spinelstar: (mozart livejournal)
Ack! I meant to read all those things people posted in response to yesterday's DE, but unexpected stuff kept getting in the way. I'll try to get to them at work tomorrow, maybe... Anyone is welcome to poke me as a reminder whenever. And anyone is still welcome to post on it. :3

So, considering how much I didn't feel like going into work this morning, and how annoyed I was that I had to do a class I wasn't expecting and had to help the third-years write compositions after school, I had a really good day today. The class was all the second-years together, and the teacher's nice and speaks really good English, even if I feel like her lesson plans are a bit haphazard sometimes. Today the students seemed more eager to talk to me (they're slowly getting used to me, and I'm slowly feeling less shy >.<), and when I assaulted them at random with the questions we were working on, they were able to answer me without any trouble. I love it when they get creative with the answers.

It was fun working with the third-years, too, after school. My teacher doesn't have me assist in their class much (I have no idea why), so it was nice to actually get to work with them. They're not very good at speaking, so I was pleasantly surprised by their writing capabilities. And I feel like I got a bit of a chance to show them that it's not so hard to talk to me.

Also, I couldn't help feeling a little proud of myself that I was successfully able to translate the six sets of instructions they were given for said compositions. XD It was like being back in translation classes in college!

So, yeah. That was my day. Tonight I went shopping for supplies for my elementary school class.

OMIGOSH less than a week before I leave for Tokyo, and then a week from tomorrow I'll be on a plane home! O.O
spinelstar: (Default)
Watching someone have a heart attack is not fun.

I had a meeting this afternoon with some of the other English teachers in my town, at a junior high school on the other side of town. So the other two ALTs for Minamiise were there, which made it a little less scary. The meeting went really well, and I was happy with what my elementary school teachers had to say about the lessons I'd been doing in their classes.

We were just wrapping up, when the principal from the school we were at (who was attending our meeting for some reason) started moaning and convulsing, and collapsed.

He turned blue in the face, but he started gasping for breath after about fifteen seconds. And he came to, but he was delerious and started struggling, so the other teachers had to hold him down to keep him from getting up. He was moaning a lot, but honestly I was really glad for that because it meant he was breathing and he was fine.

The closest hospital to that school doesn't have an ambulance, so they actually called for the one by my junior high, I guess. (Or maybe one just north in Ise?) It took them what seemed like forever to get there, but once they did, they seemed to be able to calm him down really quickly. Less than five minutes later, he was sitting up and talking like normal.

I was kind of shaken up, but really only because it startled me at first. The way that everyone handled the situation-- calmly, people stepping up where they were needed-- and the fact that he was breathing again meant that the situation ended up as good as it possibly could have.

I'm just so glad he was okay. I'll be anxious to hear from Darren (that school's ALT) how he's doing.
spinelstar: (midnight fugue)
Anyone else seen the new Katy Perry video? I think it's amazing. It made me cry, actually, but that's probably because it's late and I'm in that sort of mood. Still inspiring, though.

It's 11:30 right now. I took a nap earlier, because I only slept for 3 hours last night. It was storming. Lightning never scared me before, but I'm not used to hits of thunder that last for 10 seconds or more like that. I think more than scared I might have just been feeling lonely. I had to call my mom-- the one thing I appreciate about weird timezones is they're really convenient for when I'm up at odd hours and can't sleep. Given that, getting through today was easier than it should have been. To be honest, the only explanation I can point to is the fact that I prayed really hard about it this morning. Thank God for small graces that seem huge in the present.

If my sleep schedule is a little messed up right now, though, it's okay. Apparently Wednesday is another national holiday. I forgot about it because I hadn't looked at the November calendar since they gave it to me, and since there weren't any holidays in October, it was in my head that I wouldn't be getting a day off anytime soon. So that was another nice thing that happened today. Also, it seems I'm already almost completely over my cold. I've never gotten over a cold that fast... Maybe the vitamin C soda I'm drinking is actually working.

Won't be around for RP within the next 15 hours, since I don't bring my computer to my elementary schools.

Love everybody! ♥


Oct. 29th, 2010 06:46 pm
spinelstar: (there it is)
A typhoon is coming! HEAD FOR THE HILLS!!!

My fellow JETs tell me it won't be a big deal, and talk about going to parties on Saturday night.

My teachers told me to get all my grocery shopping for the entire weekend done today, and asked if I owned a flashlight.

The Prefectural Advisors emailed the Mie JETs and advised that we fill up our bathtubs in case the water supply is cut off.

