Japan Earthquakes 2011

Alright, so if you didn’t know already… Japan still gets a lot of  earthquakes.  Being in a mountain basin somewhat cushions you from the effects, but that doesn’t protect us from all of them.  This is a pretty awesome YouTube video visualizing the earthquakes in Japan over the past year.  If you’re one for stats, this is *your* video.


Good Karma

Stopped at the crosswalk and saw this guy squirming around on the ‘Walk’ button. Looks like this guy got a little confused climbing up this telephone pole. Picture is of the little guy zipping up a nearby tree that I transferred it too. It only stopped briefly enough for me to snap this photo and … Continue reading

Challenges abound

So I’ve definitely been meeting my fair share of challenges over here in Japan.  Seems like something new pops up every week from trying to borrow a wrench at a bicycle shop and getting berated to getting into a shouting match with my friend over her driving after drinking (loooong story – maybe I’ll devote a blog entry to it).  I run into challenges in the classroom too when trying to figure out ways to teach the kids in new, fun ways.
Luckily, when things go well in the classroom, it makes me forget about everything.  The feeling of fulfillment I get from leaving an excited, happy class of students is super rewarding.  I did a lot of research before I came over and I was warned on several accounts that I would be challenged mentally/socially/even physically as an ALT.  Unfortunately, I couldn’t possibly imagine these kind of situations on this level.
However, I will leave you with a great bit of advice from a former ALT that I has helped me out.  “Challenges in life come at all times and must be treated as opportunities to learn,  These opportunities help discover strengths that one never knew one had.”


Tomatoes! – Day 1

I’ve been watching my ES students all week plant vegetables in front of the school. It’s really making me want some fresh tomatoes. Tomatoes are stupid expensive in Japan; roughly a plum sized tomato will run you about 150¥! I tried making salsa once and it cost me over $20! Blah… Anyways, here’s to some … Continue reading