Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Robbed ... Part 1 edited

This blog was first printed April 24th. I have made some corrections.

My husband and I went to Europe last month.
We stayed for 3 days in London, 4 days in Belgium and for 3 days in Paris.
Each country was very cold every day.
We have been to foreign countries many times but this time we had a bitter experience. I though it would be shameful to say.
But I dare to say a thing we experienced in London.
But I must tell you something that happened to us in London.
It was a rainy day. When we were walking near our hotel in the morning,
a man having a map said to us,
a man holding a map said to us,
"I am a tourist.
Please teach me how to go to Piccadilly Circus."
Please tell (show) me how to get to Piccadilly Circus."
We were too careless about this stranger.
But we noticed that he was suspicious.
But he looked suspicious
The moment I began to say to my husband that we should not get involved with that man,
other 2 men suddenly appeared.
2 other men suddenly appeared.

Monday, April 29, 2013

Puzzler Answers and SHOWA no HI

I'm still enjoying the time off. Actually M and I will take a trip to Akita and Aomori prefectures by Shinkansen. Sunsets, on-sens, good food, good drinks and good company. What more can anyone ask for? Puzzler Answers: CLICK HERE

Emperor Hirohito died on January 7, 1989. April 29 was subsequently no longer celebrated as The Emperor's Birthday but instead as Greenery Day, part of Japan's Golden Week. After a series of failed legislative attempts beginning in 2000, the April 29 holiday was finally renamed Shōwa Day in May 2005, and Greenery Day was moved from April 29 to May 4.
The holiday encourages public reflection of the turbulent 63 years of Hirohito's reign rather than glorifying the emperor himself. Hirohito's reign saw, among other things, the end of Taishō Democracy, the May 15 Incident, the February 26 Incident, the rise of Fascism, World War II, the post-war occupation, and the rise of Japan as an industrial and economic power.
YearsApril 29May 4
before 1985The Emperor's BirthdayNon-holiday
1985–1988The Emperor's BirthdayNational day of rest
1989–2006Greenery DayNational day of rest
2007–presentShōwa DayGreenery Day

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Puzzler Hints

I'm goin' fishin with Isamu today. He always catches more fish than I do but I look froward to enjoying the great outdoors. Puzzler Hints: CLICK HERE

HOME PROJECT for April 2013:  “notice” VS. “realize”

noticerealizeは両方とも「気づく」という意味の単語ですが、ニュアンスが少し違います。
noticeは見たり、聞いたりという、五感を通じて気づくのに対して、
realizeは頭を使って状況に気づく(認識する)感じです。

Ex1: I looked out the window and noticed people were using umbrellas. I realized it was raining.
私は窓の外を見て、人々が傘を差しているのに気づきました(のを見た)。雨が降っているのに気づきました(のが分かった。)
Ex2: We didn't notice what time it was.  (see
Ex3: I talked to "her" for 20 minutes before I realized that she was a man! (understand)

PS for everyone: If you ever notice any mistakes in my Blogs, please tell me. Thanks.

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Puzzler

Golden Week! Mine starts tomorrow. I just cannot wait! Puzler: CLICK HERE.

HOME PROJECT for April 2013:  “notice” VS. “realize”

noticerealizeは両方とも「気づく」という意味の単語ですが、ニュアンスが少し違います。
noticeは見たり、聞いたりという、五感を通じて気づくのに対して、
realizeは頭を使って状況に気づく(認識する)感じです。

Ex1: I looked out the window and noticed people were using umbrellas. I realized it was raining.
私は窓の外を見て、人々が傘を差しているのに気づきました(のを見た)。雨が降っているのに気づきました(のが分かった。)
Ex2: We didn't notice what time it was.  (see
Ex3: I talked to "her" for 20 minutes before I realized that she was a man! (understand)

PS for everyone: If you ever notice any mistakes in my Blogs, please tell me. Thanks.

