Saturday, October 27, 2007


The other day I had a very enlightening conversation with my Kouchou Sensei (Principal). He informed me in the restroom that he would be coming to my next class. I didn’t understand what he said until about 4 minutes later (he talks fast and in anither language to boot). He arrived and waited on the class to come. Unfortunately they did not come. We chatted (more like speaking on his part and grunting on mine). He told me they weren’t coming and we should go back to the teacher’s room. I followed him and sat down at my desk. He pulled up a chair and we shot the bull for about 45 minutes. It was the longest conversation that I have had in Japanese. We talked about fall in Japan, apples, salted fish, salmon, hot coffee, iced coffee, winter in Japan, snowboarding being a young man’s sport and skiing and old man’s sport. We talked about ramen, miso soup and salmon eggs (I told him that in America we used them for fish bait and he laughed and said he loved to eat them. I don’t really love to eat them (they are really juicy in your mouth) but I have definitely eaten worse things.) I really enjoyed the chance to talk to him and he helped me with my Japanese. I have had a hard time adjusting to the work environment here in Japan. It seems much more serious to me. I do have a skewed view of things because I don’t understand what people are talking about most of the time so I am sure it seems much more serious than it actually is.

I have been training for a half marathon on November 11th. I hope that I don’t completely fall apart. It is strange to me to be away from the college running scene and away from so many of my running friends. I usually run on my own unless I plan far ahead and invite some friends along. I am really excited about racing again and I think it will be interesting to race among so many Japanese people. In the races I have run I usually stick out because of my height and frame. I can only imagine what it will be like to be running in a pack of Japanese runners. I think that I might win the awkward award and I will definitely be a lock for the Clydesdale award. I also plan on running an ekiden (a Japanese style relay race) on the day after Thanksgiving. We get Nov. 23rd off of school and a friend of a friend asked us to join their team. From the results last year I think that we might have a shot at winning. Because of the races I have planned I decided to purchase some racing shoes. I looked all over town and on several Japanese websites but I was hard pressed to find anything that was remotely close to my size. I had to order shoes from the US. I was hesitant to do so when I noticed that it would cost around $60 for shipping only (the shoes weigh less than a pound). I decided to ship them to my parents house and then ask them to ship them to me (hopefully I can weasel my way into having them send me some goodies too.)

If you happened to drive by Kencho a couple of nights ago and caught a glimpse of someone walking beside their scooter, it was probably me. I have recently noticed that my scooter hasn’t been quite itself. I decided to take it for a walk. It broke the leash that I put it on, so from then on I had to push it. We strolled along enjoying the evening air. I stopped to let some children pet it but they weren’t interested (neither were their parents from the scowls they gave me). When we got back home I tried to start it up but no luck. The next morning I had to leave her at home. She kept whining when I tried to start her. I rode my bike to school and when I came back I walked her down to the gas station. Have you ever walked a scooter into a gas station? The looks that I received were interesting to say the least. I even tried to sit on it and get a rolling start so it looked like I was pulling in. No luck. Fred Flintstone must have been really strong to build up any kind of speed in his car because after three seconds of “Flintstoning it” I was exhausted. I got off and accepted the walk of shame to the nearest pump. As you may have guessed some delicious fuel was all she needed. Maybe I should get the fuel gauge fixed, along with the odometer and the speedometer.

1 comment:

Sammie said...

hahaha, I have no gas guage either, but I'm not sure I could manage without an odometer. You better just fill up every day to be on the safe side. ;)