lazchan: (everything as planned)
I know I'm posting a lot lately, but I just had one of those odd moments of realization.

Japan made me a lot more confident about myself, including my appearance. I don't really like seeing myself in my really baggy clothing anymore, I realize that it just doesn't look good. While I still won't go really right and still like things just a little long in the shirt size, I don't mind it being a little more shaped to my figure.
lazchan: (moonflowers)
Random things--

Spent the weekend + a few days in Osaka/Kyoto/Himeji area. Was pretty neat--hung out with a few friends and while we didn't do everything together, it was still a blast.

Bonnie and I got into Kyoto way early and we poked around, saw Toji (five storied pagoda) and a cool Book-Off. I got a few things there and so did Bonnie. XD Those stores are rather addicting. We bummed around Osaka part of the day the next day--Lindsey and I headed to Osaka Castle and on one of the floors, you could put on these helmets that they wore during the time the castle was being ruled. XDDD We got pictures of it on Lindsey's camera. When the other people saw what we were doing, they started taking pictures of us as well. XD

Went to Den-Den Town (Akihabara of Osaka) and shopped a bit there. Found a few cool stores and I'd love to go back to K-Books and drool a bit.

USJ was really fun-- XD Especially waiting in line for a roller coaster in front of these Japanese school girls that kept on giggling at us. ^__^ And the Peter Pan show was awesome. And as Bonnie and I were leaving, we saw a street performer (from San Fran!) entertaining the crowd with tricks and teasing. It was pretty awesome.

On the last day, we were going to see Takarazuka Revue, but the tickets were sold out (:__;) so we'll try and hit the group when they come down to Fukuoka in July. So instead, we saw the infamous Osaka aquarium and it was kinda nifty, but I thought a bit overpriced for what we saw, but Bonnie and I agreed that it had to take a lot of money to maintain everything. We also went to Himeji Castle and poked around there (really large and the best maintained/preserved oldest castle in Japan). The stairs are like the ones in Kumamoto--narrow and steep. Walking down those in your socks is NOT fun. =P

But all in all it was a lot of fun--if tiring (almost ten hour bus ride from Fukuoka to Osaka, on top of the three hours from Kikuchi to Kumamoto to Fukuoka) and it was great to meet up with everyone.

Oh yeah... while we were in Den-Den Town (and had real Osaka Okonamiyaki) we stopped at this arcade type place and saw Toushi (sp?) from X Japan. Randomly he was there giving a free concert.

Non trip stuff-- but class stuff. =D

In class today, while we were doing a reading practice thing, I got the boys side. (for some reason, the girls were looking really relieved they didn't have to read for me) I'm not that scary, I'm easier on them than the JTE!. At one point, one of the boys was winking at me as he gave his info. WTF, lol. So adorable.

But it's Golden Week this weekend--so one more day of classes, then a four-day weekend. And the kidlets are getting ready for midterms, so classes are either going to be touch-and-go or really dead boring. Although I think I found of a way to use Mad Libs as part of a lesson. :)

But it's so weird to think that I only have three months left. It feels like I just started in some ways. But I'm totally more adjusted now and I'm going to miss my students like crazy.
lazchan: (Default)
I really should have brought my laptop with me to work today... because my teacher that acts as my supervisor here doesn't have my schedule for the week, the classes are messed up anyhow b/c of exams and such, and he told me that I won't have classes today anyways. ]

And I don't have any classes tomorrow, either. ^^; I'm going to finish the book I'm reading before long and I can only bum around on the internet for so long--cause other people use the computers here.

*flops over and sighs* Maybe I can leave after I get my schedule for the week. I don't think there are any afternoon classes anyways. The schedule seems kinda wonky (shorter classes, which usually means nothing in the afternoon).

edit: teacher came RIGHT as I was posting this, gave me the schedule. Today in my one class, they're watching a movie. I can sit and watch the movie with them, or sit in the office. It's the Shawshank Redemption. I think I'll go to class. :D Tomorrow, no classes, of course-- Wed, two classes and Thursday and Friday each have one class, I believe. For some days (like today) I can leave after fourth period, cause there are meetings.

