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Well, today is the first day I`ve gotten around to writing in my lj since I got to Japan, and when I finally bother to log in, the webpage comes up in freakin` Japanese. I mean, I can read it, of course, but the fonts are all weird and there`s no sidebar and the format is off-the-wall.

(By-the-by, I`m 13 hours ahead of EST).

I`m at work, at the 英語科 (English department) office of 関西学院 (they write it Kwansei Gakuin, but the `w` is unnecessary and dumb).

(I love Japanese keyboards!)

KG is a private (and prestigious) all-boys school in Nishinomiya (near Kobe). I had to give a brief speech in front of all the boys in the high school (about 900 hotties--can I say that?) today. (Nob, if you were here, you`d go crazy! There`s even one kid who just got back from living in L.A. and he kinda looks like YOU KNOW WHO!) When I went up to give my speech, there was lots of whistling and whispering. Heh heh. I don`t think they know what to make of me, I mean, I`m really not that much older than they are.

I had to give my speech in English, so that the students won`t know that I know any Japanese. The department head wants it that way, so that they won`t depend on my Japanese to help them figure out what I`m trying to say. (Playing dumb is so freakin` hard, especially when you know what everybody`s saying. I keep laughing whenever anybody says anything funny in Japanese, even though I`m not "supposed" to understand anything.)

I had lunch with a fellow English teacher (she`s 40 and from Seattle and married to a Japanese guy and her Japanese is awesome) named Carolyn Ashizawa-sensei, and my teaching partner (a really hot 24-year-old) named Masa Nishimuro. On the way to lunch, the boys soccer team ran by us and some of the kids I had sorta met earlier at lunch yesterday at this really great Chinese restaurant I went to with my boss (the head of the English department), Tsu-sensei, shouted "Hello"s as they ran by. One kid, however, turned to look at me a little too far and crashed to the ground. He rolled back up on his feet and said, "Oh, akshident!" ("Oh, accident!") and kept on running. It was so funny. Some of the kids` English, however, is really quite good.

I have seven sections of about 43 sophomores each (I`m team-teaching that class with Nishimuro-sensei) and we`ll be working on speech-writing and delivery, and listening comprehension; I have one section of 6 juniors who have just returned from study abroad in some English-speaking country or another--we`ll be reading through Alice in Wonderland and working on how to write a term paper in English; and I have 7 seniors who have done study abroad in an English-speaking country at some point--I`m going to show them Donnie Darko in segments and have them learn poetry and creative writing, since it`s an elective class, for fun. In the junior and sophomore classes I get to teach whatever I want (except for the term paper stuff), which is why we`ll be working through such cool things. ^_^

My apartment is huge.

I still can`t cook, which means I`ve been making secret trips to the convenience store (Lawson`s) near school. There`s a somewhat expensive grocery store really close to where I live, but if the Hanshin Tigers win the championship, I`ll get a 10% discount. (Go Tigers!)

Well, I`d love to write more about everything here, but everyone else has left the office to go home, so I should probably head in that direction.

Tomorrow is Saturday, but everybody`s getting the day off anyway (yeah, not only is school year-round here, but they have 6-day weeks, too--it blows).

Much love to all my friends near and far.


( 3 comments — Leave a comment )
Sep. 5th, 2003 05:05 pm (UTC)
Best of luck, darling!
Sep. 9th, 2003 11:20 pm (UTC)
what the hell is a japanese keyboard like? it must be HUGE.
Sep. 10th, 2003 09:17 am (UTC)
Oh, it's the same size as our keyboards, except that every key has four different functions (that THAT out to lunch).
( 3 comments — Leave a comment )

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