Me in Japan: September 2003

   Rotary Youth Exchange student Dereck tells all of his trip to Japan for a year. Can you manage to figure out the typos???
Tuesday, September 30, 2003

Wow so Busy so tiered, all that practice is wearing me down to nothing, although i`m not losing the weight, just the energy. The sports festival is this weekend an should be amazing. I had the first practice in my event, centipede race, and that was a slow event, there is no talent in my little group. I think i kept switching legs from 1,2 to 2,1, the person behind me was trying to keep standing upright, and the two girls in the back were just trying to keep up, it didn't work. We only almost completely fell over once though.

anyhow i haven't updated my blog to recently because its been the same practice over and over, except today.

I`m off the the wonderfully world of studying, got many more kanji to learn, i`m up to 300 now

Friday, September 26, 2003

Japanese is coming.... slowly. I found a great game on the internet that helps you learn to read kanji and kana. I have learned to read all kana this week with about 60 kanji. It hasn't been a week yet even so i think its great. speaking is slowly progressing to one word sentances, not quite though. I still have to throw in a lot of english to say anything useful. I think in a month i'll have one word sentances down, I'm feeling optimistic. - The great game

Tuesday, September 23, 2003

Just got back form Ben`s school`s sports festaval, it was impressive. ;) his school is a newer tpe with less biuldings.3 or 4 that i saw. I took a couple pictures, but i still havn't got a place to put them yet, i think i might use my FTP at SAult Area High School, if i can get to it still. in october my host family is getting a Fiber internet conection and it will be easy to put up some pictures if i find a place to put them.

today is a holidy for the first day opf FAll so i"m jst bumming around. ttyl

Monday, September 22, 2003

that's Ben's blog there, an American from Pennsivania. He's RYE too but staying in a city some ways down a long road. Tomorrow I'm going down that road but I'm not sure if the map is gonna help.

Cya later, wonder how I'm getting down the road....... FIND OUT IN TOMORROW'S EPISODE!

oh, just found out the Japanese Maphia is 3 blocks down the street. Akuzuka i think is there name. thats cool. I havn't heard and gun shots, must use silencers......

3 blocks is a long ways away form here, 6 minutes by bike.

Finally, I!m feeling more like?@myself. No thanks to Chinese medicine, BLAHHHHHHHHHHH. I wish I`d had Rolaids to get rid of it quicker. I spent most of the day in the English office, but me and Daniel since were too loud and told to leave, also my permission to use the computer in the English office is gone. Maybe bob had a bad day, But I think my welcome has worn out. Oh well. There's a holiday for the fist day of Fall. No school, then back to more practice.

nothing really new since last because I was sick, but one good story. We end to a book store so Takashi could buy a book for school. I kinda kept close so that I could make sure we left at the same time. Well he when to check out and I stood staring at at least 10000 different manga selections. After the shook settled I noticed he was checking out so I started to walk to the counter. Next thing I knew he was gone, he had left to the parking lot for some reason. I looked around in the book section didn't see him. Then I when up stairs to see if he was looking at music and DVD's or something, what ever was upstairs. Nope not here, but I looked around at some of the old American music they had on a shelf. After seeing this girl behind the counter watch me as if I was some exhibit I walked over to teh DVD's. Nothing interesting, where's Takashi. Maybe over in that section with the blue partition with the Japanese kana Kana written on it.

As I walked over to the section I stared at the Japanese written there as if maybe it had some significance. Nothing really came to mind and I walked behind, not really noticing what was around me. After a couple steps I looked around. It was the biggest collection of porn I have ever thought possible. Quickly, because there were people all over the place watching my back, I did a 180 swing and out I went. That was really funny, because I could have swore that that Japanese was something important, but I shrugged it off. On my way down the stairs, I looked out the window and see Takashi walking across the street to a convenient store. I caught up and that day was over. Nothing exiting after. Maybe the wasabi candy that was not really as spicy as I thought, but still spicy.

