Tuesday, 21 August 2007

PostHeaderIcon Work finishes in exactly one minute

Hello! Tuesday afternoon seems to be evolving into the lazy period where I can update my blog. This morning I managed to connect my laptop to the Board of Education LAN after my basic computing knowledge managed to crack the numerous (Japanese) codes. So now I have a more reliable source to work/study/be lazy hurrah. I might even be able to upload some pictures.

I must warn you that before I start this recent entry I am starting to feel pretty knackered so my spelling and grammar might make a bad bad. Ironic since I’m here to teach English.

I can’t remember what I last talked about so I’ll begin with last weekend. Noah and I went with the new JETs from Aki City (Andrew and Matt) to Kochi City for more of the dancing festival (I think it’s called yosakoi). On the Sunday morning I had just awoken when Noah convinced me to hike up a mountain to visit one of the 88 temples found on our island of Shikoku. We had to rush for the train so I had no breakfast or even a drink, a decision that would come back to haunt me. At the conbini (convenient store) I quickly grabbed what I thought was a Danish pastry or something but turned out to be a cold hot dog which tasted foul. So off I went hiking… with no food/water in 35oC.

It turns out we picked the wrong bloody path and after about 45 minutes we reached a wall of trees, mocking us with their treeness. We headed back down the path of despair and thought we had discovered a shortcut across a small valley. We contemplated jumping but they were only the crazy thoughts of desperate men. Also, we saw a spider in the bushes and ran away.

When we reached the bottom I was dehydrated and gave up. I had a blinding headache and passed out in the train station, sulking at my weakness whilst that crazy American climbed the real path until about 5pm at night. I found out the other day that it is apparently the toughest hike out of all the 88 temples. Although in theory I didn’t hike a single metre of the true route.

The first half of the week was mainly work but I did get a mobile phone (keitai) which does some fancy stuff. You can email it actually at glasgowkiss@ezweb.ne.jp and I can reply woo exciting.

Wednesday night was the town festival and I had to do a few things in my position as the new ALT. Firstly I danced in the yosakoi with wooden clappers and bright clothes etc. Then I had to go onstage and introduce myself and the female host just went “KURA… KURAZY KURAZY haha” – I’m now going to use my surname. Although after that I did get to throw thousands of rice cakes to the crowd which was fun. I kept trying to throw them to all the small kids at the front but all these middle aged women smashed them out the way. I even managed to hit a mother and child right in the face. That’s 100 points.

Thursday and Friday were taken up by the Kochi Prefecture orientation in the city. It was slightly more useful than the ones in Edinburgh/Tokyo but it was mainly an excuse for everyone to go out and get drunk. I met more new JETs who had the same reaction to my name/being Scottish but it was nice to meet some other people.

On Saturday I went to the local barber who looked terrified at the prospect of cutting my hair. I can’t blame him since even back home everyone goes “Aye that’s a right thick curly heid you’ve got pal”. Poor local barber, only trained in straight/light black hair and not this dirty foreigner stuff. We had some good banter going despite our limited language but then he gave me a shave and made me lose about a pint of blood. It was a damn good shave though. I got a free comb too.

That evening the Tano/Aki/Nahari/Yasuda guys went up to Kitagawa for their festival. We were helping (ie eating and drinking) the CIR up there called Nick with his Aussie sausage stand. We then went back to his creepy empty ex-school dormitory house for some drinks and drunken chat/poker. It was a damn fine night with a good crowd but the following morning I had to play football (soccer/sakka blah blah) with a hangover. We got mauled 5-0 but I didn’t do as woeful as I had feared and had a good few runs/chances. I got sunburnt.

I think that’s everything for now. There’s probably more I could type about as I seem to be up to something all the time. I’m still studying Japanese but it’s hard to tell how well I’m progressing at the moment. I still find myself lost in every conversation and then people look at me for an opinion. Also, I need to start preparing for lessons and my adult class which start soon… speak of the devil. I just got given the leaflet that is getting sent to everyone in Tano regarding the adult English classes. I’ve never looked more like a sweaty, hairy barbarian in my life.

My message is in Japanese and reads “How do you do? It’s nice to meet you”. That gets me through everything. Even better is simply “Yes” and “I’m sorry”.


Dam said...

Why don't you have the internets at home yet?

What the hell are you playing at!

Craig said...

I'm in the process of applying so there

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About Me

I am a 24 year old Scotsman currently teaching English to Japanese schoolchildren. I live in a small town on the east coast of Kochi prefecture.