Friday, April 26, 2013

Robbed in London Part 3

I said to him, "Perhaps, our money has been stolen."
We checked our wallets. Almost all our money was gone, stolen as expected.
We were easily deceived by a bogus detective.
We were disappointed. But we weren't injured by them.
So, we pulled ourselves together and looked for the police station.
We reported to the police. I explained about the state of affairs. Criminal's features, etc.
The police in London was very kind for us.
I talked to 3 policemen about the criminals.
I think I can't get stolen money back.
But the police in London sometimes send me e-mails about the criminal investigation.
Until now 4 times.
I had an unforgettable experience, but someday I'd like to go to England again.
Because I know that almost people are good.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Robbed in London Part 2

"Police! police!" they shouted showing a policeman's notebook.
They said to the tourist and us, "Show me your passports."
We showed them each passport.
They said, "No problem." And returned our passports.
Next, they ordered us to show our money.
First, I thought my husband and I were foreigners, so we were questioned by a police detective.
The tourist showed his wallet.
2 policemen checked his money and saying "No problem." they returned him it immediately.
My husband and I showed our wallets, too. They checked and returned immediately.
They said, "No problem. Go away."
I soon noticed that those three were in cahoots and our money must have been taken.
Because of the way they moved their hands was suspicious.
But my husband didn't notice and said "Let's go."
He didn't want to get involved with the policeman.

Part 3 tomorrow. Also I will edit this May 1st.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Robbed in London Part 1

One student recently visited Europe with her husband. They are both seasoned (experienced) travellers and can speak English pretty good. This is her story.

My husband and I went to Europe last month.
We stayed for 3 days in London, 4 days in Belgium and for 3 days in Paris.
Each country was very cold every day.
We have been to foreign countries many times but this time we had a bitter experience. I though it would be shameful to say. But I dare to say a thing we experienced in London.
It was a rainy day. When we were walking near our hotel in the morning, a man having a map said to us, "I am a tourist. Please teach me how to go to Piccadilly Circus."
We were too careless about this stranger.
But we noticed that he was suspicious. The moment I began to say to my husband that we should not get involved with that man, other 2 men suddenly appeared.

Part 2 tomorrow. Also I will correct this English next week April 30th.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Bon Voyage

 Bon Vogage is French for "Have a good trip." Our daughter, Eri, will study in Canada at the University of Winnipeg while home staying with a young Canadian family from April 30 till mid-December. The goal is to study English and become fluent. My reason is so she can take over my teaching duties here at my school some day. I hope she can teach the kids. But, she may have other ideas. Miwako made reservations at a cool Izakaya in Akasaka. Our family and M's sisters family came. Unfortunately, Rina had a previous engagement so she couldn' make it. After dinner and drinks 6 of us went to Karaoke. That was fun. I drank more there. I woke up at 3:45AM this AM so I don't remember going to sleep. But sleep I did. That was a lot of fun. Thanks, Miwako!

Monday, April 22, 2013

Puzzler Answers

Back top Monday and ready to GO! Puzzler Answers: CLICK HERE.

My weekend went something like this:
1. (Friday) massage.
2. Saturday 5:30AM RINRI Morning Seminar
3. New lessons at Kenkatsu Center. Some new faces and some old faces.
4. Go to Akasaka for Eri's Bon Voyage (Farewell) party. Miwako reserved a Izakaya room and a hotel room for the night.
5. Dinner and drinks at a cool place. They had beer on tap right at our table.
6. Karaoke with M,Y,E and two cousins. Some fun!
5. Sunday AM. Woke up in a hotel with all the ladies in my Japanese life. Drive home in the rain.
7. Brunch at Cocos
6. Bridge practice from 1PM to 5PM with M at Kenkatsu.
7. To the school to practice the violin for 30 minutes.
8. Home for some R and R. (Rest and Relaxation).
How about you?

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Puzzler Hints

Got bridge practice today. Hope I'm not too hung over. Hungover? Yes, I drank last night at the party. Oh well. Puzzler Hints: CLICK HERE.

