13 August 2008

Seriously! Seriously? Seriously.

Ok, here`s a typical day at the "non-skul."

9 in the a.m.

"Good morning!"
"Good morning."

I sit down and study the language.
Go online and pray someone`s online to talk to.
Now watching "hancho" and "head-hancho."

Here`s what they do:

open folder...read paper...put back in folder...open same folder...read same paper...stamp it...read it again...put it back in the folder...put it on a shelf...someone else takes it...reads it...stamps it...

RING RING goes the tele...

"Hai. Hai. Iie hai. Hai. Hai. Hai hai. Hai hai hai. Iie hai. Hai sumimasen hai. Hai onegaishimasu. Shitsureishimasu hai."

Random converstations start. Random people come and go.

"Noel, do you eat?"
"Y-yes? Why are you asking me that sh!t? Have you SEEN me before?"

Back to the paper and folder...

initial peep who stamped the paper grabs folder again...reads SAME F**KING PAPER...STAMPS THE SH!T AGAIN WHAT THE F**K ARE YOU DOING STOP PRETENDING YOU`RE BUSY OMG~!!!

Now it`s 2 minutes after 9 and I want to STAB MY GUTS OUT CUZ I`M HERE TILL A QTR. AFTER 4~!!!

............................................................but seriously, you catch me drift? I`m SO done today.

05 August 2008


As I sat in my apartment talking with some good friends online, I heard thunder making it's way toward me from the south where Nara is. Just as soon as I noticed the storm rolling in, the rain began to pour. The thunder crashes were right over head. The rain fell as if the clouds were crying (with laughter or sorrow, it's up to you). The sound was so addicting; I turned off my TV, fan, and air conditioner, opened my front door and made my way to the stairwell balcony. The symphony of nature's choir was beautiful.

The sound, the smell, the feel of fresh rain - it's been a long time since I've experienced such serenity.

I stood there for almost an hour staring at a bamboo-forested mountain standing boldly among the rice field while letting the virgin rain collect on my skin. The only thing I really thought about was...

...my life.

Here I am, on the other side of the world from home. I've met so many good people so far - people that may forge my life in a different way than I expect it to. But in the same reality which is my world, I've left so many good people. Yes it's painful, but I know it's necessary. Not that I'm trying to depress myself; on the contrary. It's just something that's been on my mind - something that I've never really concentrated on until now. It's more a contemplation rather than a complaint.

In the midst of the people coming and going in and out of my life, I wonder - not obsessively - about what the future holds in store for me. I even wonder about the lives I'll change. It excites me, on the same token, makes me feel anxious.

Through all my past, present, and future mistakes, my life will definitely unfold and mold itself until I can truly understand and see what it is I'm supposed to be.

It hasn't even been a month yet, but I can't help but be human. I can't help but go through these feelings that come with being human. I'm used to gazing into the future trying to preempt the missteps along the path, but now, all I can see is the vast unknown. I don't know where to step nor know what'll happen when I place my decision.

I honestly can't pin-point what exactly I'm feeling. Really, what exactly am I feeling? I guess I'll have to wait for the rain to fall again for an answer.

...my town smells good...it smells like a new life...

01 August 2008


Well, it's not like it's just my town that has this, but I've NEVER seen a yellow watermelon before. I mean think of it - a normal watermelon that's green outside, and reddish inside. Now, change that red to lemon yellow; WTF~!!? WHO ARE YOU~!!? Get outta here; I'll slap you.

Anyway, it's been a whirlwind life so far.

*** 27 July 2008

Separation was hard, but I knew that if I thought about it too much, it would slow me down. Rather, I took that energy to fuel my mind for the future.

The flight was long, but luckily I was sitting aisle. I met some cool people (going to Gunma, Shizuoka, Wakayama, Niigata, Shimane, Shikoku, etc.). After we arrived at the Narita airport, I realized how F-ing humid it was. It was TOTALLY not fun AT all. Going through customs wasn't fun, but the worst part was waiting in line for the damn 宅急便 (takkyubin) - SOOO NASTY FEERING~!!!