Friday, September 19, 2003

According to my host father, you can`t buy antacid or Tylenol type things OTC. You have to go to a pharmacy. Although I could have swore that I saw them in a store somewhere, Rolaids even. Not Tylenol though. They really wanted to tack me to the hospital, but I finally got that out of their heads. I had to talk to someone\e that spoke both English and Japanese and explain that this was the infamous "Culture shock" that I was briefed on so many times at every conference.

amazing, but I have to say, that little paper was wrong, I got sick a week earlier than I should have is only week 3, it supposed to start on week 4. ;)

Thursday, September 18, 2003

BLAAHHHHH fever of 39.7 degrees celcius. (bad) glad i brought Tylenol, whish I'de brought Rolaids.

Wednesday, September 17, 2003

I@m so tired. why you ask? Let me tell you.

Once upon yesterday the school began training for the sports festavial, coming up on october 5th. Classes are cut to 40 minutes and 3 classes a day. the next 4 hours consist of dancing and human pirimid biulding. Today there was a human flower circle added to the mix. We get one break for water in the midle and that is a great thing after all that dancing and gymasic type stuff. AFter alll that training its time for cheering and marching. that goes on for about and hour i think, it`s hard to tell, i was too tried to find a clock today. We march at least 400m or so.

THe cheers are hard for me because i have no clue what they are saing and i doon`t have and words of anytype to read. Most of what comes out of my mouth is "i have no idea what you people are saying, but i`ll fake it anyway!" I say this to the rythem of the chant and go on to say other rediculus things that include a purple monkey eating a bannan, to birds in an egg, and the car is broke. I think sensei will give me the words tomarow so, good bye purple monkey. NO ONE can tell what i'm saying so it dosn't matter eatherway.

then, after all that work i have that darn stand biulding thing i volonteered to do, beats badmitton. Today was the last day for work, no painting, yay! speaking of witch they finally got the clue that just painting small bloches of paint ofer the small grinding marks was a bad idea. they decided to paint the whole poles. a little late but you got the idea now! This also confused me a little. On the first day of work, we brought out ALL the poles. on the second day we put half of them back, then today we broght all of them back out. WHY NOT LEAVE THEM OUT IN THE FIRST PLACE! save a day of work and add 40 minutes of sleep at home.oh well, i took more than m y share of cayying and doubled any load that i saw others taking, i like seeing them pick uip one rod as i pick up 3. THe bigger stuff, yea you need help, but a 4 foot pole that is less than 2 Lbs, i think you can take a couple. tomarow, we put together all�@ parts, YAY! that what i been waiting for!

Finally i get to bike home and read "Dreamcatcher" by Steven King. THat is a good book, i couldn`t stop reading for 250 pages. 3 days and i had 250 pages swallowed up. i`m on 457 now, and after this post i' going back in. Klutz just shot off some one`s foot and explaned the concept of killing 350 americans just to be safe than sorry. good book. We have to read every morning and the library has 3 books in english. i hav eto go buy books at the store that has an english selection. It is located on the top flor in the far cornor near the exit stairs. There are about 200 books there,... maybe. most are Learn english the easy way books.


Monday, September 15, 2003

WOw what a weekend. First a typhoon was "suposed" to hit kumamoto. I lasted all of 3 minutes, ligth rain, no wind. Its worse in florada everyday. BUt it was downgraded on friday to not hit kumamoto with any force. BUMMER!

BUt that ment we could still go fishing! I caught 4 fish. a meadium size, a puffer fish and 2 littles ones. I caugt both the little ones at once, the hooks that are used have 2 separate hooks on them with 2 different pieces of bait. It weird thing is that the hook wasn`t in theeir mouth, it was in their sides. I think there must have been a school of them down there and when i was pulloin gup my line i hooked them both. It was really funny, i couldn`t believ it.

Takashi, Iyaka, and my host mother got sea sick. they all tryed to just sleep the whole time. My host mother was the only one to caugh and run to the sid eof teh boat. I don`t think she curled though. Masashi was board, but i think he caught one fish. My host father caught a couple, and the guy driving the boat caught a whole bunch of bigg `uns. after fishing we went to my host mothers parents house and her father sliced them up and cooked/didn`t cook them. My host father gutted them befor we went there though, he seems to have quite the experiance, and enjoys it.

the boat wasn`t that big, but it was long. maybe 6 feet wide, but 30 long. it motors along at good speed. I wanted to take a picture but i didn`t have a camera with me, left my palm at the hotel so it would get wet.

