Thursday, September 29, 2011

Hooking Up, with Japanese Students

Oh, I amused myself by getting fLisky with my Resson pRan today.  Maybe you'll be amused too!  Let's enjoy together! 

English Slang Expressions - Hook Up
Tiffany, ALT

A.   I will hook you up  means
I will give you some.
I will help you.
I will introduce you to someone.

B.   Hook me up!  means
Give me some.
Help me.
Introduce me.

C.   Did you hook up?  means
Did you meet?
Did you introduce yourself?
Did you work together in some capacity?

Let’s read these examples of how you can get hooked up, then pair up the explanations at the top with the examples below.  Put the letter of the closest explanation on the line under the examples.

A: I really want a cookie.
B: I have cookies.  I’ll hook you up.
___________

A: I like your friend.  Can you hook me up?
B: Sure, let’s go.  I’ll introduce you.
___________

A: Hook me up with some of those French fries!
B: No way, get your own French fries.
____________

A: You have to listen to this new band.  I’ll hook you up with a copy of the CD.
_____________

A: Did you and the new boy hook up?
B: No, he had onion breath when I went to talk to him, so I went to karaoke instead.
______________

Write one of your own!!


OMG. I crack me up.  ;-)
From Japan,
Tiffany

In My Life by The Beatles

The fall makes me so calm and thoughtful.  Here's a nice song for times like this...

There are places I'll remember
All my life though some have changed
Some forever not for better
Some have gone and some remain
All these places have their moments
With lovers and friends I still can recall
Some are dead and some are living
In my life I've loved them all


But of all these friends and lovers
There is no one compares with you
And these memories lose their meaning
When I think of love as something new
Though I know I'll never lose affection
For people and things that went before
I know I'll often stop and think about them
In my life I love you more


Though I know I'll never lose affection
For people and things that went before
I know I'll often stop and think about them
In my life I love you more
In my life I love you more


From Japan,
Tiffany

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Byouki Ballet

Byouki means sick.  I am sick.  Please ready the jet, Alexander, I require my mommy.

Actually, I need drugs.  I long for NyQuil, DayQuil, and Sudafed.  Especially NyQuil.  The glory of NyQuil is solidified by its mention by several comedians who were/are funny enough that you know their names.

Mitch Hedberg:  "What am I drinking? NyQuil on the rocks, for when you're feeling sick but sociable."

Lewis Black:  "I like a cold, because I get to do my favorite drug, which is NyQuil. I love that stuff. What do the rest of you use, Robitussin? Robitussin, why do you even bother? Non-narcotic, sissy-pansy bullshit. NyQuil's got the best thing I've ever read on a medicine package, 180 proof. It's the moonshine of medicine. You can buy it on a holiday. See, cause when I got a cold, I want something that's gonna *snaps* fuck me up. Cause that way the blur seems interesting. There's a day time NyQuil, there's a night time NyQuil, drink either one you want...cause your cold doesn't give a shit what time it is."

Denis Leary:  "I don't do illegal drugs anymore. Now I just do the legal drugs. Tonight I'm on NyQuil and Sudafed. Let me tell you something, folks. Forget about cocaine and heroine. All you need is NyQuil and Sudafed. I'm telling you right now, I took the NyQuil five years ago. ... I love NyQuil. Man, I love it!  It's never changed. All the other medicines are doing that inner-child thing. "we know that there's a small child inside of you, so now we have grape and cherry and orange flavor." Not NyQuil! They still have the original green death fucking flavor! You know why!? Because it doesn't matter what it tastes like! It's so strong you go, "*wheeze* Hey this stuff really tastes like.." Bang! Yer in the coma already! "What happened?" "He said tastes like and he went right into the coma, it was unbelievable!" We have reached the point where the over the counter drugs are actually stronger than anything you can buy on the street. It says on the back of the NyQuil box, on the back of the box it says, "May cause drowsiness." It should say, "Don't make any fucking plans! Kiss your family and friends goodbye. ... NyQuil is the secret for all you twelve step recovery program people. Yes, all you AA people, NyQuil is the key! It's the thirteenth fucking step! You can drink it! It's over the counter! Drink as much as you want. "Are you drunk?" "No! I have a cold. Same cold I've had for two years. I just can't seem to shake it. I'm high as a kite and my teeth are green. Merry fucking Christmas!"