Again, I love this school. ^^

Plus, my teacher was giving my advice and talking with me about good classes and topics and how to format them and FEEDBACK is glorious and there is good chance he's transferring out next school year. WHHHHHHHHHHY am I losing the good teacher? He's made of all sorts of awesome and win and he's going to be leaving. ;__;
lazchan: (facepalm)

One of my teachers wants to make a regular debate over the use of "had" in the perfect construction versus the simple past. I gave him an email from my linguistics professor. I even told hin that we're both correct, and yet he continues to argue and push the issue and then tell me that my English is bad and I learned it in a strange way.


I ... argh!!! He is correct, I am correct and it's making me laugh and be frustrated at the same time.

He's picked up a copy of Time magazine to show me his "correct" had usage, which I quickly pointed out how it could be used in my way as well. His major thing is that if you have two events, that if you do not use the "had" it changes the meaning of the sentences. One example I was rather pleased to point out how his usage completely changed the time order and he contested, went to a meeting and then we shall resume the debate when he gets back from it.

Anyone want to help me with this? He wants to send an email to my linguistics professor to contest the point further. *laughs*

I'm the native English speaker here and with a degree in Technical Writing. I think I should know how my own language is spoken. ^^;
lazchan: (Default)
and again it is proven that the internet is a very small place...

while talking on a LJ community, a person and I exchange comments back and forth. They are a teacher and I mention I'm an assistant teacher in Japan. The convo goes with them guessing I'm on JET, they had been teaching with JET for two years and just came home...

it eventually boils down to they taught in Kikuchi. The town I'm in. Go figure! I think they taught JHS, they know two of the ALTs here that are currently JHS teachers.

What are the chances? XD
lazchan: (Default)
Is it sad that I just want to go home to make food, eat and relax and do something semi-productive, rather than sit in the office and do nothing for the next 3 and so hours?

The teachers will be in a meeting and so I have even LESS to do. *re-reads book and tries not to sleep*
lazchan: (Default)
Okay, so--

This is to my flist of those that are in high school/have recently graduated high school.

Can you give me a general overview of what high school is like? Things that are popular (clothes, actors/actresses, singers, etc)

Also about graduation and prom?

I'm trying to put together lesson plans about some of the differences between American high schools and Japanese ones and I'd just like a current view if you all can help. ^__~ Thanks!
lazchan: (goddess)
Well, I put in my vote for the primaries. *crosses fingers*

On another note--my first class today was probably the most awkward thing EVER. The kids weren't any more noisy than I'm used to them being, but apparently my teacher had run out of patience. He slammed the desk and yelled at them, then subjected them to a lecture. He was even like to me ''they can't do this today, they are too noisy...''

Oooh, man it was just akward standing there while he lectured them. I caught bits and pieces of it and I wanted to crawl under the desk. Yikes. Angry teacher...

and he's the discipline teacher, I believe. ^^;;;

--Also, this week, I've been told I can go home early starting Wednesday, cause it's a half day for the students and the teachers are just going to be in a meeting about exams. My teacher was like ''and you can leave at noon if you want...'' Yes, please! XDD

(Yes, I'm lame, but it beats sitting in the office for four hours doing nothing at all...)
lazchan: (bones)
So tomorrow is the "Super Tuesday" voting madness. Even here in Japan, people know about how crazy this race is. =D It's really kind of fun to see it from an outside perspective.

And I am SO glad I have the chance to do my voting online. Makes it a lot easier, that's for sure. There are three voting centers in Japan, but a little too far away for me to go to.
lazchan: (Default)
It's official now...

I am NOT recontracting for another year, I just handed in my paperwork concerning that.

Not that I don't love Japan and the area that I live in, but... I already stated my reasons why I wouldn't continue. ^^;
lazchan: (sleepy kitty)
I have to wonder how bad I really looked at work today for two teachers to ask me if I had a fever, realize I probably did have a fever, and offer to take me home. One came up to me, point blank and said "You look terrible. You should go home." Reassured me about sick days and it how it was okay and that I shouldn't worry. That I needed to rest.


The tonsillitis is mostly better now. It doesn't hurt quite as much to swallow anymore. I think that I caught the tag end of something else, though. Go me.
lazchan: (smiletoconfuse)
I think I've made my decision about re-contracting for JET.