The next day was a festaval were schools parade around the streets of kumamoto with a horse and sing, kinda. Everyone wears elaborate costums and walks in formation down the street. they cross a major intersection, where we sat/stood, they can`t stop or rerout the road because its 3 lanes in bothe directions. Police had to direct the traffic, sto the parade, let beople cross the sidewalks, resume parade, so on and so forth. onne cop had a dongal for controlling stoplights, that was the coolest thing ever. I just couldn stop thinking about that detonator from Armegedon the movie. You know, where "Henry" has to manually detonate the bomb. It was cool, but masashi was climing on a bottle return can thing and fell down. He hit his head and we left, he was ok after going to go the bathroom and eating some icecream. I wans`t in the parade thing, just got to watch. The event was already full.

I broke out a cd with Half life, a computer game. Masashi can stop playing it. all the time hes getting to be good now, just playing aganst the computer.

NOthing much more, Judo starts next week i think in school. I have been watching the big tournement on TV. It looks fun i think.


Friday, September 12, 2003

Today there was suposed to be a huge typhoon going through kyushu bot no. The typhoon didn`t even come close, a real bummer. It shrunk faster then the news thought it would and mised us, no rain, no wind, no cars flying in the air. BOaring.

TOday i found out m y school has a dormatory. 120 person capasity. they hace a small cafeteria and i was invited for lunch there. It was cury, and it was soooo good. nice and spicy. I MUST learn to make it.

Fishing is probly still off for the weekend though, the typhoon is still out off the coast maybe 50 or so miles.

short blog for an update on the typhoon

Thursday, September 11, 2003

WEEE a typhoon is comming, and it already hit okinawa. It was the biggest in 30 years, on its way to kyushu next. (it should just hit it a little ways. JJust enought to get Kumamoto but not oita. I can`t wait

Wednesday, September 10, 2003

This year and last year are really not that different, class wise. I have 10 classes this year. Engrish, math, japanese, PE, health, Information(computer apps 2 stuff), C programming, Electronics, Social studys, Art. They arn`t all on the same day though, we has 6 classes a day and they mix up all week insted of all day. My school is so sports oreanted, we have PE 4 times a week but math only 3. I think PE has the most classes a week. Because my school is a technical sports oreantated school the classes are so easy, there is never homework that i know of. I have to draw a design for a box this weekend for art, thats all. I`m passing Engrish. My english teach can barly speak english, but we have an ALT teacher from america, Dan, that floats around the school to all teh classes. PE is dancing and gymnastics, Like exercise dances and human pirimids. Math is all stuff i did last year, almost. there is one little thing i never seen before but i understand it, a thing with trinomials and squareroots. The basic corse work is easy, but they made me equvilent to a sophmore. January i become a Junior. Oh well.

The school is huge, but only 1200 students. the biuldings are 2 times the size of the high school in da soo. but there are big 'holes' in the middle of the biuldings. The campus is at least 3 times the size of sault high. there are 9 buildings. All sections of the school are cut up, 10 secions; Information, machine, interior,.... I don`t know the rest, but there are ten. I`ll figure out pictures or my school eventually whit all the rest of them.

No shoes in school, everyone whers slippers. blue 1st year, red 2nd year, green 3rd year. Japanes schoolls gor 6, 3, 3 insted of 6, 2, 4 or 3, 2, 3, 4 if you got to mickinly/washington. I think thats clear.... i think.... no janitors, everyday students cleen school. it takes about 10 minutes, but i`m outside on the far side of campus and you have to wear shoes when you go outside the 'school'. It takes my group about 15 minutes. I think that does it for now.

Oh, my dear friend ben, You`d fit in so well, watch your head, the doors really hurt after 3. 5 people i seen brin gthere gameboy advance to school and play all day long with a few books open on there desk to look as if paying attention. The morning consists of Mario kart multi player. and others use cell phones and play games on them. others, they Sleep.

For the sports Festaval that is coming up next month, I`m helpign build the stands for my class. They are all metall and seat 120 students. We also have a moving words thing i`m in, I`m not sure what that is yet though. The fram has to be ground in places because of rust and then panted. painted not-ugly,not-not-ugly-green, i think that is the tecnical term for it. Its really hot out there workign on them things, but today it was cloudy and it was only around 92 drgrees Farenhieght.