The trouble is that NyQuil, DayQuil, and Sudafed are illegal in Japan.  What do the people do when they get mind twisting, insanity inducing sinus infections, as I have gotten about once a year for the past 6 or 7 years?  Seriously.  Last January - my sinus infection usually visits uninvited in January - I thought I was going to lose my mind, and there was just nothing to take.  I got sinus meds from the pharmacy and my usual slew of meds from the doctor (he prescribes me a stomach medicine, an antihistamine, an antibiotic, and a pain med every time no matter what I go in for.   National Health care is brilliant, but there are issues.)  I settled for a few moments of relief here and there by eating jalapenos and cayenne pepper.  So, this year, I'm not playing games.  Well, actually, that's exactly what I'm going to do, but I can't tell you what games I'm going to play, lest you ruin my evil plan!  Wahahahaha!

Since I just mentioned Lewis Black, and I may never get the chance to brag about this again, I'll tell you that I've had stand-up lessons with him.  I now know that I can't do stand up comedy.  This class ended up being torture for me.  We were all at a party one night and Lewis Black came up to talk to me about my routine, and I started crying.  He hugged me and gave me a really nice pep talk.  We were friends for that couple of months.  Maybe he wouldn't want you to know this, but he's a really sweet man.

And now for the ballet!  Despite being sick, I went to the ballet last night.  I already had my ticket, and I doubt another ballet will come around soon that I know about, cause if it is mentioned without a big picture of somebody in a tutu, it is lost on me because I can hardly read in this country.  I ran into a friend at the door who rushed me to my seat and ran away.  She is a ballet teacher, so maybe she had something to do with the show.  I wasn't really prepared to be moving that fast, but she was nice.

I felt terrible sitting between this woman and this young girl blowing my nose and coughing throughout the performance.  I tried to keep it to a minimum.  As is common in Japan with most things in my life, I didn't know what show I was going to see; when I buy lunch, I'm not really sure what's going to be in it, when I buy medicine, I'm not exactly sure what it's for, and when I go to the bank, I press buttons until the money comes out.  When a loud speaker comes on and then the masses start walking in a certain direction, I just go with them.  I've gotten used to it; turns out I was going to see The Nutcracker.  Funny, I've never seen The Nutcracker in September before.  But, Christmas in Japan is kinda like Chinese New Year in America:  No one really cares when it actually is, so on with the show!

The show was fine.  The two principal dancers were professionals and the rest of the performers were students from the Oita area.  I really enjoy going to stage performances, so I'm not too concerned if it isn't exactly ABT.  I made it through the show and went home to bed.

Other than that, I have been busily preparing for Halloween.  I LOVE Halloween.  I love it I love it I love it.  Last Halloween was fantastic, and I hope this year is just as fun.  Of course, Halloween isn't so easy to prepare for in a country that doesn't really celebrate it.  There are no costume shops that I am aware of.  They don't sell face paint.  So, I've been piecing things together and making my Amazon orders to people in America who will then ship/bring my stuff.  It's a bit of work, but it's fun. 

I'm only 3/4 conscious, so I hope this post was coherent enough.

From Japan,
Tiffany

Monday, September 19, 2011

My Mom and The Magic Jack

I was telling a friend yesterday, during our ladies day out to almost die at Mount Aso (from toxic gases that set off the warning system), that me and my mom are super close, and so that fine mother/daughter-love/hate thing runs rampant in our relationship.  You know the old story, the closer you are to someone, the easier it is for them to hurt you, and for you to hurt them.  But, what makes that vulnerability worth it, is that relationships like that last over time and space.  Nothing can change a love so strong.

So, of course, we hang up on each other a lot.  She hangs up on me a lot more than I hang up on her.  I think she just gets upset a lot easier, but we definitely test each other equally. 

Anyway, I was telling my friend how we hang up on each other all the time.  (Peter knows that, and the other morning when he was still dozing on the couch, he heard me excitedly, but with good humor, explaining my point, and then the click of the phone with no goodbye, and he started laughing.  He knew she had hung up on me.  And we had a laugh.)  So, my point is, my friend asked me how I can talk on the phone in Japan to my mom in the USA.  The answer is THE MAGIC JACK!!  (I wish I could make it echo.)        

