Thursday, May 26, 2005

One more night to go...

Well, apparently it's already been 6 nights since I started my stay at the Washington Hotel... went by pretty quick. Tonight will be the last night of my stay as I move in to my apartment at some point tomorrow.
I'll start bringing my stuff back to the office today since I have to check out tomorrow by 10 but I'm not sure when I actually get the keys to my place. It'll be nice to finally get a permanent residence, the Washington is nice but the room's a little crowded with my 1 year's worth of stuff.

So I taught my first full day all by myself yesterday and it went well... they're taking it easy on me as I only have 4 classes... but Saturdays I'm into the thick of it with 6 so that'll be my first test. I'm really enjoying it, the students are great though I must admit the High Schoolers are a little too shy for my liking, hopefully they'll warm up to me with time. The Japanese staff at the school is great, we help each other out all the time... they'll ask me some questions about what a native speaker would say in this situation and I'll get their advice on lesson prep or whatever... works well. I'm also enjoying the company of the 2 Foreign Teachers on staff... Stacy from Clearwater, B.C. and Scott from Australia... they're a hoot and are helping me settle in nicely.

Allow me to clear up a rumour or two about Japan...
1. Japan is Expensive
NOT! I guess maybe living in Tokyo would be expensive but then again so would living in Paris or London, do not make the generalization that it's expensive throughout the country. I'm able to buy more than I can eat for dinner for around 8-9$... and they have 100 Yen stores (Dollar stores) that sell everything from stationery to bathroom fittings to organizers... I'll be a frequent customer my first few days after I move in for sure. As long as you have a little courage and don't zero in on the places with an English menu, you can eat very cheap in Utsunomiya.

2. All Japanese food includes raw fish of some kind
NOPE! Raw fish is called sashimi... sushi is something different, essentially meant to describe the rice and presentation of the food... and I've actually met some Japanese people who do not like fish... so there! One of the main staples here is noodles, which are made any of a hundred different ways. The meat here can be scarce but it's certainly not non-existent. With the Japanese adventures into different parts of the world during WWII, they brought back allot of foreign foods which have been incorporated. For example, I've had Japanese Curry, and Gioza (Pot-stickers introduced from China for which Utsunomiya are famous)

So anyway, I think I'll put around the Net a little bit before heading in to Work. Take care, ttyl.

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Blogger Hanuman1960 said...

Hi Michel!

I'm really looking forward to reading your daily postings!

I have a question about the food. Would it be hard for a vegetarian to eat in Japan? That's what I've always heard!

Take care!

8:27 PM  
Blogger Michel Lafleur said...

YES! I was in fact just speaking with my coworker Scott-sensei about that today. He was a vegetarian for a few years before he came to Japan but found it too difficult. It seems everything is either cooked in or contains broth from some animal... but I guess if you make most of your own food, it would'nt be an issue. not quite sure yet how much vegetables are here... I just moved in to my place tonight.

8:22 AM  

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