that matter). I hope that everyone out there in Internet-land is doing
well. It has been a fun couple of months for us here in Japan. Now on
with the news!
Signe and I are doing great as always. Japan is treating us well. Signe
is really getting into Kimono's and wants to make one for herself. She
has also picked up painting so she is quite busy these days. She is also
still working for one of the local restaruants making cakes about once a
week. For her birthday/Valentine's Day we went to Hiroshima (which is
about 2 hours from us) and watched "Lord of the Rings: Return of the
King." That was really fun. Afterwards we went to a great garlic
restaruant and had coffee afterwards. We had a great time.
Work is going great for me here. I love my job. Working with the kids
can be really rewarding. I go to elementary schools about once a week
and I have been getting better at making lesson plans and following
through with them. At the junior high school, where I go once a week, I
am basically an assistant to the Japanese English teacher. hat means
most of the time I am a human tape player, but that is fine with me.
Sometimes we have a "best" class where I ge to do some planning.
Basically, that is a class for the best students in English in 9th
grade, and we don't do anything from the book, so it's free form.
I also work one day a week at the board of education. Those days turn
out to be busy, sometimes I help out with local events, for example we
recently had a town community culture festival, and I helped out with
it, doing set up and tear down.
I also still do English conversation classes for adults twice a month
with Signe at our house, and I have a monthly English conversation class
on the local cable station. That is really fun, and even though my
Japanese is bad (most of the time we are speaking in Japanese to the
audience), I have a great time with it.
I am also still writing a one-page article every month for the town
newsletter. I write that in Japanese and English, so it helps with my
Trev's Japanese Studies
Speaking of language studies, I am trying hard to keep on top of the
CLAIR-sponsered self-study Japanese course. I am doing OK so far, but a
lot of people have already dropped out.
I write in Japanese in my diary everyday as well. That is a great
exercise, and I am really surprising myself by keeping it up. Maybe one
day I will put them online...
I have also been doing some translation work for fun. You can check out
my translations at http://jumex.sdf1.org/trans.html . I am working on
translations for the 5th International Shizuoka Translation contest
(http://www1.sphere.ne.jp/shizuoka/translate/index-e.html ), but I am
not hoping to win anything, it is just fun to be doing some
My birthday (3/2/1977) when over well. I went to a party with a lot of
friends in the evening and during the day I went to an elementary school
and played with the kids. It was great fun.
I want to thank my dad for the WONDERFUL card he gave me for my
birthday, it was very touching and thoughtful. I look forward to seeing
you when I return home in the summer, Dad.
I have bought a scanner with some birthday money and I am going to use
it for various things like making a web page about passing the driving
test in Japan (http://jumex.sdf1.org/drivejp.html ).
My biggest birthday present was passing the Japanese driving test on the
first try the day before my birthday! Signe did too, and we were both
very happy about it. It has been said that 9 out of 10 foreigners that
have to take the Japanese driving test fail their first time out, so it
was great news when we heard that we passed it.
Trev's Anime, Movies, Games, Books, etc.
Well, I subscribe to Newtype every month, but I haven't been watching
too much anime these days. I hope to pick it back up, but I have been so
busy with translating and work that I just let it slip by.
As for movies, we recently got a rental accout at a video store in the
city 30 minutres from us, Miyoshi, so we have been watching a few movies
every week. We also go over to a friend's house once a week for a movie
watching/hanging out party which is always fun.
As for games, I sometimes play on the GameBoy Advance and we jump on the
dance pads to play Dance Dance Revolution 3rd Mix every now and again,
but for the most part, we don't play too many games these days. We will
pick up the cribbage board (http://www.pagat.com/adders/crib6.html )
every now and again though, and often my thought wonder to playing Go,
but I don't follw them.
As for books, we are slowing reading _The Lord of the Rings_ together,
but it is slow-coming, and we don't read everyday.
My piano lessons have petered off, I stopped going because of the snow
(the winter snowfall here was hectic!), but I really haven't had the
willpower lately to run with it again. Maybe sometime in the futre I
will start it up again.
The best news since last report is that we got our computer fixed and it
is back up and running at home now. A big thank you to both my Dad and
Signe's parents for helping us out financially to make that happen. I am
glad that I don't have to check my email at work anymore, since I think
it was becoming extremely counter-productive, although I did do a few
cool things when I was playing around at work. For example, I created a
filter to block the spam mail from coming to me
(http://jumex.sdf1.org/myprocmailrc.cgi ), I get a large ammount of spam
mail each day, so this was very important to me. I also cleaned up my
web pages and converted all the online Trev Reports to HTML using a ksh
(http://www.kornshell.com/ ). I added GeoURL (http://www.geourl.org/ )
tages to my main sites, which allows you to view other web pages that
are physically close to where we are in Japan, very cool.
My most recent successful project was to connect my TV to my computer,
and it is working great now, so we can watch DVDs and movie files from
the computer on the TV. We got a small desk for the computer as well,
which is really a nice touch, since I don't like working on the computer
on the ground. :)
Trev's One Point Japanese Lesson
So you want ot learn a little Japanese, huh? How about the most basic
sample phrases. OK, here we go:
Sore wa nan desu ka? (What is that?)
Kore wa pen desu. (This is a pen.)
Pen ga arimasu ka? (Do you have a pen?)
Hai, arimasu. (Yes, I do.)
OK! Everybody, study hard and have fun. That is about it for this
month's Trev Report. I hope everyone out there is doing well and I wish
you all the best. I always like hearing from you all, so drop me a line
every now and again. Until next time, see ya!