Everyone studying, working, or living abroad should know about the magic jack.  It's $20 from Radio Shack.  You pay $20 for a phone number and 1 year of service.  That's it.  Once I had done that, I was set to talk to anyone in the United States for 1 year, as much as I wanted.  AND I have a 727- Florida phone number, which means that anyone in the 727- area and anyone in the United States with a cell phone can call me in Japan like they would call anyone else that is Pinellas County or USA local.  It comes with voice mail, too, and I'm pretty sure there are deals in many other countries besides Japan and the US.

Here are the very few inconveniences:  I didn't know that I had to have a regular phone with a cord and a jack to use this thing, so when I FINALLY got Internet in Japan, about 6 weeks after I had arrived, I plugged the thing into my USB, started doing the set up, and then realized that I still couldn't talk to anyone because I didn't have a phone.  It really was devastating.  Moving across the world is not easy my friends, and being in a very new and different place, cut off from the world with no e-mail and no phone made me feel very claustrophobic... 

I would wake up in the middle of the night during the first couple of months, terrified.  I would know where I was, but not know where THAT was, and I would know that I could get up and walk around, but to go WHERE?  Nowhere familiar.  Nowhere safe.  I knew that I could get on a plane and go home... but I couldn't.  I had a job.  A family.  I was paralyzed.  I felt buried alive for a few moments on those nights.  I wouldn't understand my own description, I don't think, had I not experienced it.

So, the magic jack needs a phone.  Within a few days I snagged a phone from another JET that had an extra in the closet (It takes a village).  You plug the magic jack into your computer and you plug the phone jack into the magic jack.  Then you are in business.  The other inconvenience is that your computer has to be on and the MJ program has to be running, or you just won't get your calls (until you check voice mail), and if you want to make a quick call, you first have to get the mac going, plug in the MJ, start the program, and then make your call.  But, it really is very convenient, and it's definitely the most cost efficient method of calling from Japan that I have heard of.  I just signed up for my 2nd year of Magic Jack.  $20.  Easy.

So, my mom and I can talk for hours, and when the time comes, we can hang up on each other and call each other back as often as we want, for one low price.  ;-)  Every JET, at least, should have a Magic Jack.  And an awesome mom.

From Japan,
Tiffany

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Japan Happy Love

Look!  An actual post about Japan!  Imagine.

So, we have had our school festival over the past few days.  The students, without consulting me, called the festival Fresh Story.  The best part was when they opened the festival with a giant screen projection that said Flesh Story.  I thought to myself, Teenagers doing a 6 hour show called Flesh Story.  This might not be too bad!  I was kidding myself though; I knew what they meant.  I saw skits, the chorus, piano performances, a solo singer, the brass band, lots of dancing and lip singing, a hip-hop dance, a naginata performance (really cool choreographed spear dance), calligraphy done to music, and a fashion show featuring dresses and such that the students made from scratch.  They all looked like cotton candy in various shades, covered in ruffles, but I was impressed none the less.  And lots of back flips.  Japanese boys and men will dress up in skirts at every opportunity.  And they play the explicit lyrics in songs at family events, because no one really has a context for what those words mean. 

Speaking of profanity and the complete lack of grasp, I have to go on a tangent and tell you about the local thrift shop.  It's awesome and it is called Eco-town.  You know, a family place.  The whole bottom floor is toys.  When you go up the escalator to the 2nd floor where the baby furniture is, where appliances and clothes are, they have a little display.  One day I rode up there, and there were two mannequins.  One was wearing a hot pink shirt that said, "Keep On Relaxing Fuck For Your Life."  The other was wearing a baseball cap that said, "Fuck All Y'all."  I am not making this up.  (I have pictures on my phone.  I'll try to add them, but I always forget.) 

Today we had the final day of the festival, sports day, but we had to do it in the gym because it's raining.  I heard that 2 typhoons are coming, but I don't know if today's weather is their fault.  The students are so cute, and although when I first got here, I felt that the students didn' have much spirit, now I've gotten to know them better.  I've had opportunities to see them let loose, and I've gotten learn that they rarely have the social opportunities that we have in America.  They don't have dances and they are entirely absorbed with studying and clubs.  I think that when I go back to America, I might be overwhelmed by the craziness.

