Nothing of interest happened on the 25th. As per expectation. I finished school (had no classes), then went to the doctor, then ate dinner, then vegged until I slept. Possibly there was grocery shopping? If so, that’s the most interesting event.
The 26th was fun. I taught at Eshin. I had the fifth and sixth years. Honestly, it amazes me how much happier I am there. I used to dread Eshin days. It really was the invention of the character of Handsome President Oz that really got everything working for me over there.
I did a bit of talking about Halloween, which was tricky (because my Japanese isn’t good enough for a history lecture) and beyond that we just taught (nominally) what’s in the textbooks. The fifth years learned classes and the sixth years learned countries. Why “Art” is called “Arts and Crafts” in the Japanese textbook baffles me. Although it’s probably a more accurate translation of what one does in a Japanese (or American, really) art class, nobody can remember it. The kids also struggle to say “Home Economics”, a class whose absence in the US is a tragedy. I also love to baffle the kids by pointing out that in Japanese, Italy is pronounced Italia, and in Italian, it’s the same pronunciation, but in English, you have to say Italy. I dread the day when I have to tell them the truth about Germany.
A guy from JET who I liked (though I haven’t seen him in a year) is leaving Kagoshima. Presumably due to mental or social problems. He was very vague, but that’s the sense of his message and people’s responses. I certainly feel the mental pressure sometimes. To be honest, part of me wants to leave Satsuma myself, but, a lot of that is just misery from being sick and perpetually injured. I haven’t seen Kumei Sensei long enough to ask about going off of school lunches, so that’s still a thing.
After school, I went to the doctor, then to Eikaiwa, then to dinner. Tomoko came with Sam and me. It turns out that she knew the current owner of Kitchen Inoue’s dad. Wait, no, that was the lady in Eshin. Anyway, dinner was fun, but, by the time I got home, all there was time to do was vegging and bed. I didn’t get home until after eight.
I really enjoyed, at Eshin, a conversation I had with some of the office ladies. I’m sure that they have more formal jobs, but I don’t know what they are. We talked a lot about America and Japan and the difference in culture. I really think that Japan is a much healthier place to raise a child. I’d love to have kids in Japan through middle school, then take them to the US for high.
Feeling very lonely still. Emotionally, mentally, but also physically. Thankfully I do get randomly glomped. I remember in Hikone that I was so starved for human contact. I had friends and all, but it was like living in a bubble. You were never touched. In China, this isn’t a problem because people are bumping into you all of the time, but to spend a week or two without touching another human being is a REALLY unsettling experience for me. I remember in Kyoto, riding the bus near people who weren’t paying attention so that when the bus stopped quickly, somebody would briefly bump into me. Maybe growing up in a theater made me addicted to touch. Maybe it’s normal. I don’t know. Regardless, as much as skinship (I love that word) is critical for mental health and I’ve got plenty of it, I miss the specific feel of a romantic encounter. However, that’s not likely to happen any time soon.
My neck still hurts. I am almost entirely sure it’s muscular. Largely due to my constant high volume and the bizarre positions I sleep in.
I have a thing where I repeatedly count to 100 on my fingers using the system that Cooper Sensei taught me in high school. The earliest I can remember doing it was in art history at OU in about ‘08. I’ve taken to doing it any time when I’ve got a lot of time to kill and nothing to do. I could always remember that five minutes had 300 seconds from a bit on Garfield and Friends when . . . I think he had to go five minutes without eating? Well, all I had to do was to count to one hundred three times and things ought to have been five minutes. When I was younger, I’d usually come up short. Now I usually take longer. Anyway, it used to just be some dull little thing. Now, I’m constantly horrified that I’m sitting there, counting the moments remaining I have to live, and fiddling my fingers while doing nothing.