Afterwards, we boarded the bus to Keio Plaza Hotel and checked in - again, we waited in line for the elevator to get to the rooms. After like 17,000 hours, I finally got to my room and met my roommate, Keith, who's going to 京都 (Kyoto), too. After settling a bit, Keith and I met up with some other people and went to an izakaya - I forgot the name. But let me say this, drinking in an izakaya's fun.

*** 28 July 2008

OMG, I've never been to so many strange workshops in my life. You'd think things would actually be...well, never mind. More than half of the new JETs were falling asleep or ditching, though...what the hell & what the hell.

But afterwards, I met up with my friend Mitzi who's going to...I forgot, but somewhere in the Kanto area. We ended up walking around inner Shinjuku and Kabuki-chou. We SO ran into a lady-boy. その男の人のADAM'S APPLEはほんまにでかい!!!(That dude's adam's apple was F-ing huge).

Btw, I LOVE コンビニ.

*** 29 July 2008

Had a prefectural meeting...ok, that's nice. So after the workshops n'shit, I went out with some of my other friends - Kyle [Shikoku], Mitch [Kochi], Andrew [Hyogo], the only white guy, Shaune [Shizuoka], and the only girl, Kat [???]. We met up and took the Keio Line to Tokyo Tower. We ate there and went up to the observatory deck.

DUDE, the Tokyo Tower mascots look kinda...shanasty...like dog winnies...like winnie tots...not cool. Then it started raining like mad hardcore, but we still decided to WALK to Roppongi after buying some alcohol and umbrellas (yeah, we drank more). We went to a bar called Home...something...and drank there, bonding with each other.

We went back to Shinjuku and ate dinner at a ramen shop. It was DE-LE-JUSS~!!!

*** 30 July 2008

Woke up early to gather to WALK to Shinjuku Station and head to Tokyo Station to catch 新幹線 (shinkansen - bullet train) to Kyoto Station. When we arrived in Kyoto, we walked single file to the Int'l Office Something-or-Other in the shopping area. It was so stupid seeing us walk through the women's department to get to the office...what the hell.

Finally met up with my people and had some tea with them. Went to meet some people at my BoE (Board of Education), and then finally my very apartment. It's nice. I'll blog the apartment details later. At this point, I was so tired, excited, stressed, etc. that now, I'm drawing a blank like hardcore. Something something BUY THESE CHIPS, THEY'RE GOOD something something eat dinner something sleep. That's how crazy it was...and then...

*** 31 July 2008

...and then THIS day happened. I woke up early to go to the City Office to meet the mayor. Then I visited most of my schools that I'm teaching in; met the staff and possibly my new good friend, my 29 year old team-teacher guy...he seems cool. Then I went to the post office to open up a bank account WHAT? for real that happened. Then did some phone shit in the apartment with one of my supervisors.

After what work, my predecessor and I went to Uji to go to a Japanese language class. It was fun, but tiring and hard. After that, I went back home by myself and slept.

*** 1 August 2008

I was picked up by my supervisor to go to the community center to meet some people. Then, I was maybe tricked into going swimming, so I prayed like real hard that I can find a way to get out of agreeing to do something I didn't want to do. He drove to AL Plaza - a department store - to buy a swimming suit. Thank God that I'm American and sizes run small CHURCH~!!!

After that, I went back to work for like 45 minutes when my sup. decided to go. But right when we were about to leave, a reporter from the Kyoto Shinbun wanted to interview me. That didn't take long since communication was difficult. She decided to see what I was doing tomorrow...as I play with Ide's taiko group. That'll be fun. I haven't touched a drum in what seems like ages...kill me now I need it.

We then headed to hit up some lunch at, of all places, Coco's. HOWEVER, they served Japanese food there, so whatever, it was tasty.

The next stop was back at the community center where I hung out with some of the kids playing a watermelon smash game. You blindfold yourself and look for the watermelon. When the people around you help you locate the little watermelon, you SMASH it with a wooden pole. Good ol' fashioned Japanese tradition. Beat the F**K out of a $30 fruit. I tried it, too, so that was fun.

Then I ate a yellow watermelon.

After that, my sup. drove me back home. I then decided to go to Nara to mess around. That was fun.

Finally home, did some cleaning and now I'm blogging. This is REALLY long...I don't like it. I'm stopping now; I'm tired cuz it's almost 1am here.