Taking the world less travelled

A week or so in Japan

Posted by on Feb 8, 2010 in Life | 7 comments

Here’s a week or so in the life of me!


The week starts off with the water in the gutters all iced over. Coming from a country that is nice and warm always, stuff like this is exciting to me.


So at my middle school they were playing volleyball. At the end the winners played the teachers. OMG it was freezing inside that gym, I think I died. I didn’t have gym shoes either, but in the end one of the students let me borrow her shoes and I played for 2 minutes with the teachers, scoring one goal but also losing one goal. So I guess I contributed nothing.


An assembly after the volley ball. At things like this you bow before and after someone does a speech. I think it is a better idea than trying to clap cold hands. It is certainly different though.


The view as I walk from school to the bus stop. I always think that it is just so beautiful around here. The camera never does it justice.

I am taking all these photos from my iphone, so the quality is pretty crappy. I also always seem to get a smudge on the photos, but that is just grubby me.


At the JET mid year conference. Hmmmm…. This was better than the orientation in Tokyo for sure, but still…. The best things I got out of it were a couple of ideas for games (reverse bingo anyone?). There was also information about the teaching English program in Finland and how they can totally speak English by the end of their high school years, but of course everything that was addressed will not be implemented in Japan. They could do it – after all I’m pretty sure if they started the Middle school textbooks in grade 3 here they would be able to do it easily. Thinking that perhaps they would move a bit slower than what they do in middle school, I see no reason why a grade six student could not graduate primary school with the English knowledge of what a current grade 9er (grade 3 in middle school) would have. However it is Japan’s policy that we just play games with primary school kids so it’s not going to happen…

That’s my thoughts/rant for now!


We were the bad kids up the back…


My first time bowling in Japan. Their shoes aren’t clown shoes! I wanted to keep them.


Before bowling we had all you can eat pizza which was pretty good. I also won bowling which is an unexplained phenomenon and I hope I didn’t break the universe.


I still can’t believe people eat the whole fish, head, tail, bones, all. I can’t fathom it. The thought makes me want to throw up.


The bus on the way to work.


From the top of the hill, walking to the bus stop from my middle school


My mountain school. This is all the kids in the school. :)


They has a skipping expert come in from another city to teach skipping skills. It was actually a lot of fun and I think I want to get a skipping rope when the weather warms up a little bit. I remember when I was a child I used to be able to skip for hours.


Rice fields everywhere were getting… um… machined over. This one is my back yard.


Tis amazing! There are actually people on my bus today!


View from the bus


Dinner. Home made wong tong soup – perfect for a cold night.


Everywhere was covered in cloud. This is me waiting for the bus…


More cloud.


But when I got to the top of the mountain where my school was I realised I had actually stepped out of the cloud. That was pretty cool.


Middle schoolers serving lunch. At my schools everyone eats in one room.


More fish. But the vegetable thing to the right side has grown on my and I enjoy it now. At middle school you can choose how much you eat which is fantastic. I always had trouble getting through all this food. Now I am trying to be more healthy in my everyday life I’m trying not to eat more than half of the rice. I try not to be guilty about throwing out all the food I don’t eat. I am thinking that if I don’t see the results I want by the start of the new school year in April I’m going to try and cancel school lunches and bring in my own. The downside would be losing valuable interaction time with the students.


After lunch you have to separate all the rubbish. You also wash your milk carton and unfold it.


This is still the cloud day… After school the cloud had cleared at everything looked amazingly clear. You can’t see it through the camera as well, but it was awesome. This is my middle school.


Friday! This is at an elementary school. I was always a fussy eater, but as I got older I became less and less fussy and now I eat quite a lot. Unfortunately, being back in Japan I feel like a fussy eater. I don’t like seafood and I don’t like citrus fruits. These two things are often served. I managed to get rid of the orange that was served with this meal, but had to eat the tuna croquette. *sigh*.


So at this school I always had a fax machine in the corner of my desk. Now I have a fax machine in the middle of my desk and a computer on the corner of my desk. Yeah, thanks guys. I have lots of room to work on. :P And I can’t even feel comfortable using the computer because I sit next to the vice principal. :P


View of the primary school as I wait for the bus. Yayayay, it’s Friday and now weekend time!


Well, that was my week or so, let me know what you think! Do you want me to post more stuff like this?


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  1. Ellie

    Ahhh rural Japan, how I sometimes don’t miss you at all… :D Go ahead, post more stuff, this is pretty cool and nostalgic.

  2. Jamaipanese

    i like these posts. Try to invest in a tiny but capable digital cam to give the views more justice ^^

  3. Japanese Phrases

    Great story. I still remember spending a lot of time at the bowling ally when I was a student at Waseda. Good times!

  4. Shandra

    I’m not able to find my color for some reason. Would I be in the green or blue group if I live in Murray Utah? I’m execitd to use your site. I want to be a gardener and this will definitely help.

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