I don’t want to sound like a bore, but I was wondering if you would be interested in hearing about my recent work/life updates:
1. The splintering (or should that be “balkinization?”) of JJ’s continues ever further, with four distinct factions forming, which are keeping me very, very busy, swallowing up two weekday mornings and all of my weekends, on top of my regular schedule. They are a dynamic crowd, and I’m being tugged in all directions; I’ve honestly never been this popular in my life! I’d like to flatter myself that my esteemed customers are genuinely attracted to my dazzling wit and sparkling personality, not to mention my prized hankie collection, but sadly I have to admit that they are only using me to get back at each other (as evidenced by the fact that they are always trying to pick information out of me about what the “others” are doing, and then ostentatiously one-upping them). Wow. I thought I left all this shit behind me in high school … except I was never this popular in high school. And neither were my hankies.
2. Junko, my former partner, is in hiding and refusing to come out and talk to anyone except me. Her nose is seriously out of joint! I hope she fixes it soon. Last week her best friend called me all concerned, and told me that Junko has not shown up at the gym/neighbourhood coffee klatches for several weeks, and is not returning any phone calls or emails. I told her to give it some time, and mumbled something about a sick grandmother (yes, they use that excuse in Japan too). I’m not getting involved in this shit! Like I said, I left it all behind in high school … shame they didn’t.
3. The mums-and-babes group finally starts next Thursday, on an irregular basis. Junko will secretly join us (well, we are the only JJs who haven’t pissed her off) and I’m now brushing up on my nursery rhymes and dusting off my old story books. I’m really eager to work with little kids again! So much less complicated than adults. And far smarter, too.
4. I broke another door at the cram school, and I feel terrible about it. The kids are really understanding, and the bosses are pretending to be so. (Will post more about this situation later.)
5. Ten days ago one of my best friends left her husband and two children and ran off to Thailand. Now she emails me daily asking about them. And that’s all I’m going to say about that.
6. I’ve started tutoring a group of Korean kids in a working-class district of Osaka every Wednesday evening. I do it partly out of guilt, but mainly because I genuinely like them and their parents. (The history of Korean immigrants to Japan is a long, sad and tumultous one, and I’ll be sure to post about it some day.)
7. Some of my private students have told me that I’m overdoing it and becoming a workaholic. Hah! This from Japanese people?
8. This morning Ben woke up, yawned, scratched, and ignored me for the rest of the day.
9. Ditto Sonbeam. As with every day. Some things never change, and that’s a blessing.
10. My 25 ladies are as wise, wonderful and beautiful as ever. I don’t know where I’d be without them. Or without you guys, for that matter.
And that’s it for now. I’ll post more when something interesting happens.