My car, which I can't drive anymore because I no longer have a driver's license (international licenses expire after one year, and it's a giant pain in the ass to get a Japanese license), broke down on Wednesday night.  Peter had it towed to our mechanic at 11pm, who apparently lives there, because after a series of ringing bells and talking to an old Japanese guy, the mechanic appeared, gave Peter a car, and said he would call the next day with the estimate.  Japan happy love.  His estimate was about 3/5ths the worth of the car, so we took it to another place and got a better deal.  Peter gave the first car back to the mechanic, and was given another car from the second guy.  No paperwork, no signature, nothing, just, "Here you go, take this car until we are done."  That reminds me of something else I wanted to share... a few weeks ago we needed a new fuse thingie for the lights, but it was Friday afternoon and they couldn't get the part until Monday or Tuesday, so the mechanic took the part out of his own car and put it into our car for the weekend, no charge.  Japan happy love.  I'm still bewildered by how NOT smarmy Japanese mechanics are.

What else... what else... Oh, yeah.  This is Japan, right?  They wear costumes all the time for different reasons.  So where, I ask, are the costume shops?  I'm trying to get ready for Halloween, here.  They don't sell face paint.  MOM!!!!  Will you make me a Halloween costume and mail it to Japan before October 28th??  Someone, please tell my mom to read this.

Oh, Japan, you are too good to me.  Japan happy love.

I've been to (Honshu) Tokyo, Osaka, Kyoto, (Hokkaido) Sapporo, Otaru, Niseko, (Shikoku) Ehime, Uwajima, (Kyushu) Fukuoka, Beppu, Kitsuki, Usuki, and more!  I hope to go to Okinawa for Christmas: Who is in?!

Also, I really want Knox to start going to Japanese pre-school, maybe when he turns three in April.  But, right now he goes to school with Peter and I know Peter cherishes that time, so we will see.  I just think Knox should learn Japanese while he can!!

That's all for this random update.

From Japan,
Tiffany


 

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

A Healthy Whole

Friends,

I have been getting many wonderful messages of love and support.  Lots of digital hugs and kisses.  They lift me up and encourage me.  They solidify my confidence in my relationships.  But, I don't think most people realize how... how great I feel.  I'm having trouble deciding how to explain to you how I can be so happy and healthy, because I am, in the midst of the current situation.  Yes, it's difficult, and I definitely have my days, but when you feel like you are getting distance from something that causes you pain, it's liberating, and how high and how low you go depends heavily on how you handle things.  And, the thing is, I am handling them really well.  Remarkably well.  I surprise myself.

I think navigating life's challenges and blessings is dependant on your health.  Your mental, emotional, spiritual, and physical health.  If each of those is in order, not much can bring you down, not that it's simple to do.  Often times, as in any relationship, the components give and take for each other.  That's fine, as long as effort is put toward homeostasis.  Maybe it can't be achieved, but the attention you put toward it matters.  Everything matters.  Something you did 15 years ago might matter to the state of your life right now.  What if you had gotten drunk and stolen your mom's car and lost a foot when you were 15 years old?  That would matter to you when you were 30.  What if you won a grant when you were 25 that led you to win a Nobel Prize when you were 40?  Those are obvious examples, but just because something isn't obvious to you, doesn't mean it's not affecting your life.  Be nice to the cashier at the gas station.  It all matters.

As for physical health, since that is the most straight forward to describe, I do the Spartacus workout (SW) 3 or 4 days a week.  I take a multi-vitamin (a nice organic, food-based one), I eat my fruits and veggies, and I usually don't eat too much.  That is key for me cause I'm a little person with a big appetite for many things, including food.  It's a lot easier in Japan to make the right choices, I think, because often they are made for you.  Maybe you wanted the super size, but all they offer is the kinda-small size, so there you are, forced to make a reasonable portion choice.  They don't have Olive Garden, let me tell you.  Moderation is cliche, but key.  I want lattes, and I drink them, but I drink green tea sometimes instead.  I want cookies, and I eat them, but I eat nuts at school (usually).  Also, it's harder to eat a whole bag of cookies when you have to unwrap each one.  I also choose to take the stairs, walk when I could ride, and get out for a lunch walk almost every day.  Drink lots of water, don't ignore pain... you know the drill.  It took me a while to figure out how to get my exercise in Japan.  I had a lot of requirements, and my routine could not conflict with anything Knox related, so that's how I ended up with the free, living room based SW.  I don't have to travel and I can do it anytime I please.  Someone even gave me the weights, since we JETs redistribute all of the things that were left behind by our predecessors.  The SW has been a godsend (Thanks Andrei!). 