In summary, I really expect everything to be fine. (If not, I have water in my tub.) My only concern is whether or not I'll have to put the rain shutters up on the side of my apartment. And if I do, I'm sure my neighbors will be doing so as well, so I'll hear them, and maybe they'll even help me if I need it. But the mechanism looks pretty simple.

In the meantime, I don't feel like going out and driving. So I'm guessing I'm pretty much a shut-in for the next 48 hours or so... It's supposed to hit the worst tomorrow morning, and continue onto Sunday morning. So as long as the power doesn't go out, I'm here, I'm on my laptop, and I'm bored!


UPDATE: My peers are coaxing me out of hiding to go to a Halloween party tomorrow night, if weather permits. Which seems likely; I've checked the weather report and the storm forecast keeps getting weaker and farther from shore. But I'll still be around for all of what will be this evening for most of you!
spinelstar: (Tamaki towel)
With the food thing, that is.

The other teachers at my jr. high often bring in different types of food to share with everyone, especially if they've gone somewhere interesting recently. This morning I was offered some sort of dango. I don't know what type of dango it was, but they'd given it to me once before, and I already knew I didn't like it. I don't know why I let her give me one anyway; I guess it just seemed easier than saying no. But I literally gagged while I was trying to swallow it down. I'm sorry, those things are effing disgusting. Japanese people claim they're sweet, but they're not, hardly at all anyway, but they're not really anything else either. They're just gooey and disgusting and they're dipped in something that reminds me of molasses, except again it's hardly sweet at all. I hate them and I'm never eating them again.

And then today I couldn't finish my lunch. I couldn't even get close. I didn't finish a single plate of the three that they gave me. The food wasn't even that bad; it certainly wasn't the worst stuff they'd given me. But I felt my gag reflex trying to kick in again while I was sipping at the miso soup, and I gave up. I just couldn't do it. But I continued to try to pick at my food a little, feeling kind of helpless.

I've decided that Japanese food is like English food. (At least the plain sort of food they give you at a school lunch... Not the nice gourmet kind of Japanese food.) It's soggy and heavy and bland, except it's even worse because it's stuff you wouldn't recognize and they don't ever have salt at the table. I would kill to be able to pour some soy sauce on all that damn white rice they give me, without them looking at me funny. That's how my dad eats rice, that's how I grew up eating rice, and plain white rice tastes like absolutely nothing; why even bother putting it in your mouth?

Anyway, it was at this point (while I was still picking at it) that my English teacher sat down, and he ate for a while before telling me (in English), "If you're not hungry, you don't have to finish." Needless to say, I was really embarrassed, but I couldn't really do anything about it. I mentioned I didn't know why I wasn't hungry today. He politely pointed out that we were eating a little earlier than usual, because of a change in the schedule this week. After I put my tray away, I went into the bathroom and cried. I was just embarrassed, and kind of touched in a way because Niwa-sensei noticed and was being so nice about it.

I'm okay now, but I still have a bit of a lump in my throat. I'm not quite feeling well. Nothing's really wrong, but for some reason I have no appetite. I'm at that place where I can't even imagine eating anything, not even food I like. And it's just embarrassing, because my food is still sitting outside just barely picked at, and the students are all walking by and can probably guess that it was mine...

Oh, well. I tried.

Hopefully tomorrow I'll be feeling better, and can finish my food. But at least I know they'll feel sorry for me, instead of thinking I'm rude, if I can't.
spinelstar: (Default)
I'm almost ready to come back to RPing, I think. Almost.

I posted a another really long and late reply in the DE today. LOL I sound like I'm trying to start a war. XD


Cut for a rant about boys )
spinelstar: (lysol)
I don't want to spam the backroom with another post, but I have to apologize again for not coming back full-force when I said I was going to. So pass this along if anyone's asking after me, okay? (Not sure why they would, but if they are...) I'm really sorry. T.T

Fridays are difficult because I don't have access to my computer at my elementary school, and I tend to be worn out from the liveliness of the kids and the accumulation of fatigue from the whole week by the time I get home.

And then this Saturday, we went to celebrate someone's birthday and were out all night at this stupid bar. Of course I was driving for the other JET in my town (because I don't drink and he wanted to), and of course he got totally wasted, and of course he threw up on the way back after 45+ minutes of winding mountain roads. He got most of it out the window but there was still some cleaning up to do... He felt really, really horrible about it, though, so I tried not to give him too hard a time. He basically spent all of today trying to make it up to me by going with me to get cleaning supplies so he could clean it up for me a third time, to try to make sure it was all completely gone. I'm not positive that it is, but he offered to pay if I decide I need to get it cleaned professionally.

