Two of my students cancelled today. Bliss! Means I'm ahead on my weeks lesson preparations.
Some lessons, especially with the better students, I just forget to open the textbook as we get so engrossed in conversation. I'm learning so much from my students about Japan. About religion, death, customs in Japan, superstition, school girls and their teeny skirts, all sorts. I love it. And I think they like someone showing an interest. And lessons are fun with these students as you can have a bit of a laugh. One of my days I have pretty much nothing other than foundation and elementary students - ie not good - and it can get a bit painful...
I have one male student though, who goes over the top with the old hair drying and who I can't figure out if he smells of hair spray or some weird fragrance. Anyway, he's around my age, lives at home and has a Scottish fiancee. He is so serious. He's one of those students I mentioned that has little imagination, even when I get animated... And a sense of humour I'm yet to see. Had one particularly interesting bit last lesson when the text book said something was funny, he didn't get it, I thought it was silly anyway, but -- you know how when you have to explain a joke it loses it completely? I explained it and he still didn't get it (this is a pretty high level student remember) so I ended up having to explain the history of the joke and pull it apart. He still didn't get it, so I gave up. It wasn't that important. I've planned the next lesson with him already, and the text book has a reading comp that's a long and very corny joke. I'm dreading it. Thing is it IS a good exercise so I'm going to do it. The book says you may need to explain it and if the student doesn't get it move on..... GAH! Chances of him getting it are; well, I'll see!
Stubble. I'm yet to see a stubbly Japanese guy. Most have hairless faces. Quite nice really. And as for wrinkles - the Japanese have to be pretty old before you see wrinkles on them. I have some students who, were they British for example, would have wrinkled 20 years previously. Most seem pretty line-free too. Lucky buggers!
On my way to meet my Japanese volunteer this morning, I was on an escalator descending to the street when suddenly an American voice behind me rings out: 'is that a foreigner I see behind me?' I had nowhere to run to and was walking in the same direction as him unfortunately. Anyway, he's a missionery who's been in Japan for 21 years, although his church has been there for 103 years, or 7000 years or something... Luckily he had to cross over eventually and I wasn't invited to the church!
The Japanese lesson was so-so and the cheeky gits thrust some papers onto me to correct into English... I figured the organisation could come in pretty handy some time, so did it....