Sixteenth Week #18 - Last Week of School in 2018 (and another movie :P)

January 3rd, 2019

This entry will cover my experiences: December 17th - December 21st


Monday (Dec. 17th):

  • While the others (AGAIN) had some tests I could join 10th and 12th graders' classes. During a break after a lesson with 10th graders some came to me and started talking and later also touched my hair because it is very different from theirs ^^.
  • In the classes with 12th graders a former exchange students to their class joined us and we talked a little. But we had to take practice tests of English. They are REALLY DIFFICULT.
  • Chorus club: Because it was only 4 of us (instead of 7 or more), I tried motivating the others to practice even without being the complete set. So I sat at the piano and was like pretty annyoing probably ^^ I noted down in my notebook that we made jokes and sarcasm used.
  • Went to a import goods supermarket to get some ingredients for the cookies I wanted to bake. I even found powdered sugar, which is kind of unusual for Japanese at least I think so. Got some sugar and cocoa. Couldn't find butter and don't know where other supermarkets or grocery shops are apart from that department at the station, so I bought it at a convenience store ^^ But apparently it was a salted butter. Yay. Not good. Btw, the store (Kaldi) also offered Haribo and Rittersport and so much more. It's really hard to find gifts for Japanese people them having all those options, too. I think something like Rafaello or kinder products are still not that common.

Tuesday (18th):

  • Watched more of "The Green Mile" in English class.
  • Tried a board game after class, that we will play when going to the American partner school in Zama attending their classes. I didn't really get the rules especially since everything was written in Japanese so I'm excited to see how people will try to explain them in English to other students. Although it's not thaaat difficult. Maybe.
  •  Surprised of our friends with a (small) surprise birthday party. People had bought snacks and cake and other presents and yeah. It was so nice of the people but as for me I wouldn't like it. I'm more the "just don't make a big fuss. I just wanna eat as much as I can. And maybe some movies with Pizza, cake and cookies. And water because health is important.
  • In chorus practice I suddenly found a mysterious cat key chain in my jacket. No idea how it got in there because I'd never seen it before. So I asked the girl who likes cats very much and she didn't know and then asked others. And then a 10th grader admitted she did it. She got me real good there. I don't know why I think it was very funny but like, it was so unexpected XD
  • Made some cookies for the birthday girl (the actual date was the day after) using a recipe especially for the microwave because I had assumed that the microwave my hostfam has, just had the Watt option. But it had normal oven option thing, too as it had turned out. It took me ages because I am slow and kind of perfectionist (although it's far from perfect) when it comes to doing something like cooking or cleaning my room or other stuff. Anyway, I think it turned out fairly well considering that I used a weird recipe and the butter was a "salted" one. And it was a microwave oven. But like whatever. I then divided the cookies in portions for other friends, too, which was kind of difficult because there are so many people, who were nice to me and I didn't want to disappoint anyone, e.g. if it was a group of people it would be kind of not fair to leave some out. Managed it, though the result was not perfect. Started watching the Disney show "Miraculous Ladybug" in Japanese on youtube. there are no full episodes but only small portions but I felt it was better than watching other videos in English.

Wednesday (19th):

  • Gave my cookies to all people (it was the birthday girl (with the most cookies ofc) and 7 or 8 others. Most people seemed to surprised but happy and I guess they tasted okay. Not trying to be humble or anything. I could've probably done better if I had prepared better. But one reaction was a little (just trying to remind me in the future)...  Actually changed my  mind and switch 2 "targets" of my cookies but neither option would have made me fully happy.
  • Went to Ebina with Italian girl and one of my "oldest" Japanese friends to watch "Bohemian Rhapsody". They got along well, although they hadn't known each other before. That Japanese girl is like a master of conversation. Making it all so natural and not a big deal like showing real interest and I'm lucky that we met and had the chance to interact in the first place. Anyway. We went straight from school to Ebina, bought the tickets first, then ate lunch (in kind of a hurry)  (I had pizza) at the shopping/restaurant/mall place connected to the station and on the opposite side of the station. Anyway we finished, hurried back to the cinema got some candy and popcorn and watched an amazing movie with much authenticity, a brilliant cast and a captivating perspective. And of course the music. Me, not really having been a fan of Queen (didn't particularly listen to their songs or know what their songs were) was astonished. It was funny to realize how many songs I knew because they had so much popularity that you don't have another choice but to listen to it one way or another. Awesome movie, awesome music. Nice. Give it a 9.8 out of 10.  More dunqueen.
  • While Italian girl had to leave right after the movie had finished, the Japanese girl and I made our way to a café, I had been to with another girl, where I had drunk the most delicious matcha flavored drink: matcha shake. This time it was a little too sweet for me (and maybe too cold for that time of year), but okay. The friend showed me videos of a concert she'd been, too. And she had had excellent seats, which were very close to the stage, so she could see the singer very close to her.