I am pretty sure I won't--I've been debating why I'd stay and the most reason lean towards I &hearts Japan and not so much about teaching itself. I adore my students and the people I work with, but frankly--I suck at teaching. LOL

I wish I could be better at it, that I had more drive, but I still get nervous standing in front of people and teaching, trying to speak English with them (this goes double at my visiting school, where I see the classes so little). The students are hilarious and smart and I want to see all my of my 2nd years graduate high school, but... it's simply not the type of job I excell at and I hate feeling like I'm doing a bad job.

If it was just Japan, I'd stay here and enjoy it and visit everything I could in it. But teaching was never something I had studied, had planned to do, because fear of public speaking held me back a great deal. I struggle with making lesson plans and adopting them to the class and I am never sure how much English to use and how much explanation is needed.

I honestly wonder if the students learn anything at all from me. :P And it's not like I can ask the teachers I work with... *grins* because they're unfailingly polite and won't tell you that you're doing a bad job and if you say you are doing a bad job, they think you're being humble.

But I've thought about this for quite a while and went back and forth with several classes, days of work and plotting it against another year of it. I honestly think I'll be doing the kids and the program a disservice if I stay another year with my limited ability to teach.

I love the program and this has been one of the best, most unique experiences of my life and probably nothing can match it. But I'm also getting older and need to get started in the career I studied for, as well as furthering my own education in it. I don't just mean graduate school, but keeping up on the latest techniques, news and so forth.

Teaching was never my absolute thing and I realize now how badly I do at it. *laughs* So yeah... I think when it's time to sign the paperwork, I will regretfully decide to not re-contract.

Unless the teachers beg me or something. *laughs*
lazchan: (Default)
Okay, since I've finally hit my picture limit for LJ...about
half my photos are on LJ, then I have the entire set up on my Snapfish account. Guess I should do that whole trip update thing. XD Perhaps with a photo or two to highlight things? XD

Well, to start off--the trip was from Fukuoka to Tokyo. Had some lovely fun with the metal detectors, as I said before, but after that--we were free in Tokyo and to um....find our place. Took a bit of finding (although the town was easy) and two residents and a few side streets later, we were at our hostel. Yayyyy for hostels and thumping down luggage. The was on the 22nd. Our first of many days in Tokyo.

underneath the cut, some info and pictures )
lazchan: (bones)
I'll post a few tidbits of the trip things until I get pictures, starting with the airport stuff. (No, trust me--it was actually kinda funny XDD Bonnie and I were both giggling over it)

Well, I have this bad habit of change piling up. It's actually really easy to do in Japan, because the smallest bill is a 1,000 yen (about $10US) and so change just accumulates. Well, I had my change purse and a bunch of change in the bottom of my bag and it set off the alarms. *grins* They had me take out all my change and the airport lady broke my change purse getting it all back in. ;_;

That was the mild case of "gee, too much change" airport thing.

On the way back, my drink cup set off the alarms (they guy even smelled it to make sure it wasn't alcohol or something (lol) and then my keyblade keychain set off the alarm. That just made me laugh and laugh.

I guess they thought it was a dangerous weapon? xP
lazchan: (Default)
If it wasn't for the spiders (and other creepy bugs) inside my house, Japan would be awesome.

*shudders and stares at spider as it crawls across futon*

lazchan: (someonelikeme)
Okay, so here we go with the weekend report of fun traveling stuff.

I met [ profile] baine at the bus station on Friday, late--SO glad the buses ran later than websites and other info said, we got back to my house pretty late. Still ended up talking a bit and tried to plan out what we were going to do the next day. Also had Taiyaki (the fish shaped bakery thing, usually filled with red bean paste, but we got a chocolate one)

Our first trip was to Mt. Aso, which was a ways away, but after several bus rides, train rides and more bus rides, we made our way up the ropeway to some beautiful scenery. There were tons of little stands up the way, and as we were browsing a sulfur stand (o.O) there was this "gajin, gajin!" We had to muffle our laughter and headed further up the slope. It was just amazing to see! Behind the cut are the pictures from Aso. Beware, there are a lot of them. ^^;

mtaso )

We went to Kumamoto City afterward and just bummed around town and tried to figure out what we were going to do when we came back. We traveled through several Arcades and got some dinner before heading back.

