March 1998 – email1

Starting the month off with a load of stuff. Of course Iaido is in there… seems to be a constant now doesn’t it… : )    Weather stuff. Strange fact about the weather — In CT the exact same weather conditions occured! It was a double or nothing event! What a crazy turn of events ne!  Language and some revelations regading my studying habits etc.. Why my first few months were well spent asking all the questions I asked…. Enough.. read on.  From: Gary Ploski 3/3/98 17:55 Subject: 17:00, mikka, San-gatsu, sen-kyuhyaku-kyuju-hachi-nen. To: EVERYONE IN MY ADDRESS BOOK It’s March 3, 1998, 5:00pm and the annoucement had just told the students to go home. Cautioning them of the cars and trucks. 17:00 is 30 minutes later than it was last week, that means spring is around the corner.  This happens everyday.

        The weather or the past two days has been gorgeous! I wore only the normal outfit to work today, no jacket or gloves. Ahhhhh. Nicely nicely. I can feel the springtime season kicking in, it feels good. I only dare think about the summer after that – YUCKY! I hope it’s not as humid as last year.

        Iaido is going fantastic. I now can do 8 of 10 movements. Next week I will learn 9 and 10, maybe. The next two look to be a challenge. I am so enjoying this — dare I call it a –  sport. It is just an incredible thing to be able to pull the katana out of the scabbard and just go through each motion feeling completely fluid.

        The first time I tried to remove the katana from a scabbard was way back in August ’97. It’s been sometime and I’ve gotten much better. Things get easier with time. I think that correlates to basically anything. I’ve also befriended the group of people involved in the Iaido group, I just can’t figure out the woman in the group – she gives me strange vibes.. zzzwwwwaaaaa bboooooooommmmmnnnnnnnn. = )

        I must admit this has to be one of the better things I’ve gotten involved in here in Asaka/JPN. It was difficult at first because of the language barrier and also my complete unfamiliarity of any martial art. I’ve learned a considerable amount about the culture through Iai. I did something good. Yippee! Yokata!

        Regarding the language thing — I’ve been studying for about 2 or 3 weeks now and I feel as if I haven’t learned much, but I think that goes against what I’ve been experiencing since the first class. I feel a confidence within when I speak to someone. I use my ‘liiiittle’ Japanese and they use their little English. The conversation moves along and I feel as if it was an accomplishment.

        This is a much different kind of feeling from the first half of my stay here. The first was FOCUSED on learning about the societal/cultural ways of life of the Japanese. I believe that to have made my learning of the language much easier. When I learn a new word and hear something I’m unfamiliar with I can hear the base of the word and understand that’s it’s probably a polite way of saying something. Kinda difficult since there are so many ways to say the same word — each a different level of politeness. I’ve begun to understand that, it’s a nice feeling. I lookforward to my future studies in JPN and in the US. It’s alllll good.

        I’ve just typed all of the above in less than 20 minutes. I’m quite impressed with myself, there is quite a bit. how about those typing skills huh? We’ve(refering to April and I because of AOL-IM) both gotten to be quite good at this typing thing. I wonder if I should say that in any interview I have… = )  It’d be a good laugh, and the point would be made. hmmm, have to think about that one. Hmm, anything else?

        I do have to admit that this schedule is FULL, the schedule I’ve got organized presently. I wonder if I’ll have it from now until I leave. I only wonder how exhausted I’ll be…. I will get the happy energy though, as well as sad. It will be tough to leave, that goes without saying I think. So why did I say it? don’t know, maybe cause I could. hehehehe. I feel like I fit in now that I understand more of this Japanese language thing. It’s weird, cool, sad,a and lots of other emotions at the same time.

        Alright as my hands numb, it’s gettin cold – maybe because I have the door open. Duh gar. It feels good though, the fresh air. I’m sick of all this dry air from the heaters in school and in my apartment. Hope everything is going well in all of your lives. Have a crazy day. ciao cito

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