HOME PROJECT for April 2013:  “notice” VS. “realize”

noticerealizeは両方とも「気づく」という意味の単語ですが、ニュアンスが少し違います。
noticeは見たり、聞いたりという、五感を通じて気づくのに対して、
realizeは頭を使って状況に気づく(認識する)感じです。

Ex1: I looked out the window and noticed people were using umbrellas. I realized it was raining.
私は窓の外を見て、人々が傘を差しているのに気づきました(のを見た)。雨が降っているのに気づきました(のが分かった。)
Ex2: We didn't notice what time it was.  (see
Ex3: I talked to "her" for 20 minutes before I realized that she was a man! (understand)

PS for everyone: If you ever notice any mistakes in my BLOGs, please tell me. Thanks.




Saturday, April 20, 2013

Puzzler

Another cool weekend is upon us. We've got a big Farewell party for Eri tonight. Coming soon to a  BLOG near you. Puzzler: CLICK HERE.

HOME PROJECT for April 2013:  “notice” VS. “realize”

noticerealizeは両方とも「気づく」という意味の単語ですが、ニュアンスが少し違います。
noticeは見たり、聞いたりという、五感を通じて気づくのに対して、
realizeは頭を使って状況に気づく(認識する)感じです。

Ex1: I looked out the window and noticed people were using umbrellas. I realized it was raining.
私は窓の外を見て、人々が傘を差しているのに気づきました(のを見た)。雨が降っているのに気づきました(のが分かった。)
Ex2: We didn't notice what time it was.  (see
Ex3: I talked to "her" for 20 minutes before I realized that she was a man! (understand)

PS for everyone: If you ever notice any mistakes in my Blogs, please tell me. Thanks.

Yesterday's Super Scrabble answers:  ZOO  JET  GOTTEN  BOLSTER

Friday, April 19, 2013

Super Scrabble

This was a very good week. I am still on the wagon. I wake up every day not having to think about when or how much to drink. It really is a stress-free life for me. Of course, I want to drink. I want to drink every day. But, that would be ridiculous. So, here I sit as sober as a judge trying to think of what to do. So, I write a BLOG or two. This one is a Super Scrabble BLOG. It is from the Super Scrabble archives. It is one of the puzzles we did on April 31st-Super Scrabble day. The cool words are:
MALICE = 悪意
TOTTER= よろめく
FABLE= たとえ話
QUAINT= 面白い
Can you guess the blanks? Answers tomorrow.

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Blood donation

I donate blood regularly. I went last year October 1st and then again December 25th-Christmas Day! This is my 37th time on this card. I had 50 times on the last card. My father always donated blood. His logic was "Donating blood is the same as getting an oil change in your car." I'm also sure that he felt the same as I do. That is, donating blood is a very easy way to give something to people who need it. And it doesn't cost any money. It took about one hour at Omiya station (see pic). They have really streamlined the process; that means that they have made is simpler to get ready. Of course they put a needle in the veins on both arms so there is a little prick; but not really any pain. Actually when I donated this time I didn't even realize when I was finished. It was over in no time.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Kominkan Clean-up

As you may or may not know, the Japanese are very neighborhood or, community, service minded. By that I mean that they work together in the neighborhood or community. They have the Bon-odori (dance) festival in the summer and the sports day festival at the same place. It is usually a neighborhood park or community center. Our softball team practiced every Sunday morning at 6AM at such a place. Since this is a community center, the community is responsible for cleaning it. Every month a different group goes to clean the area outside and inside the building. It is our groups' turn this month. 18 of us came. We started at 8AM last Sunday and finished in about 45 minutes. Five ladies cleaned inside and the gents cleaned outside. We have to come again on the 28th then we are done for the year. Look at the picture. Do you notice how clean everything is?

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Violin debut

Last Saturday at the restaurant Viento the Beginners English circle (see pic) had a party. I took up the violin last June and have been taking lessons and practicing and recently rehearsing with Mari. She is also a student of the circle as well as a wonderful piano/electone teacher. We had 4 rehearsals and we did a performance this night after a very delicious dinner. At first we played two songs. I got lost during both so it was pretty uncool (Video). I was surprised at how I couldn't hear the violin while the three of us played. They let me try again later and that was much better but I was still nervous BUT made less mistakes. Another group played and all (except for me) were so very good. I will practice, practice, practice. Thank you all very much. VIDEO CLICK HERE.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Puzzler Answers

The dreaded task? Shopping! A very necessary evil, me thinks. And today, back to work. Puzzler Answers: CLICK HERE.