Anyway. So it's been a rough, busy weekend for me.

This week I have to put together a presentation on Martin Luther King, Jr. for my third-years at my junior high. So I imagine I'll be pretty busy with that between classes for the next two days, and probably after school as well. But hopefully things will have calmed down by the end of the week. Hopefully. *crosses fingers*

I love you guys. ♥ *flops*
spinelstar: (i like kitties)
I have these awesome little black spiders that like to show up in my apartment. They're only like a centimeter across, and they're usually too skittish to even come near me. As soon as they feel a vibration, they jump. Which makes them really hard to catch but really easy to chase into the corner. So I usually just let them hang around.

Today I got up and noticed one on my wall near my bathroom. Then I went into my living room and noticed one on the floor. I might be PMSing or something, I dunno... but for whatever reason, I decided they both needed to die. So I grabbed a plastic cup and a piece of paper to trap them and throw them in the toilet. (It's the easiest way to kill them, since they tend to jump away from smashing attempts.)

It worked with the first one, the one closest to the bathroom. But I made the mistake of flushing the toilet right away, and my toilet takes a loooooong time to fill back up again. So I tried to drown the second one but it didn't go down. I left to go get dressed, thinking I would flush it after the water was done running.

I came back, and somehow the spider had made it all the way back up to the toilet seat.

I thought that for all that effort, it deserved to live.

So I used an empty toilet paper roll to swish it over to the wall, and it's still crawling around in there just fine and happy.

spinelstar: (sanada squee)
Omigosh you guys, something really exciting is happening today and I just HAD to tell you all about it!

Are you ready for this? ARE you?

This morning I walked outside...


And there was an ALMOST chill in the air! :DDDDDD

Isn't that amazing???????

I know. I was excited.

Now maybe I can get dressed in the morning without worrying about how best to mitigate the fact that sweat's going to be dripping down my back everytime I spend five minutes in one of the classrooms. Maybe I can wear makeup again, because I won't be sweating it off after an hour. And maybe I can actually TAKE WALKS around my neighborhood without having to take a shower immediately afterwards because I live on a small hill.

There's a breeze coming in through the windows... I am so happy right now. XD


Sep. 13th, 2010 01:49 pm
spinelstar: (funny sad)
I am ridiculously and pathetically happy right now. I just successfully ordered something from Amazon.co.jp in ENGLISH and it'll be here TOMORROW. And I got to pay in U.S. DOLLARS with my AMERICAN CREDIT CARD with NO ADDITIONAL FEE.

This is a happy day.

Now I just have to resist the impulse to buy ridiculous amounts of stuff from that site. XD

In other news, do you ever wish you could stop a scene in real life to give people notes?


From Saturday... )

*sighs* Sorry. Had to get that off my chest.
spinelstar: (Default)
I was a little late in starting laundry this afternoon, which meant that I was going out after dark to take it to the laundromat dryer. When I picked it up, I went to take out the trash, too, as is becoming my habit. The trash place is right by the water, and there are hardly any lights there. It was really clear out tonight. I can see the Milky Way out here, when there's no moon like tonight.

Once I put my trash in the cage (the dumpster, basically), I climbed the steps to stand on top of the wall and just looked out over the ocean inlet. There was one light where the road curved that shined really prettily on the water. So I just stood there for a while and looked at the stars and the ocean.

Tonight, I'm happy to be in Minamiise. None of the city JETs got the kind of moment tonight that I had. ♥
spinelstar: (ignorance is bliss)
Wow, I just up and disappeared for two days without meaning to.

First I went to Meiwa to go shopping on Thursday night, because I was told that I would need sports wear and tennis shoes for my elementary school the next day. I'm glad I already had track pants, because even finding a stinkin' t-shirt that fit well was a project! T.T

So then Friday I never got a chance to log onto my computer, because I was out with the kids all day, either watching them practice for their sports day or giving a small lesson.

And then Friday night was my company party. As soon as I got home, I had to take a shower and get ready, because one of my teachers came to pick up me and the other teacher who lives in my building at 6. The party itself was fun! I was a little worried, because it's not bad etiquette at Japanese drinking parties to get drunk, and I've heard from other JETs that sometimes their coworkers get a little out of hand. But mine seem pretty chill-- literally the most interesting occurrence of the night was that my principal went and lay down on the floor for a little while. (Fear my proper-but-awkward-sounding English!) The food was really good, too: Japanese-style Chinese food (which in no way at all resembles American-style Chinese food. And I have yet to try real Chinese food). There wasn't anything they gave me that I didn't want to eat, which is extremely rare for me.

