Wednesday, January 29, 2014

foreigners and relgions

"Probably" here in Japan many people especially young people say " we don't have a particular religion." On the other hand though they don't have a strong faith, foreigners who come  or live in Japan say " my religion is ----". When we talk with them, if we don't know their religion well, it's sometimes difficult to understand them.

And, though I say "I don't have a particular religion", my character seems to be built by Buddhism.
I don't know about Buddhism very well, but some friends who are from foreign countries say "Oh, you idea comes from Buddhism." It's interesting that I don't know about Buddhism very well, but other people who have a faith, know about other religions.

The other day I talked with a lady who has a (mild) Jewish faith. We talked about volunteering which means doing something  for free. ( I read English picture books at library, I go to nursery school to do English activities for free.)
What she said was very interesting. "The good point of Christian faith is that they have an open mind to volunteer for others. The people who have the Jewish faith tend to be interested in only the people how have the Jewish faith."
In my case, I don't have a strong volunteer spirit. So I always think about my volunteer activities (or I always think whether it's a volunteer activity or it's my hobby.) So sometimes I think   that if I were a Christian, I would never hesitate my (volunteer) activities.

Recently I became a friend with a Indian lady who has the Hindu faith and is a  strict vegetarian.
It's fun to talk with her, but sometimes we are surprised at each other.

Before knowing others, I need to understand what is Buddhism, --- though I don't like to read such kind of books.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

School uniforms

Have you ever worn school uniforms? The other day I talked with my students about school uniforms.
Here in Utsunomiya they have school uniforms in most of junior high schools and high schools.
School uniforms are usually separated into two groups. In girls' case, one is a blazer type and the other is a sailor type, and in boy's case , one is also a blazer type and the other is a stand-up collar type.
When we were talking about them, there were three students. Each of them goes to different school. They have a school uniform but each of them is different.

The good points are that ---
It's easy to wear without worrying about what to wear on the day. Students wearing a school uniform look the same, so we don't need to compare with others.
A school uniform is really useful, it's a kind of formal wear. So when we have to attend to a ceremony such as  a wedding ceremony (though girls wear more bright clothes.), and a funeral.

The bad points are that
They are  a little bit dirty because they are not so often washed.
And a girl said that she often mistakes her friend for others because they look the same, and she often mistakes her school uniform for others when they change the school uniforms into their training wears, because their school uniforms look the same.

For the youth it's a usual thing to break rules, so at school they have a dress inspection once a week or several times a month. Students are checked whether they wear school uniforms keeping the rules by skirt length, hair style, front hair (bangs?), eyebrow, etc.
A student said it was too strict.
Another student said it was trouble some. and she also said "it's unnecessary, waste of time. Because I wear them neatly, so I don't need to be checked, why I have to go to the cold hallway to get such an unnecessary inspection."
These days girl students tend to shorten their skirt length.Do you know how the girls shorten their skirt length?  They fold the top of the skirt twice or three times.

A student mentioned COSPLE which means costume play. Some adults enjoy costume playing. When someone cosplays as a high school student, they usually wear a sailor-style uniform. Actually a sailor-style uniform is popular among high school students, though they are not accepted by most of high schools.
Additionally I've never worn a sailor-style uniform so I had wanted to wear it. 

Monday, January 20, 2014

a book

This is a Japanese book. The title is --- though it's my translation, "the elderly who are liked by others & the elderly who are not liked by others."

This winter vacation I was knocked by my mother's nonstop talking. (You can say bossy talking, selfish talking --etc.)  I know it's really difficult to change her, because she lives alone  for a long time, so she doesn't use to adjust to others. And my daughters say "it's you in the future". I agree with them. So I bought this book to reconsider myself.

The contents were not so special, reasonably enough.
The author classifies brain into two types, boring brain and happy brain.
He suggests 4 ways to avoid having boring brain.

Don't pretend like being young. (though I pretend like being old enough)
Don't act self-importantly (though I tend to say that in my time ---)
Don't realize yourself it means don't say that when I get old, finally I realize what the life is.)
Don't be proud of yourself. (Well I don't agree with it, when we get old, we are qualified to proud of ourselves.)

I'd like to give this book to my mother, but if I did, she must be really angry.
So for me in the future, I put the book somewhere to be able to seen it --- it means toilet must be the best place for me and for "Yuki".

