A day in my life.
In the last year I have had a lot of comments about my life in Japan. People wanting to know what it's like, and what I am up to. My family thinks I am on an extended vacation; travelling, eating, enjoying life. But I actually do work, and here is the proof. I picked a random day, although due to the time of year it is a little unique, I'm not always giving goodbye speeches. But it is still a pretty good insight into my daily life. Enjoy.
6:45 - snoozed alarm
6:55 - woke up, ate breakfast, got dressed, picked my futon up off of the tatami
7:40 - left for school. Stopped at a convenience store along the way for iced tea
8:20 – arrived at school and was told by the head English teacher that, not only will I be giving my farewell lunch time speech today (2 days earlier than expected), but I will also need a speech for the staff (in Japanese of course). This is usually the time when I am told about unexpected schedule changes, cancelled classes, school starting 5 mins earlier than the time I have just arrived at, that kind of thing.
1st period – Spare. Did my homework for today’s tutoring; wrote a description of a few belly dancing moves in Japanese, and wrote sentences using adverbs that I desperately want to learn. Still not sticking.
2nd period – 2nd grade high level class. First up was listening practice, same as always. Next was the Speaking 1 section of the textbook (phone conversations); the students and I used old mobiles to ‘call’ each other and make plans. We spent most of our time waiting for students to volunteer for this activity.
3rd period – 3rd grade low level class. Q&A warm up; I asked questions to the students using the grammar ‘have you –‘ or ‘ask someone to do something.’ Next we sung We Are Golden by Mika. The high pitched voice got a giggle from the class. Speaking 3 of the textbook (asking directions using a train station map); students had to individually practice the dialogue with me in front of the entire class. The students saw this as a form of torture.
4th period – 2nd grade high level, a repeat of the previous class plan. There was no shortage of volunteers in this class. The students were practically jumping out of their seats for the chance to get a sticker.
Lunch – I had to eat in the staffroom due to my impending speech. I was joined by the head English teacher. We talked about summer vacation plans and Korean food. Speech time quickly came around. My hands shook throughout the entire speech. Luckily we were in the announcement room, so only the head English teacher and the two daily announcers were present to witness me. Done and dusted!
Cleaning Time – The same girl as always said hello to me way too enthusiastically. I sat and pretended to be busy. Every time I have asked to help clean at this school they have replied with a polite ‘you don’t have to.’ So I have resided myself to sitting.
5th period – Spare. I tried to memorize my Japanese speech. Finished off my homework. Talked a little to some teachers in the staffroom. Now that I am leaving this school, many teachers seem to be embracing the last chance conversation.
6th period - cancelled for staff meeting.
Staff meeting – Gave my goodbye speech. Meeting adjourned. Didn’t realise this was a meeting just to hear my speech. Glad that I didn’t know that before I gave my speech.
Tutoring – We talked about the weekend and belly dancing. I learned one new grammar; I really hate grammar. .
6:20 – Made it back home. Had a 15 min power nap then left for my neighbour’s house. We had a farewell dinner for our neighbourhood group. Three English teachers are leaving. Every year some people leave and new people come. We live a life of making friends and saying goodbyes. The food is unbelievable!
10pm – Came home again. Showered, laid out my futon under the AC once more, wrote this diary entry and went to sleep.