In december there is a school trip to northern Japan, all the school flys up there to go sking and stuff, i just found out about it today. Its not tooooo expensive either. Hi mom! Have i told you "I love you" lately?

SO much going on it`s hard to remember. O yea, I also take chemestry, THe teacher is so awsome!!!!!! SHe tryed to teach chemestry in Engligh out of the blue and that didn`t work at all, I took a picture of her success at writing the date. also for punishment for not doing homework, she make students eat citric acid. Its so great! HTey walk away with one HUGE pucker. Also for not doing summer vacation homework she took a Kendo stick and hit them on the head 10 times. SO great. Last class she made a mistake and the watter turned red. When she noticed, she dumped it out very quickly and seid "oh look, it turned blue just like we pridicted"..... You had to be there.

So long form japan, talk to you next timei feel i can fill a page. this weekend i`m going fishing on a small ship and staying the night on it. THats all i know, i gues it must be good size.

Friday, September 05, 2003

Ahhhh, got hit by my first car today. that was fun. The guy did it on perpous too. But it was just my read end of my bike, no damage. I thought it was funny accually, I was told i would probly get hit buy a car ad i didn`t think it would happen. Oh well.

The US Japan Embasy registration website is still down. I got to get that done some how, someday.

PE is weird, we have to dance. It`s kinda funny really, its like an exersize dance that you don`t move around. Just stay in formation. It`s a long time to do too. So annoying and i think we hav eto do it in the sports festavel next�@Month. I hope not, itsa bad, i stick you like 3 sore thumbs. 1 I`m american; 2 i`m big; 3 I don`t know the steps!

So much happes every day and i can`t tpy it up immediatly and then BAM! forgotten. I have my `locker` finally. one is for shoes outside and the other is for whatever and it`s near my class. You can`t fit much inside though. Mayby the gym chlothes but that`s it. I have 2 pair of shoes for gym only, a pair of slippers for school, and regular shoes for everywhere else. So many shoes. OH! my dress shoes for what ever. I have a Uniform to ware every day, which has yet to come to me. A gym uniform, which i have half of. and then a set of cloths for Badmitton kurabu. Lots of clothes. minus the dress shoes, all come to school evcery day pritty much. some things i leave there though. All my books stay at school pritty much. My school has a MAJOR bias to sports and there is very little homework. VERY rare in Japan. My school has a tone of money in sports equipment and probly Band too. They were the best in japan for 2 years but last year they were 4th. The computer lab is all new and they left the old one in a seprate place. It`s so�@nice to sit in air conditioning for a short time. none of the school has AC exept the teachers rooms and the computer lab.

I got the school down farly well, but i don`t know where the classes are really. I do know most of the teachers offices. They all have AC =)

starting next week or the week after school is cut in half so students can practice fo tthe sports festavial. I don`t know if we have to stay on campus of not. One day i have to biuld bleachers for my class. 2 students volenteered, including me and one lost a lottery. no one wanted to voleenteer to do anything antill 5 minutes after school got out then people were like, Ok i`ll do it lets go!

After school i hav eot go to the other sid eof the school�@and cleen part of the side walk and pull grass and all that happey stuff. Its weird they don`t have people do it , the students and teachers(some) have to clean everything.

I`m in a badmittion club for after school, its 3.5 hours long and i get home at 7:30 every day. It`s hadrd work and i hav eto run around the school. today it was only once cuz i had to go find my shoes but it`s probly like 3 or 4 times. It`s a hude school and takes forever for the people who are fit to run, It takes a lot of effort but i can do it. ANd the teacher rides a bike to make sure you don`t slack. but its a breif thing and after, you can go back to the badmittion. There are 3 nets and 25 boys, 15 girls. Boys get half and girls get half. I`m still not sure how that worked but boys got 2 nets. My right arm hurts form the 2 hours of just swinging the racket. not bird, not opponet, no net, just swinging for 2 hours. BLAHHHHHHH!

