Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Nihongo Lessons

Today, I woke up early and went to my first meeting for my Japanese lessons. It is humbling to sit in a room filled with five Japanese women and one Korean woman and one get about a third of what is said, if that. I have a LOT to learn....but then again, thats why I am taking the lessons.

I looks like we are meeting two or three times a month, in the mornings. This works perfectly into my schedule because most of my classes don't start until in the early evening or late afternoon. They asked me what I expected to get from the class and I explained to them my desire to be able to read more Japanese and learn more kanji. By the end of the meeting today, I had memorized two new kanji, the one from Spring and the one for Beauty. The lady that will be teaching me for the most part was very nice and I think I will be able to learn a lot from her. I am the only student in the class so I will be getting a lot of attention. The Korean lady has lived in Japan for 18 years and the lady helping me said she knew Japanese better than she did.

Everyone is the class thought it was funny that I knew all about Japanese history and culture but had not learned the language as much. I told them I was learning backwards and they all laughed. They were all very happy that I knew my katakana and hiragana and I think they will abide with my wishes and teach me more kanji now because of it.

Our next meeting is on the 21st and it is kind of show and tell day. I am supposed to bring pictures of everyone in my family and group of friends and talk as much about each of them as I can in Japanese. That means my speech will last all of five minutes. I think it is kind of funny that I am the only person there that really needs help and there will be three people there to help me. I kind of feel bad for making them take time out of their lives just for me, but at the same time, I think I will be able to learn a lot. Oh, another cool thing, after each lesson ends, I can come back for another two hours for additional help. If my schedule allows, I am going to utilize these people to the fullest and get my money out of this....even if it is being offered for free. I am pulsing with excitement right now.

Since, I don't need to teach until later, I have been doing laundry and target practice with my Airsoft gun. My roof makes an excellent shooting range other than the occasional gust of wind. Today, I executed four choco pan prisoners. Their crime, being stale. The penalty, death by firing squad. In my apartment, I am judge, jury, and executioner. Justice is swift and comes out of the barrel of my gun. Choco pan make great targets. They are essentially little slabs of sweet bread pastry filled with chocolate pudding stuff. The BBs make an extremely satisfying thud upon hitting them and everyonce in a while, I am rewarded with the sight of pudding shooting out of the exit wound in the back of the pastry. All in all, quite fun. The other nice part about using choco pan as targets is that they are cheap and biodegradable. When I am satisfied with the justice I have wrought, I throw them off the roof on to the train tracks below, giving the birds a tasty snack.

Tomorrow, I am in Kakogawa for a meeting that will last most of the day but after that, I have four days to myself and am looking forward to them. But for now, I must get ready for my train ride to Miyazu.


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