Monday, July 27, 2009

and then there were three

Three of our fish have died of mysterious causes. We're trying hard to keep the other three alive.

In other news, I'm going to explode soon if I don't buy some cute Japanese dresses and skirts. It's just ridiculous how cute some of the clothes are. It's even more ridiculous how unfashionable some of the clothes are.

It's like there's a spotlight shining on me wherever I go. No matter how much I try to just go unnoticed, I can feel the eyes following me. Judging me. Some people seem genuinely curious and friendly, but others just seem...well, how it must feel to be a Mexican or an African or an Indian in the U.S. Zack and I joke because we finally know what it feels like to be a minority (well, I sort of already knew what it was like, being a woman). We finally know what it is to be considered an outsider, even unwanted at times. No one has said anything mean or hostile, but that's not the Japanese way. I just feel...unwelcome sometimes. I really want to live in a bigger area where gaijin aren't quite so few and far between.

It doesn't help my unwelcome vibes that I feel completely useless at School 1. This is my third week going there and I still barely know what I'm doing. The school is a joke; the students are only being prepared for these stupid English proficiency tests that won't help them at all in the real world. The students can pass the test on a pretty high level but they still just stare blankly at me whenever I talk. It's becoming more and more of a chore to go there everyday but I have to keep my options open just in case...

I'm going up to School 2 on Friday to check it out. Then Zack and I are going to be part of their team at the Bon Bon Festival this Saturday. Apparently the point of Bon Bon is to dance until you can't dance any more. I can't wait!

Our American dinner for Tetsuya's family was really fun. We made garlic bread, macaroni and cheese, mashed potatoes and gravy, green beans, orange-ginger tofu, lemonade, salad, deviled eggs, and mozzarella sticks. They liked the garlic bread the best.
"You put garlic and butter TOGETHER?"
They were amazed at our ingenious use of garlic and butter. They also didn't know why we put butter in practically every dish.
"That's the American way," we said.

I miss the variety that an American grocery store has, although the overall quality of food here is better. There are barely any pesticides or herbicides in use and all the produce is locally grown or imported from China (not too comforting, but they inspect all of it).

Zack and I are trying to plan a trip to Tokyo in the coming weeks because his vacation starts on Wednesday. I just have to figure out what my schedule is like. Then Tokyo, I'm on my way!

Zack's family is in my thoughts right now. His grandmother passed away last week after a long battle with dementia. Rest in peace.

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