My weekend went like this:
1. Up at 4:15AM and go to the RINRI Morning Seminar.
2. Home to breakfast then school to teach from 9AM to noon.
3. Do some BLOGs and puzzler and then by taxi to Kenaktsu to teach the final O-San's 13 lesson.
4. Miwako takes me to Viento for the Beginner's party and musical extravaganza.
5. I "play" the violin with Mari on piano and Hiroshi on bass fiddle. I am lost the first 2 songs. But, recover somewhat for the second set. Dinner and drinks was fun for all.
6. Home at 11PM to sleep.
7. Up at 5:30 and do Spanish week review.
8. Go to clean the neighborhood Kominkan.
9. Do the thing I really dislike-SHOPPING. SOGO department store (my favorite store in Japan) had a sale. I bought a jacket and 2 pair of slacks or summer.
10. Donate blood.
11. Home for some much deserved R n' R.
12. Watch TV.
13. Sleep at 10PM.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Puzzler Hints

As I said, I will do the dreaded task today. I'll tell you what it is tomorrow. BTW, I had my violin debut last night. Thank you all very much. especially Mari. She is quite the excellent teacher. Puzzler Hints: CLICK HERE.

HOME PROJECT for April 2013:  “notice” VS. “realize”

noticerealizeは両方とも「気づく」という意味の単語ですが、ニュアンスが少し違います。
noticeは見たり、聞いたりという、五感を通じて気づくのに対して、
realizeは頭を使って状況に気づく(認識する)感じです。

Ex1: I looked out the window and noticed people were using umbrellas. I realized it was raining.
私は窓の外を見て、人々が傘を差しているのに気づきました(のを見た)。雨が降っているのに気づきました(のが分かった。)
Ex2: We didn't notice what time it was.  (see
Ex3: I talked to "her" for 20 minutes before I realized that she was a man! (understand)

PS for everyone: If you ever notice any mistakes in my BLOGs, please tell me. Thanks.

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Puzzler

The weekend again and I have so much free time. So, I will do something I really do not like to do! Guess what. Puzzler: CLICK HERE.

HOME PROJECT for April 2013:  “notice” VS. “realize”

noticerealizeは両方とも「気づく」という意味の単語ですが、ニュアンスが少し違います。
noticeは見たり、聞いたりという、五感を通じて気づくのに対して、
realizeは頭を使って状況に気づく(認識する)感じです。

Ex1: I looked out the window and noticed people were using umbrellas. I realized it was raining.
私は窓の外を見て、人々が傘を差しているのに気づきました(のを見た)。雨が降っているのに気づきました(のが分かった。)
Ex2: We didn't notice what time it was.  (see
Ex3: I talked to "her" for 20 minutes before I realized that she was a man! (understand)

PS for everyone: If you ever notice any mistakes in my BLOGs, please tell me. Thanks.

Answers from yesterdays Super Scrabble BLOG
intro  treaty  combat/brags  zealots

Friday, April 12, 2013

Super Scrabble

Here is a Super Scrabble game that is left over. It is not one of the 8 games that we completed at the Super Scrabble festival March 31st. This is from one of my lessons here at my school. Cool words:

DUNCE = a person who is stupid or slow at learning. リック
PORCH = a small area at the entrance to a building, covered by a roof and often has walls. ベランダ
VETTING = checking a person's past life and career in order to decide if they are suitable for a particular job (screen). 検査する。
FIB = a lie about something that is not important. うそをつく。
BLOAT = to swell in an unpleasant way. 。。。ふくらませる。

Can you guess the blanks? Answers tomorrow.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Dining out

I took my family out to dinner last Saturday. Of course, Miwako paid and I drove. One of our favorite restaurants is Waizu. It is a Okonomiyaki place. It is here in Ageo, west side. We go here 3 or 4 times a year. It is quite delicious and the style of cooking (grilling) by yourself is fun. I don't remember any places like this in America. Americans like to grill or BBQ in their own backyards in the summer. That is fun, too. But afterwards there is a lot of clean up. Generally, the man (father) does the cooking. The mom does all the food prep and then the dish washing while the dad does the grill cleaning. And without a doubt, the father drinks lots of beer because it is hot and very hard work! BTW did you notice I am drinking a ginger ale?

