Originally published on 7 July 2006. This post os part of a series of “e-mails to home” from my summer working abroad in Japan!
Kon-nichiwa! School has gone better the past couple of days. We had our second teacher training on Wednesday. I was sort of dreading it because I had to give a demonstration of part of a lesson. Last time I was just a “kid” while the other teachers did their demonstrations. Both the first training and this last one went better than expected. I think it’s a great idea (although a little late–Anna and I were both expecting the promised month of training our first month here), and it’s sort of been a bonding thing for all of us.
It’s good because it puts everyone on the same level. Everyone sees that everyone messes up, and we all get corrected. Yoko is definitely the best of all of us, but she’s also the only one with any real training prior to this job. This was her major in college! Yuri, the principal, has been teaching the longest, but she doesn’t have a degree in it like Yoko. It’s also kind of fun because while one teacher is giving a demo of the lesson, the rest of us get to act like kids–and the kids here misbehave every chance they get!
Surprisingly, Yuri had some nice things to say about my lesson. She said my voice volume was great, my smile was beautiful, and I did a little dance during some dead time in a song we have to sing. I think she was expecting me not to have improved since the beginning. I just hope that seeing my improvements doesn’t translate into more lessons next week!
Speaking of school, I had a little crash on my way to school yesterday. I’ll have some pretty bruises to show for it for a while. It was totally preventable and all my own fault, but it happened on the best day at a good time. First of all, there were no cars coming. There was a person walking a few yards away, but they kept walking, so I’m glad I wasn’t bleeding or broken or anything. I happened to be wearing pants instead of my usual shorts, so I could have been scraped up much more than I was.
The sushi I’d bought for lunch fell out and fell apart all over the side of the road, so that was diappointing. Thankfully that’s all that got ruined. My pants didn’t even get ripped. My right hand is scraped up, I’ll have a nice bruise on the left side of my rib cage (that one’s really sore, actually), and my right knee will have a big, beautiful bruise for a while, but that’s it. I’m skinned up, but nothing too bad, so I’m thankful for that. I’ve covered my battle wounds with neosporin, so hopefully it will heal quickly. I was so embarrassed even though no one really saw, but at least it taught me to be more careful from now on. And I’m not all that hurt. God took care of me, but taught me a lesson at the same time!
I decided yesterday that I really like having the river right outside the balcony. I like hearing the rain hitting the water in the early morning. It’s very calming. And the other night I heard fish flopping around out there.
And speaking of the river, next Saturday is a day off from work for the river festival! I get to wear my new yukata and watch fireworks that night. I’m not really sure what they have planned for us to do the rest of the day, since I don’t think we have anything starts until 7 that night. Maybe I’ll go to Futami and go to the ocean again! I love having the ocean just a 35-minute bike ride away! I wish y’all could be here with me, but being here alone is teaching me what I’m capable of!
That’s just one thing I have to look forward to. My last 3 weeks are already packed full. It all starts on Sunday when Mrs. Koda takes us to a spa with a fancy lunch buffet and hot springs! We’re also going to Pearl Island in Toba that morning.
So tell me what’s going on there. How is everyone? How’s your family? Thank you for the prayers!