Tuesday, December 05, 2006

crash course

A word to the wise:

If you ever find yourself doing a Japanese language correspondence course, DO NOT leave the first set of monthly materials and test to the very last minute. It just isn't fun trying to learn the 27 different "giving and receiving" verbs" in a day. Then re-doing the entire test again the next night because you realized you are a dummy and did it all backwards.

I still don't understand all the uses of the "giving and receiving" verbs, but like the book says at one point, "But don't be afraid of misusing them - try to use them over and over again. As your mistakes get pointed out, you will soon master the proper usage." Uh. OK. The month of December is as good a time to start learning these verbs as the month of November should have been, I guess!

Anyway, if I had mailed in yesterday's version of the test, it would have been a spectacular BOMB. But my head kicked back into gear this evening, I re-read all the verb rules, then worked my way (again) through the 40-question test. Now that I've changed a good chunk of my answers, I might actually pass (I need 70%).

In more interesting news, we went to Tokyo this weekend. That should be the second word to the wise: Don't go to Tokyo for a long weekend (Thurs-Sun) when you should be staying home, learning the "giving and receiving" verbs. But you know what? I had such a good time, though I battled sickness and ill health for part of it. On Saturday, I started developing sores in both corners of my mouth (not quite cold sores, but dang did they ever hurt) - they're almost gone now, thank goodness - as well as a strange nasty leg rash on BOTH shins, which isn't gone yet, sadly, but also isn't getting any worse, thankfully. And, to cap it all off, Randal had a sore toe. But regardless, there was WAY more walking around Tokyo than should be attempted by persons of our advanced ages* - the main wanderings were to Akihabara for electronic goodies, Shinjuku (twice) for people-watching and seeing the view from the high-up-in-the-sky Government Offices, Kabuki-cho (red-light district of Shinjuku) for judging how Tokyo stacks up against Amsterdam, and Harajuku for ritzy shopping and cos-play kids (sorry, Simon, I found them slightly disappointing and somewhat Disneylandish).

It's late here, so I'm going to leave it at that for now and go to bed. I will post pictures soon, however. I'm hoping to get (mostly) caught up on picture posting before we leave for Christmas in 3 weeks (yay!).

* And, obviously, failing health. Aaaahhh, if only I were 22 again. (For those who don't know, Kaila is a fellow JET from Ottawa posted south(ish) of Osaka. She's very cool, but I had no idea she was so young (or that we shared a b-day).)

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