My school inspects Uniforms and everyone goes to the gym and sits. They get told somthing and then ther is some stratigy to siting and waiting. I kinda go tdiplomatic immunity for my hair and eyes. They also gave me a pass because my unifor wasn`t in yet. they checked my fingernails and seid ok, i geuss you can go. So many people faild inspection. theyt hav eot cleen in the morning and cleen after school. Diplomatic imunity is great i get so many easy ways out. No homeowrk, really. but thats not unusuall in this school that favors sports. If i do somthign wrong i get told, hey don`t do that. Plus If i pretend i don`t understand, BAM infinite possibilitys. I don`t have to do this big bow type thing to all the uper classmen eather, they made�@me a saphmore when i should be a second year student. but i`ll end up a Junior when january comes around. weee hoooo. Blue red green and the slipper colors that indicate calss. Its niffty.

of course i`m starting in the middle of the year and its funny that all the classes are doing things that i know. C programmikng is so easy. ITs just variably manipilation and display stuff. Electronics is just oms an dresistance and a little bit of curcuty, that the teacher really dosn`t understand. I see him make so many mistakes and i just sut up. I know that its the same as america because they are correct in the book. Mistakes like drawing diods and batterys backwards. Misslabling parts. It`s kind funny. The English teacher can barly speack english, but i thinkshe is really shy, cuz she has to read everythign 2 times and then say it very quite, like i`m judging her. I geuss i am. But its good, she got her licence so she must know what it takes. Dan is awsome, his always speacking ENglish and making staff and students learn english while in the halls a nd stuff. everyone knows and loves danial sensei.

So much happend this week and i know i forgot to writew it all but i will have much more to talk about in future weeks.

by the way, 96 degrees every day minumin mostly.

Ahhhh, got hit by my first car today. that was fun. The guy did it on perpous too. But it was just my read end of my bike, no damage. I thought it was funny accually, I was told i would probly get hit buy a car ad i didn`t think it would happen. Oh well.

The US Japan Embasy registration website is still down. I got to get that done some how, someday.

PE is weird, we have to dance. It`s kinda funny really, its like an exersize dance that you don`t move around. Just stay in formation. It`s a long time to do too. So annoying and i think we hav eto do it in the sports festavel next

Monday, September 01, 2003

First day of going to school. i got a ride to school and the traffic was really bad. we got all red lights and there were so many cars. Still got there on time. The school is very big, but only 1200 students. My home room is ver far from the front and on the sencond floor. My teacher speaks very little english and carrys a referance book. TEh are mostly boys in my school 80% i think.

I had to give a spech in front of all the school in the massive gym. It wasn`t bad at all. everyone clapped and i was last to speak minuse the closing speech by the disiplanary specialist person. If you are bad you have to cleen the school in the morning. today was a special day that everyone cleened the school and it was the opening cerimony. really boring accually. I had to get up at 6:30 to eat and go but school started at 8:30.

I was in the room to get my desk position, then i left for a tour of the section that i was in. TEh equipment in the shops must be 3 years old but the CNC is a masive machine. Its bigger than anything at persision edge but probly not accuarte and very slow. it looks very old, but its good enough. the automotive is very small room. Teh new computer lab is awsome, its the bet room in the school. it has very nice AC and it feels so god after being hot all day. the screens are all flat and have fast prossecors with loads of ram, they are slow still though.

nothing has AC except the teacher rooms and the computer room. VERY HOT!!!!!!!! it is really bad. the cent of the building is open to the sky and its vey hot everywhere you go.

i ate lunch in the room with some student`s who`s names i can`t remember, so many names. afte lunch i left again and whent to the english teacher`s room. It has AC, i love it. i stayed there and talked wiht english teachers and a few peopl. the time when fast and finnally i when to homeroom and got my stuff then dan showed me the clubs that were in session. Not many because of summer tests. they have to study during vacationa and the get tessted on it on the first days of school. I did see the major sports and Judo. Also Kendo was cool, but they were only warming up and it was hot so we when and saw thew famous highschool basball team.

I got my slippers and my bags that are for the school and rode my bike home. whitch i found out was parked in the teachers bike parking section thing. there are hunderads of bikes all over the place.

tomarow will nto be too differant, school really starts wendsday. then i will have 10 classed, but only 6 a day and a club. i should get home around 7PM from then on.

yoroshikun onigimas!


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