Thursday, September 07, 2006

on the way to Naha yesterday i was passed by an ambulance. The lights were on and the sirens were blaring. I would like to say that it wheezed past me in a disjointed cacophony. It's good imagery. But this is Okinawa and no ambulance has ever "wheezed" past me. They have gone slightly faster than the average speed, and they have slowed down at traffic lights. Yesterday, the ambulance was just a couple of cars ahead of me and going slower than the cars around it. It was obvious because the cars around it where trying to slow down so that they wouldn't be overtaking the ambulance and possibly embarassing the driver. i'm sure lives are saved in a timely fashion. Rushing is not in the vocabulary.

the schools is in a frenzy. the pre-undokai frenzy in which i am trying desperately not to get caught. on tuesday, when the school was practicing eisa in the gym, i went home to take a nap; on wednedsay, when girls were outside dancing and boys inside practicing with bo, i was profusely sweating in my car on the way back from Naha. Today, i won't be so lucky. Today, i will join in the "folk dancing." At least it'll be the same as last year, and i won't have to do too much thinking.

after undokai preporations, i will practice for the speech contest with two students. They're both 3rd graders and good students. One has good pronounciation but is quiet and lacks confidence. The other speaks fast, loud, but is missing "m" "b" and "v" in most words. I enjoy the practices but they are tiring. I try to remind myself, whenever i get slightly frustrated with them, that they are memorizing a 350 word speech in English majority of which they don't understand.

I have ordered two books that might help me cook Japanese. One is full of pictures and has simple recipes for bento lunches. And the other is a dictionary of Japanese food; no pictures, just descriptions and explanations of all foods and ingredients that might be considered japanese. btw, i learned that if a food can't be eaten with chopsticks or drunk from a bowl, it is not considered Japanese. I think my new goal for being here will be to create good looking bento boxes. Should be fun. Am glad i canceled school lunch because now i have to make my own and sandwiches can get boring after a while.

A young female student teacher will be working with me in English classes starting next week. She speaks English! She's been here since Monday, but hasn't had much to do with classes yet since we had final tests and then they had to be given back. Today, she observed the three classes we taught. I'm really glad they went well because sometimes they don't, and it would not have been a good observation. But we had really good classes today--i can tell 'cause my larigintis started bothering me. I should go see a doctor. My voice goes hoarse after two class periods.

Interesting thing about tiny cafes in the middle of the jungles. By the time one finds them, one won't care that they only serve one dish. It's usually a really tasty dish, though.

On the agenda--absentee voting 2006. A few things are at stake. In Wisconsin, for example, a referendum is being voted on that would push for an amendment to the constitution banning gay marriage. Irritating.
So, if you're like me, an American living abroad, Get the info and the forms and Vote!

Been watching the 2nd season of "Lost." Finally got my hands on all 24 episodes. well actually they arrived in my mailbox in a pink envelope, thanx to Perry. I had seen up until episode 13, and am now on 18. Slowed down after watching several in 2 days to prolong the process. Intense.

Also, I highly recommend renting "The Edukators," a german film. Watch it with a few friends and then discuss it. The movie spun David, Ben and i into an hour long conversation.
Also, "Kontrol" is a cool hungarian film that takes place entirely underground in Budapest's metro system. Slightly allegorical but not heavyhanded.
Ben brought over 30 films from Indonesia--we have been slowly watching them. Some don't work on my laptop. Unfortunate.

Am reading "The History of Love" by Nicole Krause. I haven't finished it yet but want to re-read it already. That very rarely happens to me. The words in this book are making me stumble through my beliefs. They're also bringing up emotions that i don't always want to feel on a school night. Remarkable.

I feel unusual. I think we should go outside.
if you know where this quote is from, then you know exactly how i feel.



Craig Mauelshagen said...

I watched the Edukators back in scotland before I came! I really liked it, made me wonder what other good european films I have been missing while watching all those hollywood blockbusters.

-e said...

it was a great movie. and Ben has mentioned it before, so i knew i'd most likely like it. i miss being able to rent foreign movies. glad he brought some. want to go to thailand or indonesia just so i can come back with a bunch of foreign films i can't watch here.

Kevin Thomas Hurley said...

Hey, well the referendum here in Sconsin doesn't only have to do with gay marriage it also stops anything outside of marriage of a man and woman so rights held by civil union and such also go down the tubes if it passes. So silly, Sconsin already has a law saying husband and wife, totally shady situation. When do we get to start exchanging penpal info??