Speaking of God, I'll go from the easiest to describe to the hardest.  Although, one way to stay healthy and happy is to respect the times when you don't have the energy to do something.  Right now, I don't have the energy to describe my spiritual beliefs.  But, in pursuit of happiness, I think you have to know what yours are.  I think it is essential in life to divine what you believe, at an age where the decision is truly yours, and not simply what you keep doing because it was impressed upon you.  Everyone can reassert themselves when they become independent, but most people are not inclined to do so.  I think that sucks, but that's ok.  I was inclined to do so, and luckily I like to read and study.  I honestly want to get better in every way I can whenever I have the opportunity, which is at every moment, really.  Statistically, people who have a spiritual practice report more life satisfaction.  Take it or leave it, but I agree.  Our finite minds are presented with so much...

Mental health is physical, too.  You have to feed your mind if you expect it to keep working for you.  Feed it some combination of books, music, art, new environs, puzzles, and problems to figure out... Education feeds the mind, and educated people are better at organizing their worlds.  If the mind is not fed, the mind's partner has too much responsibility.  I'm speaking of Madame Emotion, and no one wants her in charge.  She's important, but she should not be running things on her own.

As for the emotions, they seem to rely on the health of the whole more than the others, to function in a healthy way.  But maybe that's my experience talking, because I think that mental, emotional, spiritual, and physical health are each equally important and fragile.  The pickle is that emotions are not like the others in that they don't need to be fed; they feed themselves; they multiply like gremlins (which, if you haven't seen it, put the popper on).  Emotions need to be expressed, I think.  That's how to keep the whole healthy.  While the mind, body, and spirit can dwindle without care, the emotions increase.  If we don't do anything to release the excess in a gradual way, we release the excess in an explosion.  We yell.  We throw chocolate.  And sometimes worse.  Some people drink to put the excess emotions to sleep.  Most of the time, these kinds of reactions are avoidable.  Most of the time we can take the time to release our emotions at a healthy pace and choose to respond, instead of react.  Draw, write, dance, talk, punch a bag, run, rock out on the air guitar.  Express yourself. 

We can try to do everything in our power to stay healthy, but sometimes things are out of our power.  People get injuries and diseases, people have chemical imbalances in the mind... I don't know if the emotions or spirit can have diseases of their own -maybe that's where monsters are born- but the dis-ease in any part of the body affects those, too.  Make sure the whole is strong so that when misfortune finds you, and it will, it doesn't beat you.

In short, do what you know is good for you.  I know that's not easy sometimes, but the measure of masochism I witness is baffling.  Your body really is your temple.  It is you, and it's where you live.  Respect it. 

The next part is almost in spite of what I've said so far, and it's because I'm teetering between the two.  I've come to a point in my life where I can look back and connect some dots... and I think I've been a bit too principled and a little too hard on people close to me for not living up to what I saw as their potential.  And I've been too hard on myself for not being exactly what I thought I should be.  I've started to relax.  There is strength in letting things be, and there is virtue in accepting things for what they are.  I don't want to confuse acceptance with inaction, but we don't have to be perfect and we don't always have to be achieving to be valued and valuable.  I used to see things in such a black and white way, and I admit that I still do a little, but I'm trying to calm down, back up, and see the palette.  I'm trying to go easier.   

Here is a prose poem by Max Ehrmann.  It has helped me many times.

Go placidly amid the noise and haste,
and remember what peace there may be in silence.


As far as possible without surrender
be on good terms with all persons.
Speak your truth quietly and clearly;
and listen to others,
even the dull and the ignorant;
they too have their story.
Avoid loud and aggressive persons,
they are vexations to the spirit.


If you compare yourself with others,
you may become vain or bitter;
for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.


Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans.
Keep interested in your own career, however humble;
it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.
Exercise caution in your business affairs;
for the world is full of trickery.
But let this not blind you to what virtue there is;
many persons strive for high ideals;
and everywhere life is full of heroism.