The next day was a three hour bus ride to Miyazaki City and to the infamous SeaGaia, an indoor beach. It's actually really cool--there are three water slides, different swimming pools and the 'ocean' beach area, with real waves that wash over you. There is even more major waves where people can surf on. Yes, I have pictures of that as well, and even a video of the surfing. It's not the best video (taken with my camera from a distance) but it shows the waves and stuff.

more pictures )

The third day (and final day, *sniff*) we went to Kumamoto City, to see the Kumamoto Castle, various shrines and famous homes of feudal lords, plus--shopping. =D Today involved a lot of walking, a few wrong turns and some awesome priests at one of the shrines. (They gave us a lift to the place we walked RIGHT BY earlier, go us and Laz's bad sense of direction and some confusing signs). The castle was pretty neat, I tell ya. It was mostly destroyed during Japan's last civil war, but restored beautifully. There were several buildings along the way to walk in (some of which had the original flooring, so no shoes and some creepy, creaky floors and narrow stairs...XD)

It was cool to imagine people living there and just existing. Some of the exhibits inside were cool--muskets and swords and clothing, boxes and daily living stuff--didn't take pictures of the stuff inside (I don't think it was allowed) but by the time we got to the top, we took pictures of the surrounding area. It was just gorgeous.

We walked around until we finally found the Gyotobei mansion, and it was just cool to walk around this place and I got a ton of pictures for it.

Afterward, we went to the Kamitori Arcarde, wandered a bit, hit Tsuraya (huge department store, we didnt even see it all) and had some yummy tempura lunch in one of the basement areas. We checked a few places to come back to buy more stuff, then we headed to the Shimatori Arcade where we had the Taiyaki we had the other day. (SO yummy, I want more of it. XDD)

[ profile] baine had to head back at 5, so we bought some shoes for our jobs and headed back to the bus station. It was a total blast, if exhausting and I can't wait to visit her in Sasebo in a couple of weeks. It's so quiet without her here! XD But I really did have fun and I have a day to recover before I go back to the school, where it's Sports Festival week and I get to cheer on the students. Whoot.

pictures of Kumamoto Castle area )
lazchan: (Default)
Well, back from the land of not being able to use LJ... and many other sites as well. Woot! I again have my internet (at home, no less) and it only took me the month that it took everyone else. *laughs*

I'll start using my camera more, I promise and I'll post pictures of various areas in Japan, my neighborhood (which isn't all that photo worthy, but nearby there are apparently amazing spots) and my students.

Japan is rather nice--a bit humid and hot at the moment, and I swear the bugs are mutant bugs. They're huge and scary (the spiders are the size of my hand and more) and are inside my house. Tomorrow or Saturday I'm prevailing upon my neighbor to help me set off a bug bomb to kill any creatures inside my house but me. :)

My students are a mixed bag. Some are shy, some are perverts and then there are sweethearts--I've been asked my age lots of times and if I have a boyfriend... *laughs* some are noisy and then there are the ones that won't say a word. It's a little daunting still and I get nervous, but the time in class goes by much faster than I thought it would, so here's hoping I can still make everything cool for them. (self intros are boring, yo) Next week is sports week at my main teaching school, so I don't teach, but I "must cheer" for the students. No problems for that, I think it'll be awesome.

It's really kinda neat here and I think adjusting will be so much easier now that I have my crack internet life back at home. Skype and cheap phone calls, here I come!

Here are the pictures of my house--at least a few of the rooms. There's a giant spider in one of my rooms, not opening the door out of fear of releasing it. XDDD But it's about the same as the others, which I have pictures of. I'll take pictures of the town soon and the surrounding area. :)

house pictures )
lazchan: (Default)
Alright all--

I'm in Japan and in Tokyo at the hotel. It's like... 5 something in the morning in Utah and I'm dead tired. More later.
lazchan: (Default)

I'll be heading off to Japan tomorrow--

(why I am still awake when I'm getting up so early in the morning is beyond me, but there it is)

-- and so my net will be ...sporadic to non-existent until I get it set up at my apartment. For when I do update my Japan stuff, it'll probably by at my livejournal account for that purpose.

[ profile] laz_japan

See you all soon!
lazchan: (someonelikeme)

I'm only hoping that it all works out, cause my visa application was incomplete, due to me not having the address of the place that I'll be working. I didn't even know the CITY until last night. >_>

*crosses fingers*


lazchan: (Default)

March 2014

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