So I was glad I went! They also asked me to say a few words, since we were celebrating the new term and I'm one of the big changes. I gave it in half-English, and half-Japanese. I could have probably done it in all Japanese, but I didn't want to mess up when I was trying to say how kind they'd all been to me. My English teacher was able to translate that part just fine for everyone. :)

Anyways... It seems I'll be gone again today during prime RPing time... I'm going back up to Ise to hang out with some of the ALT girls from the JET Programme. They have this club they apparently call "Stitch n Bitch." XD So I'm going to learn how to knit!

Love you all! I'll try to get caught up on tags when I get back tonight at the latest! ♥
spinelstar: (me!)
Today's been good so far... Tomorrow's going to be my busy day, apparently. Six classes, probably. But today I just had two classes of second-years.

I'm provided with the school lunch every day, which I eat with the other teachers in the staff room. I feel obliged to eat the whole thing every day, because the other teachers always do and I don't want to seem ungrateful. But the amount of food they give me combined with the fact that I'm a picky eater has made that kind of difficult. Seriously, I don't know how they all eat the whole thing every day... And they're always so fast, too. I must have a small stomach and a really slow metabolism. After the first school lunch I wasn't hungry again until 9:00pm that evening!

I've been proud of myself, though, because there's only been one time so far that I haven't eaten all of it. And I think that I'll actually grow to like plain milk before the month is out, because that's always what comes with it.

So anyways, today there was a salad-looking-thing and rice, and then there was this bowl of burnt-orange liquid stacked high with minced vegetables and I think some meat scraps, but mostly tofu. I sighed a little bit on the inside and went for the salad.

It wasn't so good. I think it was spinach, and there were just some other vegetables in it that weren't very good (I have no idea what they were) that just made it seem heavy and soggy somehow. So I gave up on that for a little while and went for the orange stuff.

It was surprisingly amazingly good.

It had a creamy, almost tomato-/vegetable-soupy taste, and the tofu absorbed that really nicely. I found myself shoving it into my mouth without stopping to think about it, much like I would with spaghetti or a cheeseburger back home. It was easily the best thing I've had at the school lunch so far.

But I still had to eat the salad. :(

Word Phrase of the Day: Sei, na. (presumably the first word is written with the kanji 正) It basically means, "That's correct."
spinelstar: (play now)
I had a great day at my elementary school today! I thought it was going to be a lot harder than my Jr. High, because none of the teachers at the elementary schools actually specialize in English. But a lot of the them were actually pretty good at speaking English, and even when they didn't, for some reason my Japanese didn't seem to be as much fail today as it usually is.

But that's not the interesting part!

I was told that the kids were practicing for their sports festival, so I figured there would be a pretty big chunk of time where I'd have nothing to do, except maybe look out the window at them running around outside. But then later I noticed they weren't outside anymore, and the principal comes up to me and asks, "Do you like to dance?"

I was like, "Uh... I guess?" "Do you like Michael Jackson?" "Uh... Yes?"

Turns out that's something the kids are doing for their sports festival-- dancing to Michael Jackson songs! (He's a huge thing over here; I don't get it, lol.) So they take me to the gym and all of the students and some of the teachers are all dancing to "Beat it"! It was pretty much the most adorable thing EVER. I even joined in a little bit, even though I was still in my work clothes.

I am definitely going to this school's sports festival.

I don't care that it's on a Sunday. (Plus, if I do, I get to take that next Tuesday off!)

So, yeah! I had a good day. Tomorrow's back to the junior high, where I'm starting to feel myself slip into more of a routine.
spinelstar: (Default)
Today was my first day with the second-year students! I already did my self-introduction for the first-years on Friday, and I have to say, there's a huge difference between the two classes. We'll see how the third-years are on Wednesday. My first day at an elementary school is tomorrow.

I think the first-years are going to be my favorite class on my bad days. They're pretty much sweet and angelic, and really enthusiastic. (Very "genki," as the English teacher put it.) The girls are more outgoing than the guys, and they all asked me a lot of questions.

But I think overall I'm going to have more fun with my second-years, at least on the days when I'm in a good mood. Which is to say, they amuse me. I walked into the classroom (which really is hot, by the way) and several of the students were slumped over their desks. They didn't seem afraid to complain about how hot it was and how tired they were, and some of them seemed distracted a couple of times during the lesson. Right now, I find it adorable and charming. I'm sure it might get frustrating to me later.

