4 of those 6 parties are on the same day so I can only go to two of them! (as in, there are two parties on Saturday night and two parties on Sunday night. I can only go to two of them since I can't be in two places at once. I really should fix that)

Wrapping presents, cleaning the apartment, making cheese balls, packing for my vacation to Tohoku (oh, forgot about that did you?) and trying to keep my sanity through the whole thing is becoming a bit of a challenge!


Yesterday, a sports teacher came up to me and told me that her daughter is 21, going to college in Nagoya and looking for someone to practice English with. Her name is Akemi and she'll be coming home to Kochi for winter break. She wanted to know what I was doing over the vacation and if I'd like to meet. I told her that I would love to but I'm going to Nagoya for vacation. HAHA (well, visiting it for two days total really…I should probably bust out a map and show you all exactly where I'm going so you can understand what I'm talking about)

So, instead of meeting in Kochi, which would be too convenient, we are meeting in Nagoya the day after she comes back from Kochi and the day before I return to Kochi. She seems like a wonderful person and I can't wait! We might skype before then but that's assuming I find time to sit down and breathe.


I'm being used!

Almost forgot about this one.

So, Sunday night I had a nice long talk with Kae about everything under the sun. We talked about culture, and life, and very general things. It was difficult and took much longer than it should have but it was very enjoyable and totally worth staying up until after midnight for.

She told me about her sons and her husband and how she met him. She told me that they went to high school together but it wasn't until after graduation that they started dating. She didn't even know him back then. To her, he was just another guy in her school.

She said that Sou isn't as good at kendo so much any more because though he enjoys it, he thinks too much. Apparently, he's always been a person to think too much. When he was in kindergarten, Kae was working as a nurse at another school about 20 minutes away. I guess Sou started worrying so much that he actually started losing his hair. He had cute little 4 year old bald spots on his head!

She told me that of her three boys, Ikuo (22yr old) was the quietest one of the group. When her sons would bug her for attention, she would say "hang on a minute guys!" but of course being little boys, they wouldn't. They'd keep being like "Mom! Mom! Mom! MOM!" But Ikuo would actually stop bugging her and would wait for her to come back and ask him what he wanted. But by the time she was finished with whatever, she would have forgotten that he wanted her attention. She feels bad about it. Eh, it happens. Makes 'em tough!

I don't remember how we got on the topic, but she told me that a lot of people in Japan think she's weird. She said that women are the smartest people in Japan but the problem is that they watch everything that goes on and if they want to say something about it, they just swallow it and say nothing. She on the other hand will usually speak her mind though never in a rude way. People will call her crazy and she just brushes it off her shoulders. "whatever" she tells me. If she were speaking English, she would have said "whatever gets them to sleep at night". HAHA, I love her so much!

Because she's "weird", she was the only person to give me a super big hug when I first got off the plane in August. She's the person who goes along with all my crazy food ideas, watches American movies in English, puts up Christmas lights and treats me like family. What a wonderful woman!

However, she's using me! She told me that she and Wakako both think they are really lucky to have me around. They think it's so cool to show me off to everyone. What? I don't get it, sure people are looking around but it's not like anything different happens besides a bunch of stares!

Apparently, being a gaijin, I have never known real life Japan.

She told me that whenever I go shopping with them, suddenly all the sales clerks are more attentive and polite. There could be a check-out line out the door but they'll only open a new register if I step up. People are more helpful and friendly when I'm around.


Yes, really, she tells me. She said it was because they think I'm interesting and they want to talk to me but the best they can do is work a little harder at their job because they are too cowardly to start up a conversation. I thought coward was a strong word but she's the one who chose it…and if the shoe fits…


Wow, 6 pages later….

I'm looking forward to all the parties I've been invited to. It's just fitting life in between all of them that's so stressful.

I got a box of presents from my mom and I've been opening one at a time until Christmas day seeing as I won't have time Christmas morning to sit around and enjoy myself (gotta go to work…pay the bills and all) And besides, opening a bunch of presents alone is depressing!

0 shared their love:

Spreading Nina Love All Over the World - by Templates para novo blogger