Be yourself.
Especially, do not feign affection.
Neither be cynical about love;
for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment
it is as perennial as the grass.


Take kindly the counsel of the years,
gracefully surrendering the things of youth.
Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune.
But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings.
Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness.


Beyond a wholesome discipline,
be gentle with yourself.
You are a child of the universe,
no less than the trees and the stars;
you have a right to be here.
And whether or not it is clear to you,
no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.


Therefore be at peace with God,
whatever you conceive Him to be,
and whatever your labors and aspirations,
in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul.


With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams,
it is still a beautiful world.
Be cheerful.
Strive to be happy.

Sorry I kept you so long today.  :-)  I just want you to know that I took this advice, strengthened my spirit, and the others, and I am smiling.  I missed the last bus the other day.  I just took a stroll, ran into some friends and had a good talk, and then conned a cabbie into taking me home for the change in the bottom of my purse, as I had also run out of money.  The little things are not bothering me.  The big ones, I'm handling.  And I feel good. 

From Japan,
Tiffany

Thursday, September 1, 2011

A Little About Knox

Knox was eating his cereal this morning and -he always does this- he picked out a raisin (sometimes it's a piece of mango, or a cranberry) and showed it to me and said, "Mommy, what is this?"  I said, "You know what it is baby, it's a raisin."  He ate it and then said, "No, Mommy, I don't think so, I think it's a candy."

This morning Knox got a big boy chair at the breakfast table.  When we arrived in Japan, he was only 1 year and 4 months old.  Now he is 2 years, 5 months old, and he doesn't want to sit in his really cool suspension chair anymore.  So, now the extra dining chair is in his spot.  He is getting so big.

He often will go to get something and then turn around and look at me and say, "No?"  It's funny, cause the things I would say "no" to are never the things he asks about.  I always say, "Yes, bubby, that's ok."

Every morning I ride in the back seat with him to school.  He's in the "why" stage.  He says, "Mommy, where we going?"  I say, "I'm going to work and you are going to school, just like we do every day."  And he says, "Why?"  He says "why" to every answer I give, and I try to keep answering him until I can't anymore.  Sometimes I end up saying things like, "Well, we can't know why because no one has ever been to the edges of the Universe." 

After school, I either wait for Knox to wake up from his nap, and then ride somewhere with him, or I walk downtown to enjoy a relaxed drink at Starbucks, go to the bookstore, or go window shopping.  I don't usually have the time or inclination for actual shopping right after school. 

Almost every night we eat dinner around 6pm, then take a bath around 7 or 7:30pm.  Knox used to go to bed strictly at 8pm, but since he turned two I decided to ease up on myself with the schedule, and I'm happy if he gets into bed between 8 and 9.  We read two books in low light, then I put him into bed and sing him a song.  Lately, his favorite bedtime song is "Part of Your World" from The Little Mermaid.  When I say, "You want thingie ma bobs?" he says, "Yes."  Sometime during the routine he usually asks for water, and sometimes for a snack.  Although we have been through different phases, right now he doesn't seem to be doing it just to stay up, so I get him a snack, he eats it, and then I turn the light off and go out. 

Recently, he has been waking up, scared of monsters or dragons.  He woke up three nights in the past week.  One night he was up for an hour, and was completely freaking out, but usually he goes back to sleep after 5 or so minutes. 

Sometimes when he gets up for the day, or gets up from a nap, I think I can tell that he grew while he was sleeping.  Yesterday, when he woke up from his nap it seemed like he had gained significantly in the speech department.  Peter told me that Knox woke up and said, "Daddy, I'm sad because Mommy is not here."  Then, as they were walking down the stairs to come meet me downtown he said, "I'm not sad anymore."  He has also started to correctly use time related words like already, not yet, and almost. 

Sometimes when he laughs, Knox covers his mouth with his tiny little hand and says, "Oh, my."  It is precious and hilarious.  That's something he learned at school.  He also does his phonics a lot:  "Allie Alligator, Ah, Ah!"  "Fancy Fish, Ffff, Ffff!"  He really likes school, especially because they go swimming and to the park a lot.

Five, ten, fifteen years from now, I'll be so happy to have this account of things I would otherwise have no recollection of.

From Japan,
Tiffany