Ode to chopsticks
I'm out of chopsticks! For several weeks now I no longer have chopsticks at home, forcing me to eat things like spaghetti, noodles and chicken with a knife and fork. It's so annoying. I want my chopsticks back. I'm more used to chopsticks than any other thing.
Thanks to the convenience of Japan I never really need anything other than chopsticks or a spoon to eat my food. If you buy food or cook it at home it seldom happens that you need a knife to cut things on your plate. Chopsticks are good. I wish more countries would use them.
Pushing the envelope
Do you sometimes have the feeling that you're biting off more than you can chew? I have, recently. Planning trip after trip, being dead busy at work, having 110% of fun outside of work, it leaves me with little time to truly relax. Which is not that bad, since it forces me to keep on improving myself.
I'm planning two trips in the near future. One is a trip to Australia. Let me rephrase that: one is a wicked crazy trip to a country at the other side of the world where I will be doing stuff I have never done before, exploring places I never thought I would go in my life. Good. The second is 'just' a cycling trip in Shikoku. I have done cycling in Japan before. It was great. The second cycling trip will be a familiar feeling for me, and I have confidence in doing something I did once before, because the second time I can do it better! The Australia trip will let me experience many new things, and the cycling trip will let me become better at what I know already. It's win-win!
Don't you just love moments when suddenly everything clicks into place? When something you previously could never even hope to understand suddenly makes complete sense? I haven't had one of these moments in a very long time. But today, during language exchange, Chinese suddenly made a whole world of sense to me. My level is still at that of an absolute beginner, and I have serious trouble remembering the words, but my pronunciation keeps on improving (albeit very slowly), and my comprehension of the basics suddenly jumped up a notch today. When looking at a conversation in my study book, I suddenly realized that I knew the meaning of one word, and then another, and then another, and then I realized how the grammar of the sentence was formed, and then I realized how the grammar of the other sentences was formed. It was a true 'eureka' moment, and it gave me the confidence that some day I might actually be able to understand Chinese.