Because of school exams, it's slow for me... I'm not needed, too much. So... what to do? I study Kanji (Chinese-style alphabet) and practice writing it and learning the definitions. I get another 50 under my belt to take me up to exactly 150 learned.
I have no idea how to utilize this stuff in a sentence, but at least it is learned, and the Nihonjin (Japanese) teachers around me seem impressed that I am finally trying to learn their language, rather than always trying to get people to speak mine - which is kind of my whole reason for being here, but I know what they mean.
I also think about home - Toronto, Canada.
Should I stay or go home?
I think I'm going to stay for a third year. It seems like a big thing to have to decide now - especially since I am only in month 16 - not even the half-way mark of my second year... but I do love it here.
The people. The culture. The atmosphere. The fact that I live on my own. Good friends. The women - oh, man... the women.
I might indeed be happier without women in my life, but my life would sure be a whole hell of a lot more boring. Besides... I think Japan has enough monks.
I write a letter to Doug (my taxi driver mentor back in Toronto) and to Kristine (my confidante and woman-friend for whom I would kill a yak for if it would make her fall in love with me) who lives 500 kilometers to the west of me in Shiga-ken.
To both, I describe my job and duties here - and strangely enough, it doesn't seem like much.
Maybe I previously had a higher opinion of my work and self (Uh... not if you re-read the diary!)
Anyhow... I get to go home early again. The phys-ed teacher - Takano-sensei - a young, handsome guy who also teaches kendo, gives me a ride home. His English is friggin' perfect! I'm totally surprised!
He only previously spoke to me in choppy sentences - and now I find out he's fluent?!
I go home and then ride out to Books Time to rent some videos.
Ashley, my ex-girlfriend and sometimes friend-with-benefits, comes over. She give me some onigiri (Japanese rice balls - kind of like a reverse bit of sushi), and we talk and watch TV until 11PM.
Suddenly I'm giving her a naked back massage - but at 12AM before anything goes too far she says she has to go home.
No problem - I'm used to not finishing what other's start - and besides... it's a Tuesday and we both have work tomorrow.
I ride with her the 25-minutes back to her place. She wants me to stay while her bath heats up, but now I'm tired and tell her I need to go home despite her wanting me to now spend the night.
I ask her if everything is okay... I mean... she never has come over on a Tuesday before... and her staying up past midnight on a weekday is unheard of! She's usually sleepy by 9PM! And why so friendly? And why didn't Andrew get a happy ending again? Yes, I'm leaving, but too much is 'off'.
I asked her if she was homesick or if there were family problems, but no... she said she was fine.
There's is nothing worse than a woman who says she is fine.
But... I'm not feeling like I need to know how fine she is right now.
Somewhere staying but going,
By the way... the onigiri above - cool how it is supposed to look like the Japanese flag, eh.
Today's blog title is by The Clash: