Thursday, 23 April 2009

One Fishie Left

The other night I went to pick hub up and could probably have left twenty minutes earlier as he had started walking home!! He wasn't too intoxicated and was thankful yesterday for the early night. The rest of his office stayed out till half one drinking and belting out morning musume and southern allstars tunes at karaoke.

The principle of the local primary school came round after lunch yesterday. She spotted me as I was dropping the kiddly winks off at kindy and wanted to talk about today's English lesson. I told her she didn't need to come all the way to our house, that I would drop in before I picked the kids up that afternoon. But she insisted. I presumed that if she was that insistent on coming to the house then she would come in - hence I shined the bench for an extra thirty seconds and got some nice coffee ready in the maker. As it happened we spoke in the genkan!! I said 'douzo douzo' but obviously my not saying 'oagari kudasai' meant she felt she had to crouch on step in genkan.

From this year it has become compulsory in this prefecture (and the whole of Japan I think) to incorporate at least 20 hours (yes thats for the whole year) of English into the curriculum for the fifth and six years. There is a text book, a teachers manual and a listening CD. The assistant Language Teacher (bloke from America) for this city comes once a month - and so will cover half of these hours. I will be doing the rest. There is no rule to say you need a native English speaker but obviously this school wants one. There is is also no kind of testing at the end of the year to see if anything has actually sunk in.

Up until now I have had free reign and been able to teach what I want, how I want. I was teaching to the third and forth years at the same time and it was only once a month so really it was more of an 'eigo do asobo' type lesson.

Not anymore. Gone are my days of flashcards, fun games and enjoyment. The other native speaker apparently was made to just stand there and pronounce words and phrases. When I heard this I told the principal that if possible I didn't want to do that. What's the friggin point. They have a CD for that. She said yesterday though that the two Japanese teachers in charge of the 5th and 6th years will be 'holding' the lesson and I will be being asked to step in and pronounce words, assist, as necessary. SIGH. She also asked if I could please arrive forty minutes early today to talk to the teachers. About.... ??? How I should stand not looking bored??

I plan on preparing nada, zip, nothing. I have looked over the book but the principle was unsure as to exactly what the teachers had in mind for today. Never mind though, I know all the kids and there are only twenty of them anyway and is only for fifty minutes.

The principal doesn't think or communicate very well. I am in the middle of getting dinner sorted as come half one I will be non stop until after nine when my evening English class finishes. Half one to half five is primary school meeting with teachers, followed by English lesson, followed by own private English lessons times two, followed by pick the sproglets up, followed by dinner, followed by perhaps a nut out, followed by bath, followed by perhaps another nut out and some stories, followed by bed, followed by about fifteen minutes to get ready for eight pm class.

Just the thought of this afternoon tires me out. Needless to say all the house stuff had to be done this morning, a few errands taken care of, and now I am about to put my puffy feet up for an hour to save hub from having to massage them off my legs when he gets home late tonight.

Not really complaining though. Well, not too much. Thursdays are always the crap busy day and for that reason I usually expect the worst and am pleasantly surprised when it all goes smoothly and the kids are having a 'we love mummy' day.

So anyway, the reason for the title... It would appear that the 'smurfing wind' that swept over us a couple of nights back has left us with one fish standing, so to speak. I put the four that had made it to the bottom of the pole away yesterday but couldn't do anything about the other two as they were right at the top of twenty metre pole and wind had broken the rope meaning they were left flying at the top and no serious amount of pulling the other rope was going to help. I looked out this morning and one of the two has made emergency landing on the plum tree, leaving the 7 metre whopper flying alone. We have two poles to fly them on but decided to only fly one pole this year. Next year we wanted to fly two in honor of the bunster. However, a broken rope means no more fish on that pole, as i can't see my 80kg hub shimmying (sp??) up the flimsy twenty metre trunk to attach the rope again! Perhaps if he was pigmy from some forest tree shimmying tribe in Africa.

Well, off to get horizontal for an hour or so. Must... recharge... energy... supplies... for ... afternoon.


1 comment:

thefukases said...

ohhhh koinobori.... you had me wondering till the end.

No boys here so koinobori-less but now I know why my neighbour spends a month this time of year freaking out over sudden high winds. She is always racing home to get the fish in...

Good luck with eigo-nooto. I turned down a class for it as they were paying peanuts AND wanted me to do 30 min unpaid prep each week to help the teachers know the info....