Sunday, August 27, 2006

Job Hunting

Since I have been in Japan, that's longer than 2 months now, I have been hunting for jobs. I think I send me resume to over 50-100 schools now, and have had around 10 interviews since then. Especially last week was a busy week with 5 interviews, and all of them where in Osaka.

So okay, there I am Dave (in a suit) going to interviews where they ask me questions about my career, if I have a Uni. degree, why I can speak English so well while it isn't my first language, and sometimes they even wanted me to do some small lesson for them. I had good and bad interviews, one of the bad interviews was in Kobe on a Sunday evening: I came there in my suit, on my Sunday ( I am not a Christian, but Sunday is Holy to me) and I had this interview with some guy from Seattle, who told me after 1 minute that they don't hire non-natives.... Excuse me? What am I doing here? So I told him that I didn't like it and after 1minute I walked away without saying properly goodbye to everybody.

My good one was probably last week, maybe not a good one but it sure was interesting: Interac is a big company in Japan that sends teachers to Elementary, high schools, and companies. The interview took 1.5 hour, and she asked me a lot of difficult questions on what my good points and bad points are, what would I do if .... and what would I do if ... I had prepared a small lesson plan and she and a co-worker acted as kids of the age of 7-8. After this I needed to do a personality test, grammar test * aaaaaaaaaaa*, Japanese culture test * who is this man on the 10.000yen bill?* and a normal question form about where I live and my background.

She send me an email last week saying that I was not selected, and she told me she would get in contact with me if another position would open up.... and she did :D this morning she gave me a call, and she wants me to come to the training tomorrow, and I can work from next week until March .. Fulltime

It feels good, even though I am doki doki * nervous *, teaching 40 kids at the same time, instead of 6 * what I am used to as a max*.

For me it was maybe less important to get a fulltime job ( part time would give me more time to study) but for Mayuko this was most important in the first months of my stay in here. So yeah it is a relieve for both of us. And now we can spend some more money on .... haha.

I must say that we don't do bad with an income of around 430.000yen a month, and an apartment for 23.000 yen * this will rise up the upcoming year to 50.000 I think*.

I am a happy person, even though it is really difficult so now and then to life here, and I also feel lonely so now and then.

Time is there to learn

Friday, August 18, 2006

Trip to Hiroshima

First of all I want to apologize for being lazy about writing on this blog. To make it up with you people I will tell you about the trip we took to Hiroshima the last couple of days.

We (Mayu and I) took the bus to Hiroshima Tuesday morning on 7.45, and arrived in Hiroshima within 4 hours. ( we choose to take the bus because the shinkansen was total 40.000 yen, the normal JR train 28.000yen, and the bus was only 18.000 yen for a 4 hour drive) The bus ride was okay, we slept talked listened to some music on the Ipod ( top 100 love songs haha).

When we arrived in Hiroshima, we decided to leave our bags at the station, so that we could do some sightseeing before we would go to the hotel. We walked from on the beautiful streets of Hiroshima, where we saw a lot of neon lights, and some nice shops (Hiroshima is not a really big city, and I think visiting it for 1-2 days is enough). We turned left and suddenly we saw almost out of no where the A-Bomb Dome. It looked peace full, but thinking about what have happened on this place 61 years ago made me sad (on August 6th, 1945 when a US B29 bomber 'Enola Gay' dropped the world's first atomic bomb on Hiroshima which eventually killed around 140,000 people and devastated the city). We had walked around the building, and went to the peace park right next to it where we saw the children's monument and the Peace Memorial Museum where we could see pictures, read information , and see video's from the day the bomb fell on Hiroshima. It was impressive and no word I write in here can describe how it made me feel 100%. But one thing is for sure, and that is that when you walk around in this museum, and in the peace park: you will realize what peace is, and you can smile that we are in peace but inside our minds we know that we are in constant danger because there are still so many atomic bombs in the world, and wars going on.

For everyone who is going to Japan, visiting Hiroshima is something what should be highly on your list.

In the evening we went to some building where they had 3 floors of Okonomiyaki restaurants... Hiroshima Okonomiyaki. The food was great, and watching those cooks was even better.

After this we went to the Hotel, because the day was just too hot and we were tired. The hotel wasn't very big, but we had enough space and the place was clean. The hotel stood right next to Hiroshima station so the location was just perfect. We watched some TV, talked about the day , .... , and fell asleep.

On Wednesday we went to Miyajima, and island just 40minutes away from Hiroshima center, and can be reached by ferry. The island it's main attraction is the Itsukushima Shrine with the famous torii. ( Miyajima is on the world heritage list)
Which was the main reason for us to visit this place, and I have to say that it looked beautiful. There were a lot of other temples, and shrines on the island, and especially the ones up Mt misen where amazing. We took the ropeway, and from the station we needed to walk another 30minutes up to the top ( 534meter) we had a great view over the island, and over the whole area from here. When we went down we took some foot bathing in the small river and had a lot of fun in the water. Cooling down was important because it was another hot hot hot day. We had some lunch, looked at the beautiful torii, and went home around 5 after a splendid day at Miyajima.

In the evening we went to some nice Izakaya in the center, and did some Karaoke ( which I didn't like that much because of the sound system at this karaoke center just sucks)

On Thursday we decided to take it easy, and that was needed because we were both broken from the walk up the mountain , and the hot weather from the previous day. We did some shopping, went to some ramen restaurant for lunch, did some karaoke ( again) and bought a present for Eisuke.

We left Hiroshima at 5 pm, and came home at 10. I had some wonderful days, and some great new memories of Hiroshima. Let's never forget what happen in there and enjoy life.

I am looking forward for my further trips the next years to places such as Tokyo, Nara, and maybe Okinawa.

Thanks, and I hope to write something more the upcoming weeks.