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Higashi Kindergarten

I also teach at the Higashi kindergarten in Okegawa. They had their Entrance ceremony last Saturday. I can't attend as I teach on Saturdays so my daughter, Eri, and the lovely Miwako go as RAM English Service representatives. Of course, they also introduce the teachers and the English lesson. They idea is to promote (PR) our business and say HELLO to the parents and all. My older daughter gave the greetings once and then Eri took over and has done in three years in a row. Miwako has also done it. Anyway, Eri has become quite good at it I heard. The bus driver/handy man told her that her Japanese has improved since last year. He doesn't realize that Eri is Japanese. Good job and thank you, Eri!
ANSWERS from yesterday's BLOG: photo op = photo opportunity.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Mida Kindergarten

I was up on stage again at the Mida Kindergarten. It was for their Entrance ceremony. The new kids have registered and will start coming next week. Basically the ceremony was to introduce the home room teachers to the moms and dads. They also introduced the bus drivers, the office staff and the English teacher; namely, yours truly. I was the last to be introduced. When they did so I moved quickly to the front of the stage. I said in English "Good morning! How are you?" as I do at all my kindergarten lessons. I then said this is a good shutter chance. (photo op). So, I took their picture. It got a big laugh from the audience. Lessons start next week. I can't wait! BTW  photo op is an abbreviaiton. What is the full word? Answer tomorrow.

Monday, April 8, 2013

Puzzler Answers

Puzzler Answers: CLICK HERE and back to work. But, I do have some free time this month. My weekend went like this:
1. RINRI Morning Seminar was very good. The speaker told us how she tried to change her daughter-in-law. It didn't work so she, herself, changed. And PRESTO! All are happy.
2. To school to teach 9 to 11. Then no students at 11AM. Do computer work.
3. A lady came to discuss new lesson in Hanuki. I found a teacher. All looks good to go next Tuesday.
4. Teach at Kenkatsu then home to nap. Practice violin at home.
5. Our bridge lesson was cancelled. BUT the storm never came. So, M and I called everyone to meet and practice.
6. Sunday AM early RINRI monthly meet.
7. Go to play bridge.
8. Go out to dinner with my family.
9. Home to watch some tube (TV).
10. Sleep.

Wish me luck.  I am on the wagon again.

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Puzzler Hints

On this Sunday, I have a RINRI meet at 8:30AM and then bridge at 1PM and then free time tonight. How about you? Puzzler Hints: CLICK HERE.

HOME PROJECT for April 2013:  “notice” VS. “realize”

noticerealizeは両方とも「気づく」という意味の単語ですが、ニュアンスが少し違います。
noticeは見たり、聞いたりという、五感を通じて気づくのに対して、
realizeは頭を使って状況に気づく(認識する)感じです。

Ex1: I looked out the window and noticed people were using umbrellas. I realized it was raining.
私は窓の外を見て、人々が傘を差しているのに気づきました(のを見た)。雨が降っているのに気づきました(のが分かった。)
Ex2: We didn't notice what time it was.  (see
Ex3: I talked to "her" for 20 minutes before I realized that she was a man! (understand)

PS for everyone: If you ever notice any mistakes in my BLOGs, please tell me. Thanks.

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Puzzler

Here is the weekend. I am free tonight. Whatever shall I do? Puzzler: CLICK HERE.

