JPin10 is my new idea to be able to write about Japan and not feel like I have a novel of notes locked away in my brain to decipher.
Truth is, I need way more than 10 minutes to describe most days, but 10 minutes is a good amount of time to see where we will get.
I don’t have any specific topic in mind, but my goal is to write non-stop for 10 minutes, so let’s begin.
I have been eating a lot of rice since I’ve been here. Haha. Maybe seems typical. I guess it is. But I seroiusly never ate rice in the states, unless it was in sushi or came with a plate out to dinner. but here, well, I have a rice cooker, for one. It’s so easy to cook rice. Sometimes I even freeze it and use it for lunches. wow so innovative… i know. anyways. rice fucking tastes good. I mean just rice. by itself. before, i would be like, ok, why would anyone ever need this much PLAIN RICE? but i get it now. it is not something i can explain. it’s sort of.. comforting. also the history behind why they eat rice at most every meal is also really interesting. no time to go into that now.
what i want to talk about is i get a lot of exercise here. i dont have a car and it’s awesome because it’s not even really cold out yet. i walk about 25 minutes to and from school every day. my office is on the fourth floor. so on any given day, i walk up and down 4 flights of stairs 3-4 times. Good exercise!
speaking of exercise, i go to Yoga weekly. it is awesome and much different from going to a yoga place in madison. of course, not all yoga places are the same in the states, just as im positive not all are the same in japan.
at this yoga place — Yoga Sara — it is classes of about 4-6 women. our teacher studied yoga in America. I believe she was in Arizona and New York. Each week there is usually a theme. this week was opening up your shudders. so we do many exercises related to that. and we also do pair work — never did that in the states, really. it’s where you help you partner achieve a pose or stretch. for example, we did exercises to work up to doing a handstand last week — CHALLENGE!
In fact, I did a sort-of-backwards hand stand with the help of the wall haha> and this week we did bridges. — haha not much total progress on that, but im getting there.
Eiko — who is the teacher — also helped me realize parts of my body are super tight that I didn’t even realize. For instance, my ankles and toes are very inflexible or “katai” which is like saying they are “hard,” or inflexible.
Did I mention 80% of the class is in Japanese? That’s a little confusing at times, but mostly has helped me a lot to pick more japanese up, especially with directions (left>hidari and right>migi) and body parts (leg>ashi, ankle>ashikubi and neck> kubi). It’s been great!
Lastly, after each session, and I mean EVERY session, we have tea and treats and conversation. The tea and treats are always different and delicious. We speak a lot in Japanese and Alana (the other person who works at the high school with me (also from Wi) translates for me when it’s too complicated.
The yoga class has been one of the best experiences since I’ve been here. It’s helped me feel more apart of the community and has given me a sense of routine from week to week.
(Which I think… I might desperately need…)
Wow! That was a decent amount. Sorry for any typos, etc. It is what it is!