Not a whole lot has been going on in the past few weeks. I've been on vacation with, unfortunately, very little money to go around so I haven't been able to afford to do anything too interesting.
The film translation I was helping with is done and they are holding a free screening in a couple of weeks. I was invited to attend so I'll let you know how that goes afterward.
I received my work permit a few days ago. I had my first task of translating the instructions to a Japanese placement exam. I was able to work on that from my dorm which was convenient. Working from home is pretty much the best position you could ask for. I have orientation for the rest of the job tomorrow. Hopefully some of it will also be able to be done from my dorm as well; at least the translation work. The recording of the narration for the orientation video will obviously have to be done elsewhere.
I've been studying Japanese everyday. I was doing nothing but kanji practice, but that can get a little dry so I've moved on to making tons of example sentence flashcards. I've filled them with lots of structures that I'm familiar with, but maybe a little rusty at, and I'm using lots of vocabulary that I don't know. That way I'm learning grammatical structures, vocabulary, and kanji all at once. It's going really well so far and is really fun since I'm using Anki (the digital flashcard program). I just put my i-Tunes (or i-Pod, if I'm out and about) on random and study for an hour or two at a time. I'm learning a lot this way.
Takafumi asked me the other day if I knew anyone in Michigan that was studying Japanese that may want a Japanese pen pal. I sent a message to one of my friends and Japanese classmates from last year. As a thank you, Takafumi set me up with one of his Japanese friends as a language partner for me. Like I said above, I'm getting tons of Japanese studying in, but still very little speaking and listening practice. This will help me out a lot. Hopefully it works out so that we can meet up semi-frequently.
Between studying Japanese, I've been watching a really interesting 8-part documentary on the origins and evolution of the English language which is fascinating. I'm on part 6 now.
I had an interesting experience the other night. I kind of liked this Japanese girl. I kind of thought she liked me to. We went on what most would consider a date. Dinner. Movie. Etc...twice! Well, I worked up the courage and I decided to let her know that I liked her only to find out that she has a boyfriend!
So, yeah. I mean, she said she liked me too but that she had a boyfriend so...anyway. I was a little disappointed, of course, but more surprised. Why was she going out to dinner and stuff with me. I mean, I obviously liked her. We would text each other everyday. If I had known she had a boyfriend I wouldn't have said anything. We get along great and I would have been perfectly content just remaining close friends. Hopefully we still can. She's out of the country for the next few weeks. We still have plans to watch Ponyo when she returns. We'll see if that still happens.
I told myself that I've enjoyed Japan thus far without a girlfriend, so it's not as if this ruins my whole time here. In fact, life will just be that much less complicated without a girlfriend. Besides, I've gone through much harder things in terms of relationships. It took me all of a day or so to forget about that small crush and move on.
I guess Japanese language is my lady...
Yeah. I'm a nerd.
Well, that's all for now. I wish I could tell you that I've been traveling all over Japan during this break but, unless you guys want to send me some money, that's probably not going to happen. If I make enough from this part-time work I'm going to still try to make it to at least Hiroshima during Spring break. If not, there are still a few more JTW study trips planned for next semester. I really want to make it to Kyoto before leaving Japan, if not Tokyo as well. I'll try to save enough to do that.
I miss you all!