But they (understandably) know more English than the first-years, and they don't seem as afraid of trying to say things. They were told to introduce themselves to me, and it seemed pretty easy for them. One kid got up and said, "Hello. My name is Roberto. I'm from Mexico." You know kids are at least mildly interested in a language when they make jokes in it, right?

Also, the teacher for the second-years is a young woman who works here part-time, who can't be much older than me. She speaks English almost fluently-- I think she spent a few years in LA? Anyway, she's really easy to talk to and really nice. I'm really glad I get to work with her.

So... that's today's report! Back to work, I guess.
spinelstar: (Default)
The school assembly today went well! Or at least, I feel okay about it. As usual, I was nervous and I probably spoke a little too fast, and I forgot some stuff, but I in no way froze up or made a total fool of myself. So that's good! Of course, they told me to speak in simple English, so that made it a little easier. We'll see how it goes at my elementary schools when I have to do it in Japanese...

In any case, it was probably good that I didn't go on too long. The students had to sit on the floor in the gym for the assembly, and they looked really bored and kind of uncomfortable. (I remember those days, when I had to sit through school assemblies in the gym...) It was really hot in there, too; we were all sweating by the end.

But I do have to say, I found it absolutely adorable when they had to stand and sing the school song. At first I thought it was the national anthem or something, but then I kept hearing the school's name. It was really long, too! I was impressed that they all seemed to know the words to the whole thing.

I understood parts of the assembly... The teachers speak slower and clearer when they're addressing the students, which makes it a little easier. I heard them warning the students that they found a viper near the locker room where they put their shoes, so they need to be careful. I was glad I was able to understand that; that's a good piece of information to know.

Anyways, that's been my day so far. The kids are all cleaning the classrooms, and I'm back here at my desk. I printed my pictures for my self-introduction on Friday. I might write some notes on the back of them so I don't forget anything.

I'll try to start tagging back if I get a spare moment. Love all you guys! ♥

Word of the Day: Mamushi = viper! (See, I actually learned something from Prince of Tennis! XD Fssssshuuuuu...)
spinelstar: (don't like unicorns)
HEY GUESS WHAT? I finally got 8 hours of sleep!

Except... I did it at the completely wrong time. O_o I went to bed a 6... and woke up at 2 am.

But it's okay... In a way, I was kind of hoping that would happen. That's why I didn't set an alarm for myself. Now I have a good amount of sleep under my belt for when I speak at the school assembly today. (*NERVOUS*)

Also, my sleep schedule is whack right now but it should be easier to fix this way. I'll just "stay up" until 8 tonight, and then 10 tomorrow night, and then everything should be right on track, right? In theory.

In the meantime, it's 3 am, and I'm just waking up.
spinelstar: (data violin)
I'm doing laundry today. That's all that's going to get accomplished, I think. I was going to vacuum my tatami, but I'm just not feeling up to it... I didn't get to sleep until 4 am last night, for reasons I don't understand. O_o I would get it if partying on Friday night had messed up my schedule, but I got to bed earlier than 4 even on Friday night! What gives?


I swear I have the weirdest playlist for Data right now to do Descent OOMs. The first weird thing about it is that I actually have a playlist for him-- I've never worked out any songs for him normally, because playing an emotionless android just doesn't call for music. (I guess that's odd, because he does like music... Maybe I should put together a bunch of classical pieces? Lol.)

But yeah, I've got Linkin Park, Evanescence, Skillet, a couple songs from the New Moon and Eclipse soundtracks, and even some metal in there. Although the metal is mostly for... nevermind. Not music I normally associate with anything Star Trek. XD


Yeah, I got nothing. I'm bored. XD

*tries to find brain for tagging...*
spinelstar: (i like kitties)
I made myself a pizza! :D It's the most pathetic looking pizza EVER. But pizza is pizza is pizza, and at least it doesn't have corn and/or mayonnaise on it (WTF Japan?).



Aug. 21st, 2010 10:56 am
spinelstar: (unicorn on head)
Don't mind me...

I'm just going to a Japanese festival.


Just letting everyone know in case you're wondering where I am. I know I owe quite a few people tags right now, but I probably won't get to those until tomorrow. ^^;

Love you all! I'll try to take/post lots of pictures! My yukata is so gorgeous. I'm so excited! Festivals are so much fun. <3

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