Kyoto Bound

Posted: March 22, 2016 in Uncategorized

I’m charging up before I make the trek over to Kyoto today.  Charging up as in myself with 2 warm cans of coffee (yes, cans!) and secondly my laptop.  I’m literally sitting in the lobby of my hotel since it is the only area that has an American power outlet.  Last night, one of the hotel workers at the front desk suggested that I go to Bic Camera to buy a power adapter for Japanese outlets.  However, when I came back the one in my room required a screwdriver for the ground connector.  They didn’t have a screwdriver for me to use in the lobby or it was just lost in translation.  Ok, back to coffee.  I’ll update this with more trip notes once my coffee has kicked in and my laptop is all charged up.

Ohayoo Japan

Posted: March 21, 2016 in Uncategorized
It’s around 6:30am on Tuesday morning here in Japan.  I arrived in Japan late Sunday night.  On top of that, my connecting flight in Incheon was delayed 15 minutes and held up on the runway for another 15-20 minutes.  I was pretty drained so I fell asleep as soon I got on the plane.  It was probably around 3am back home.  Landed in Haneda and stayed at the hotel which was connected to the airport so that was pretty convenient since I arrived at about 11:30pm and still had to wait for my bag at baggage claim.  I rarely travel with a suitcase that I need to pick up a baggage claim.  However, this is my first long trip in quite a while.  My previous international trip was to Vancouver B.C which isn’t as far as Japan.
I woke up at 7:00am on Monday.  It was a holiday in Japan.  Vernal Equinox day.  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vernal_Equinox_Day It’s also the start of spring.  I don’t believe there was as many people out as a regular business day but it was pretty crowded everywhere nonetheless. …
Meh..my laptop is about to die and the outlet is a uses a different power adapter.  Go figure.  More to come later.

Sick

Posted: March 14, 2016 in Uncategorized

A week ago I caught a flu like sickness.  It might’ve been the flu.  It was more of an intense sinus cold.  I was down for the count all of last weekend and most of Monday.  I was almost recovered on Tuesday and worked from home on Wednesday just to minimize the risk of spreading it around at work even more than it was going around already.

I probably watched:

Had:

  • 2 packs of cough, vitamin c drops.
  • 3 packets of thera flu
  • 2 aspirin
  • 4 tylenol
  • a gallon of oJ
  • 3 bowl of pho.

Crazy. Now I’m trying to catch up from last week before my trip to Japan.

Writing

Posted: February 17, 2016 in Uncategorized

In the last couple weeks, I’ve occasionally started to write words out in hiragana.  This helped me remember some of the characters actually.  Tonight I started writing out a few words and even some sentences.  It’s a challenge but once I get a sentence put together it’s quite a mini accomplishment.  As one of my lessons got cancelled – some hiragana writing practice tonight:

  • misc characters
  • love
  • stomach
  • to meet
  • to chase
  • many/much
  • blue
  • red
  • squid
  • I (watashi)
  • Ed
  • is
  • I am Ed
  • peace
  • please

I’ve actually also reviewed the main characters of katakana but now I just need to study and review these as well.  My name, and what I wrote out, is actually in katakana and not hiragana.

Feb Counts

Posted: February 16, 2016 in Uncategorized

I have a massive headache at the moment so this will be short.  Here’s some quick stats of the last few weeks.

I’ve been taking Japanese Lessons.  I’m starting my 6th week.

  • 18.5 lesson hours
  • 250 book vocabulary (Probably have another 150 from just notes)
  • 277 flashcards.

As far as working out goes, I’ve been pretty good at sticking to my every other day schedule at the boxing gym or 24 hour.  Even got up this morning for a walk.  Would like to do that all week but it may or may not be realistic with lessons, studying, and work projects.

Groove

Posted: February 4, 2016 in Uncategorized

Finding the groove.  Now that I’ve gotten my list down it’s time to make small daily habits for that incremental and gradual progress.

Gym was closed on Monday.  So I missed a couple days with workouts – Monday and Tuesday.

My apps of the week:

  • japanese (kana/kanji app)
  • memrise
  • quizlet

 

The B List

Posted: February 2, 2016 in Uncategorized

A somewhat non-climatic but productive weekend.  I was able to clean out a portion of my garage and subsequently the room for my home office.  I am really enjoying my Friday Japanese lessons.  The time flies by and I feel like I’m hanging out with a friend.

On that note, last week,  I had a ton (abnormal) amount of Japanese lessons.  I guess it could be normal, as it was initial eval lessons for my future tutors/teachers/sensees for the most part.  After the completion of my third week – I’ve narrowed it down and found my 2 Japanese sensees and likely my B list teacher for bi-weekly lessons.  There’s also a B list and C list.  I’ll likely contact B list when I need to focus on something specific through my interactions with the A list.

Most of the teachers I interacted with were great, there were a couple that seemed like it was their first time or they are just starting out and they don’t really have a plan or syllabus except to go through the basic greetings which is ground zero for learning Japanese.  It’s pretty much how most of the beginner books start out.  There were a couple that were very critical and some that were very patient.

When I first set out on looking for a Japanese tutor I didn’t exactly know what I was looking for.  While conversation, reading, and writing are pillars of learning a new language they are each different and unique in their own ways.  They each present their own challenges.  For instance I really wanted to be great at all 3.  Now, I would like to focus on conversation and reading.  While learning how to write all the kanji characters would definitely help in learning it is difficult and there are a number of characters to memorize.

Here are a few sites that I’ve tried for tutors:

  • Verbling
  • Wyzant
  • Italki

My next blog post I’ll mention some apps that I’ve tried out.