Thursday, May 15, 2003

Trying to slowly rebuild my bridges...

Today I had culture class and unlike last week, it was actually interesting. Last week was basically a lecture on the history and background of the art of the tea ceremony (believe me, there`s actually an art to it), which I could barely understand. This week, however, we actually got to perform a pseudo-tea ceremony. We got to make the tea and even wear kimono (hopefully, I will be able to post a picture sometime soon). A tea ceremony, as many things Japanese, is not so much about drinking the tea as much as it is about the ceremony of preparing the tea. There`s a certain way of doing everything, from the way you clean the tea bowl to the way you place the hot water ladle on the water heater. Last week, I was thinking, "What`s the big deal?" but as I saw the culture class sensei perform part of the tea ceremony, I saw the beauty and grace in her every movement and the aesthetic value of all the objects she used and how she placed them in front of her. It`s almost like a dance, with each step planned and done in a certain way.

For the first time in a while, I received some good news: I received an award for being an "Outstanding Graduating Major in
Three-Languages/Japanese"! In case you do not know, as of May 31st, I will be an official graduate of the University of Delaware! Unfortunately, I won`t be there to receive the award so my professor offered to have one of my family members receive the award in my place. I hope that one of them will be able to be there on May 31st. Still, this piece of news makes me happy and has made my day.
It seems like the rainy season has already begun :-P It rained all day yesterday and it rained earlier today and has been cloudy all day. I asked one of my sensei if this is the beginning of the rainy season and he said, "Mada, mada...", not yet, not yet. Not looking forward to it.

Wednesday, May 14, 2003

At Mark`s request...my blog is back!
My apologies for not writing in a while....This time I actually have my reasons, which I will explain later...

On Monday, I will be going on an overnight trip with the rest of the Soka exchange students to the mountains in Gifu and Nagano prefectures. For the most part, I am looking forward to it because it will be an opportunity to see yet another part of Japan. Anyways, I don`t know if you have read in the news, but there is this wierd cult called the Pana Wave Laboratory that has been causing a stir in Japan. This cult believes that there are harmful energy/light waves that are in the air, so they wear white protecitve clothing. Apparently, they believe the end of the world is coming soon, so they have been travelling around central Japan in large groups, notably Gifu and Nagano prefectures, and have been blocking the roads there, causing problems with the police.

Anyways, today we were discussing the trip and it was mentioned that the Pana Wave cult has been reported to be around the area where we are going to travel to. Jojit read my mind exactly when he said, "If they`re there, we won`t be able to get to where we want to go". The teacher answered with something that I don`t remember and then, Jojit (not the "J" of my previous entries) said, "That`s ok...kenka suru, we`ll fight them!. Ryugakkusei (exchange students) versus the Pana Wave cult!" That`s so Jojit...Can you imagine it? All of us ryugakkusei storming out of the bus, fists in the air, and rushing towards the Pana Wave Cult and yelling "Aux armes!". Then Annie said, "You`d get arrested by the police and you`d be on TV and then you`d probably wave at the camera and say `Hi Mom!`." He probably would too....just joking, Jojit ;-) But anywayz, it was funny just imagining it...

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