Wednesday, July 23, 2008

I went blueberry picking


Dead of Summer

Friday, July 18, 2008

The cicadas are finally here which marks the beginning of the dead of summer. I rather like it. At least I'm not freezing! And I'm already dreading winter (ToT) it'll be nice to cool off but I just hate winter so much!

Maybe the truth is, I just like walking around nekkid...

So today was my last day of teaching until the beginning of fall. I've been sitting at my desk for more than a week now with nothing to do. I had one class today as a final hurrah and now I get to continue sitting at my desk for another 6 weeks!

But I have boredom fighting plans. Oh yes.

As for Yosakoi, we finally finished learning the entire dance! It took us exactly 7 days. This is not an easy dance! But it's much more fun now that I'm perfecting the moves I already know and not having to learn new things on top of it. Now I have to make hair appointments and figure out how to do my makeup! Ack! I have no idea what I'm doing!!!

And I can't wait to figure it all out o(^w^)o

Strike Three

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Guess who's dating one of my Yosakoi instructors!!! That's right, you guessed it, the cute little girl at my mountain school!!!


She's 17, he's 19. No, not such a big difference. But I freaked when I found out one of my high schoolers was dating a college student. And then I freaked out again because that college student was only 19. I've never felt old in my life until I heard that. I'm probably the oldest person on the team!

But still, this high school student isn't just any student. Oh no. I've watched her grow up since she was still a little 1st year. Now, 2 years later, I watched her flirt and date almost every boy in the school (there's only 25ish students now) PLUS some of the boys at my base school. And sometimes she didn't even wait to break up with the last before she started with the next.

Now slut is a strong word to use for this girl but...

This is what I get for living in inaka Kochi. Everybody knows everybody and even more know who I am just because I am the ONE of THREE gaijin women living in this area. Clearly, this instructor brought it up to my student that he saw me because I never brought it up to her that I was on the KUT team. Why would I even come up in conversation?! Did he know that I was her teacher? Or did he just bring it up as a conversation piece. "Btw, there's a gaijin girl on my team. Huh, imagine that!"

In the end, I didn't really want to know that she was dating this guy (needless to say I think he could do better...AND NOT ME if that's what you're thinking!!!) and it's kind of beyond me that not only did she tell me and show me pictures on her phone but tonight he thought it would be neat if he walked over and introduced himself again to remind me that he was dating my student.

I joined yosakoi to make friends. Not to meet my students boyfriends. It's not that I have a problem with hanging out with my students outside of school but 1. that breaks the teacher/student relationship and 2. I don't want to hang out with this student.


Anyway, the dance is much harder than I expected but that just makes it more enjoyable when I finally get a step that I thought I would never understand. 3 hours a day is pretty intense but it's good fun. I'm really enjoying myself!!!

Yosakoi and my poor damaged brain

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Forget making friends. Forget sweating to death in the hot unairconditioned gym. I can't remember one move to the next!!!

I don't know if it's because I haven't used my brain in quite some time but honest to god, I can't remember what comes next in the sequence. So if we're doing things really slowly and I can sloooowly see what's coming next, I can do it pretty well. But as soon as we get a little fast I start messing up and as soon as we get to the actual speed of the song I just stand there drooling on myself saying "daaaaaa"

Tomorrow we have a break so I'm going to use that time to just go over what comes next in the sequence! Good golly we're only a minute into the song and we're not even close to being half way yet (ToT)

BTW, here's the official video for my team from last year.

And this is the song we're using this year. If you think it's a slow song you'd be wrong.

Yosakoi Start!

Monday, July 7, 2008

Today I finally started Yosakoi practice. I decided that I wanted to be more involved in my area and make more Japanese friends so I joined the Kochi University of Technology Yosakoi Team. They happen to be right down the street from me and since it's a technical college, I get the extra added bonus of the 75-80% male population. Score.

So in a nut shell, Yosakoi is a traditional dance started around 1954 where teams of no more than 150 people each will get together in the city and dance to their own variation of the Yosakoi song. I found a video of it but it doesn't do it justice. This event can be very overwhelming. In fact, my eikaiwa ladies told me that they would love to see me dance but wouldn't actually come out the event because it made their heart race too much. They'll stick with the live feed on NHK TV.

So here's the vid. I'll keep you guys posted as I progress. I will be practicing every day from now until August 12th, 6-9pm.

Nina Wants...

Nina wants to start spending less time at work starting next week when classes end for the summer and she will be forced to sit at her desk all day for around 60 days.

Nina wants to clean her apartment. She wants to finally pick up the clothes off the floor, categorize them and find some place else for them to go.

Nina wants to heal from the tiny sun burn blotches she got from the beach Olympics. What's up with Japan and not being able to find waterproof sunscreen? Is it too much to ask if she wants it to smell like coconuts?

Nina wants to gain some weight healthily but can't seem to find any (real) cheese or whole wheat bread outside of the Internet. Even half wheat bread would be ok.

Nina wants Yosakoi practice to start. Some exercise would be good for her.

Nina wants to make a plan for her future but keeps procrastinating because it's easier than confronting her fears.

Nina wants to continue working with her third year students who are really showing signs of improvement. It gives her chills to see how much they've learned in such a short time.

Nina wants the heat, or at least the humidity, to die down just a little.

Nina wants to air out her apartment because it smells like fish. That's what she gets for making salmon in the summer. Unfortunately, it's too hot to open the windows for too long.

Nina wants to figure out what those tiny little beetles are doing in her apartment and how to get rid of them. They aren't attracted to light so her strategically placed fly strip doesn't work on them and they're everywhere. But the don't bite....

Nina wants to figure out how to get rid of her strategically placed fly strip. It was only 100yen ($1) and now it is stuck to her kitchen wall permanently. If the strip goes, all the stickum will stay...and then she'll have flies stuck to the wall where the strip once was! That wasn't what she was going for.

Nina wants to make plans to travel to some other Asian countries but is afraid of spending money and precious vacation days.

Nina wants to just be

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