Thursday (20th):

  • In English class we played a "vocab game" where the teacher shows one student a word, which they have to explain to the other students without - of course - using that word or familiar words. It seemed kind of challenging for them, although it shouldn't be. I know, most of them are able to do it and just lack experience and confidence. It's not difficult. You just learn the strategies by trying and so on. But like it kind of bugged me that I have that experience and it was so easy for me. Because that means that they, being Japanese students must also have something that is very easy for them, that I as a German student can't perform well at. And I don't like that I feel like it should be kind of common knowledge or like a skill everyone should have because that is just me being opinionated and I don't want to alienate people because I figure, they lack something I consider necessary to make them an averagely-educated person. It's like looking down on them although I know it's neither their fault nor may it be correct to judge taking into the equation that it might not be as important as a skill as I'm making it out to be. Very complex/confusing thoughts, sorry.
  • Played the "Werewolf" game [MY GÄÄÄÄÄNG] in German class, but like they kind of played it differently from what I'm used to. E.g. they would not reveal the killed person's role. Or there is one role which only wins if it is killed but like we killed that role, the person one and then the others played on.
  • In the second lesson we wrote letters to students from a German partner high school. I was supposed to kind of introduce Yamato Nishi to them and tell them about my school life and so on. But we will finish the letters only after winter vacation.
  • Watched more "Miraculous Ladybug" (ofc in Japanese ;P)

Friday (21st):

  • Japanese people have something called Oosouji (=big clean up) before the new year starts. So most households will tidy up and clean everything, which actually makes sense. It can't be bad too clean your messes up before starting into your new year. And we had Oosouji also at school so we cleaned not only the classroom but also the computer and biology room. But like. It didn't take as much time as one might expect. So because we had finished early we had some free time and I didn't want to study Japanese for that time so instead I put out my bavarian ("Schafskopf" ;P) playing cards and played "Schafskopf", which is usually requires 4 players to play, all by myself, pretending to be every single player. I just wish someone would show enough interest so that I could teach them (probably another game because "Schafskopf" is way too difficult and don't forget I'd be the only one of 4 that knows the rules and strategies). But although I've seen a group of girls playing poker or something on a app together, I don't feel like anyone wants to learn some Bavarian card games from me. I hadn't noticed until that moment, how much I missed playing. Playing with my friends [again: MY GÄÄÄÄÄÄNG]. I must've looked like an idiot, maniac or really sad girl. But I didn't care as much as to stop. Like whatever. I really miss being the full frank version of myself. It's sad to admit that there is almost no way that I can be the me I want to be in Japan and in Japanese. It's disappointing and though actually obvious kind of unexpected. But I chose this. This rough road to learn something. And not being able to express the most real version of me kind of helps knowing what that version is.
  • It is in these moments, when I feel lonely. Had it been the first day or week someone might have come up to me and asked about the cards or something. But now... it is just a daily up-and-down although by far, now more than 3 and a half months being through some experiences it's not as bad as in the late beginning (2nd half of 1st month till beginning of 3rd month?). It just took some time and some moments of revealing myself sometimes and some people who I shared some conversations with, that made it better. But you (or is it just some people?) cannot replace or come close to the friendships with people who are on the same page because of language and all the years you spend together [SHOUTOUT to the friend who made me realize that ;P You are very wise for your age. And I admire your compassion and attitude towards what we humans can be if we try hard enough and how to make a better future. I hope our lives will cross even as we grow up to be busy and less enthusiastic adults.].
  • Had a meeting with all students in the gym. An honouring of some students, singing the school song and a presentation of a university and some speeches. 
  • Joined for a last, quick chorus practice before the concert 3 days later.
  • And here is the up-side: at the shoe-lockers one girl wished me a happy new year but I didn't get the phrase first, so she explained it to me. These small moments of attention and someone trying give me hope of an even brighter future.



Hey, you! Yeah, you. What up? You might be wondering (or probably haven't notice) where Saturday and Sunday are. Well here is the thing: IT'S A SPECIAL EPISODE (that is, entry):


Read about my trip to an ONSEN: Sixteenth Weekend #19 - Some Sightseeing

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