HOME PROJECT for April 2013:  “notice” VS. “realize”

noticerealizeは両方とも「気づく」という意味の単語ですが、ニュアンスが少し違います。
noticeは見たり、聞いたりという、五感を通じて気づくのに対して、
realizeは頭を使って状況に気づく(認識する)感じです。

Ex1: I looked out the window and noticed people were using umbrellas. I realized it was raining.
私は窓の外を見て、人々が傘を差しているのに気づきました(のを見た)。雨が降っているのに気づきました(のが分かった。)
Ex2: We didn't notice what time it was.  (see
Ex3: I talked to "her" for 20 minutes before I realized that she was a man! (understand)

PS for everyone: If you ever notice any mistakes in my BLOGs, please tell me. Thanks.

Friday, April 5, 2013

Two foreigners

I had two boys in the lesson while one was absent. One hour earlier a mother called me. She and her son had done a trial lesson in this class two weeks earlier and had scheduled to come again this day. But, she had to cancel and wanted to rebook for next week. I talked to the two boys and they agreed, happily,  to have their Game Day lesson  this day so we could show the new kid what we actually do in a typical Eiken 5 lesson. So, we were minding our own  business when suddenly two foreigners appeared outside my school. There is a church nearby and sometimes these missionaries come by. They guy on the left is from Texas. His Japanese was very good. The guy on the right is from California. They were nice guys and left soon. Amen.

Thursday, April 4, 2013

RINRI speech

 I was asked to make a speech at an early AM Morning Seminar in Tokyo. The request was made one month ago and the day finally arrived last Friday. I went by train. I finished teaching at 9PM Thursday and arrived at the hotel at 10:45. (I had a Bento lunch on the train.) As always, the people are friendly and attentive. My speech was two parts. The first was about my coming to Japan and how I became a RINRI member. The second part was about my RINRI experiences and the benefits of the study. I made a special point to tell about driving my daughter to the station every weekday morning. After the seminar we all had breakfast and all the members comment on my speech. I was surprised to find that three of them do the same thing: drive their daughters to the station every morning. I didn't realize there are so many kind parents here in Japan.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Bridge at my school

M and I were both free last Sunday. So, we contacted three regular bridge members and asked them to come to our school and practice bridge together. They said OK and stayed from 1PM till 5PM. So what is bridge?
Contract bridge, or simply bridge, is a trick-taking game using a standard 52-card deck. It is played by four players in two competing partnerships, with partners sitting opposite each other around a table. Millions of people play bridge worldwide in clubs, tournaments, online and with friends at home. It is one of the world's most popular card games, particularly among seniors.
The game consists of several deals each progressing through four phases: dealing the cards, the auction (also referred to as bidding), playing the hand, and scoring the results.
It is difficult at first but little by little you can learn it. And it becomes fun-just like English!

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Super Scrabble Day

 First, let me say "Thank you" to the 6 people who came to the event. As you can see in the pics, two came in the AM and then four in the PM. I went by bicycle even though rain threatened. (It looked very much like rain). I set up the room in five minutes when the first two members arrived at 9:00. We played three games. I played for two people. We finished at noon and then I had a hamburger lunch alone at the restaurant in the center. At 1:00 three other members arrived. The bad news was that the one who was coming by bicycle got a flat tire! She told us that she fixed it by herself when she arrived around 1:30. We all played until 4:55. We then cleaned up the room, locked up and went our separate ways. I collected 5,800 yen in donations for charity. Even two people who didn't come donated. Thank you all very much.

Monday, April 1, 2013

No Puzzle Answers

That's right: there are was no Puzzler this weekend BUT there was a weekend!
1. I didn't go to my RINRI Morning Seminar. I wanted to rest one more day with my bronchitis.
2. Taught 3 kids lesson from 9 to noon. However 2 kids at 9, 2 kids came at 10 and only 1 kid came at 11
AM.
3. Taught my last Beginner's class. It was fun as usual.
4. Taught the O-San's 13 group. Excellent as always. Such a fun group, eager group.
5. Back to my school.
6. Violin practice 90 minutes.
7. e-mails.
8. Home to dinner, watch TV and sleep at 10:30.
9. And then of course yesterday was Super Scrabble Day At the Kenkatsu Center. See tomorrow's BLOG for details.

I look forward to a busy April.