Additionally, when I was a child, the elderly had been a little bit arrogant, a little bit selfish and everybody would accept them. Nowadays we seen not to afford to accept such the elderly. Current life is getting difficult to live for both of the young and the elderly.

Wednesday, January 08, 2014


Have you ever heard of the name of TODA NATSUKO. She is a subtitle editor. In Japan foreign movies are subtitled in Japanese, though these days dubbed versions are increased. But making a dubbed version is expensive, so subtitled versions still remain. I heard that this culture which means subtitled movies in Japanese is a Japanese culture. Usually subtitled movies are for the deaf. Probably almost 100% Japanese people can read Japanese, so we have such a culture.
But there are not so many professional subtitle editors in Japan. She is one of them.

I went to listen to her lecture. She is now 77 years old. Her behavior is very nice, like being in the 40's. And her talking is really clear. Of course the contents were nice and her behavior made me surprised. Because she is just two years older than my mother.

Why she loos so active? One reason is that she is always surrounded by new experiments through new movies. Keeping a job must make her active.

Why she looks so strong? One reason is that she is single, so she learnt to live without depending others.

After her talking, many people asked her about movies, and her English.
I wanted to ask her about her senior life after retiring her job, but --- I couldn't.
Probably in her case, she ,must have lots of helpers, she can keep her life in an apartment.

Well, well, anyway, lots of young people came to listen to her.
I wish I could be a such senior to which many young people would listen to. My daughters and my mother don't listen to me.

Monday, January 06, 2014

Job has started.

Yuki went to his office. And I called an advertising agency to ask posting my English school fliers.
It is the first day to work.

Last night we went to ASHIKAGA to see a garden with wonderful illumination.
Though it was very cold, it was wonderful. This park is really popular for wisterias. We've take our mother in spring before. Usually in the season of wisterias, this park is crowded with adults. But this time it was crowded with families. The business strategy of this park seems to be in success.
I read an interesting report.

Why Is Time Management Important?

You gain extra productive hours
Your efficiency and productivity increase
You have more control over your life
Spend More time for enjoyment
All of them are collect.
When I was busy as a mother, I used to do time management.
But now, I don't want to do time management.
Now I'm free from lots of necessary things what I have to do.
So at first I want enjoy my free time, and I want to chose what I want to do.
I want a laid-back life. I leaned the term "laid-back" from my friend. I want to use this time in a good meaning.
Well, well, it's time to go to work out. 

Friday, January 03, 2014

Happy new year

 Happy New Year, though three days has already past.
On the New Year's day, my mother, our daughters, Yuki and I were saw the wonderful rising sun from the upstairs window.
Then we celebrated New Year with our homemade OSECHI.
OSECHI is a Japanese traditional feast for the day. This time my younger daughter came here two days ago, so we made them together. Do you remember each dish has a special meaning. If you are interested in OSECHI, please check my previous blog.
Then we were going to go to a shrine, but it was too crowded, and a lot of people were waiting to pray in a long line. So we just saw the gate of shrine from the window of our car.

Then my mother came back to TOKYO by train.
Then Our elder daughter T and I went seeing a friend who was studying even on the New Year's day in a laboratory of Utsunomiya college. Yuki and the younger daughter M were resting at home. At night T went seeing her friends who went to junior high school together.
The others were resting at home, it means Yuki was drinking.

On 2 T drove to TOKYO with Yuki. According to Yuki, her driving skill was getting better. She seems to have a car in Tokyo, but----.
On the other hand, M and I went to Tokyo by bullet train. Because her belly felt bloated easily. (Did I tell you that she is four month pregnant.)
M's husband came to Tokyo station, and they came back to their house. The others attend Yuki's relatives reunion. And we dropped by my mother's house and met my brother's family and went back to Utsunomiya.
What busy days they were. Fortunately during this new year's vacation, it was warm than I expected.
Well, our silent day has come back.
Now I'm thinking about New Year's resolution.

I was always thinking how I use "time" effectively. Now I have to change the way. I try to think how I use "time" with satisfaction. For example, I used to cook by myself to "save" money. it means if I were rich I could hire a made.  Well, well, now I can afford to buy prepared food at a good quality store, though it's sometimes. So we could buy OSECHI at a good quality department store, but I didn't. I enjoyed making OSECHI, Of course some people prefer going abroad to cooking at home.

2014 has started. Let's enjoy this year together.