Thursday, June 9, 2011

I love 1-4

I know I shouldn't go into how I've been doing the past few weeks, ever since the Tsunami, in fact.  I can succeed at that.  I can't succeed, obviously, from not mentioning it at all.  I had reservations about starting this blog in the first place because I knew how much I would have to keep to myself, that I would have to edit myself, and that it could be dangerous because I'm not that good at keeping things to myself.  That's a mix of a little lack of self restraint and a bit more of not giving a f#$%.  Let's just say I've been down.  I've been more than second guessing my decision to stay in Japan another year, wondering how in hell I'm going to make it. 

Why?  Well, I think it mostly has to do with whatever is attacking my health.  I think I've always been a pretty healthy person, but Japan has overwhelmed me.  I've mentioned my health enough in the course of this blog so I'm not giving it any more attention.  A lot of the time, right now, I'm not sure I have what it takes to complete my 2nd contract.  JETs who did not recontract are preparing to leave right now.  As I write this, I think about how I recontracted and that this is how it's happening, and I tend to believe that whatever happens to be happening is the right thing.  That's my whole "The Universe is unfolding as it should be" thing.  I think it's a good thing.  But sometimes I think I should be among the leaving JETs, and how when I recontracted in January I was optimistic that my health would be reinstated in a short time.  Instead, I'm laying on the ground getting crushed by a steam roller of different ailments.  It rolls over me, and just as I'm about to get up and brush myself off, it backs up again.  Sometimes I'm not, but mostly I'm making it.  I hope I keep making it.   

This brings me to 1-4.  The 1 is for class one, or the first year high school students.  The 4 is for section four, or the students who accomplished the 4th best scores on the high school entrance exam.  My class with 1-4 today was a happy mess.  I forgot to execute the whole first part of my lesson, which I really couldn't go back to once I had gone on with the English game of Battleship that we were playing.  It was a mess, but everyone had so much fun, and I felt better than I have in weeks.  I have to relish in those moments, since they are few and far between right now.  But I did.  I stopped and enjoyed the chaos of students hurriedly trying to speak English sentences to find their partner's Xs on the page, all in pursuit of the candy I shower on them.  I went up to the front of the class and I yelled, "I love you!"  They all giggled and screamed and yelled it back.  Then I gave a whoop for "1-4" and I got nothing.  I explained to them that ichi no yon means 1-4, and that they are 1-4.  Then they were really excited and liked my shout out.  We had a grand time playing Battleship 3 or 4 times instead of spending half the time reviewing the vocabulary.  I also like stealing moments while the students are occupied to stand at the classroom's 4th floor windows and enjoy the nice views of the city and the mountains.

Just a little update.

From Japan,

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