Monday, October 25, 2004


Here's what's been up the past two weeks. No rambling diary entry, just the bullets -

- Matsuri. This is a big festival. Everyone gets really drunk and carries 3-ton drums around town. Sometimes the drums fight. This is sort of a joust, where one drum tries to poke its handles through the other drum. I saw an entire drum thing get destroyed, and I think someone died. It's madness. It was because of this matsuri, and the ensuing fatigue, that I have not really updated much this month. I was helping to carry one of these things for three days. has pictures. Although Pat seems to think my name is Mike. The bastard.

Anyway that was a lot of fun. It was. But I wish theyd given me a day off.

-Translating. As if working in Japanese 8-5 M-F isn't enough, I took a bit of a part-time job editing a translation of an "artistic" series of essays about Niihama, written by some famous haiku writer. These were translated into English, and it was my job to make the translations sound artistic and beautiful. So, the first and the third weekends in October I spent pouring over manuscripts. I got 600 dollars and some change for it, but it was a bitch. I am still not quite done, still gotta give the final read through for about 5 essays.

Anyway, between the Matsuri and the translating, and the 3 typhoons we had this month, I have not so much had a weekend. I am really, really tired all the time. It has started to show on my face, I think, because everyone keeps asking me if I am okay. It wouldn't be a big deal but it's starting to slow me down in the morning. I used to get in at 745, now I get in around 750, which is the absolute deadline. This week has been the worst - Monday I got here at 755, and today I received a phone call which woke me up - around 8am. Very embarassing. I need to go find some vitamins, my mother tells me, and sleep more. I think I will - nothing is so interesting that I need to stay up late every weeknight.

Oh, and I seem to have stumbled my way into a girlfriend. Her name's Ayako. She's pretty, speaks better english than most (but not good english, like, my japanese is better), and cooks/bakes. And she likes to eat, she's tiny and can keep up with me at dinner. It's scary. The other day she came over to help me bake a cake (cuz I needed a cake, long story, more weekend volunteer stuff) and when I started cleaning up afterwards she chased me out of the kitchen, insisting that I play video games while she cleans up. I think I may be in love. ;) She's the one on the left in this picture:

The only thing that makes me uneasy about the whole affair is that she's 23, a college grad, and her 22 year old brother is married and has a kid, and she seems to be looking to get married. I am certainly not in any position to oblige her there, but it's all good. We'll have fun.

Well, I am going to go be productive today - I removed AIM from my work computer yesterday, I want to concentrate and study hard here. It's been kind of rough for me lately, what with the fatigue and all, and also I've always been a terrible student, so I need to reinvent myself a bit.

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