Tuesday, November 25, 2008

No pictures this time

I have solved the case of the missing host father –and the results are both sad and anti-climatic. I still haven’t seen my host father since that first day – unless you count the three times I’ve seen him through a window. One of those times he casually popped his head into the living room to talk to my host mom and scared the crap out of me. So that’s about three times in at least fifty days. This has gotten around among my friends in JSP and Jen even told her host mom about my strangely absent host father. Theories have abounded –an apartment in Tokyo, he’s a ghost, he works at night. I really didn’t want to pry into my host family’s lives and just straight out ask where the hell my host dad is – but I’ve been getting a lot of peer pressure from my friends.
“Just ask if your host father is busy – very, very busy.” Jen keeps telling me. I couldn’t bring myself to ask my host mom but I did eventually ask my host sister. A few days before this I had asked what divorce was in Japanese because we were watching a Japanese drama that brought up the question, and my host sister casually told me that my host mom and dad might get a divorce. And then she laughed. I didn’t pursue that conversation thread but a few days later (yesterday) my host mom took me and my host sister out for unagi (delicious, delicious unagi) and after dinner when we had come back home my sister mentioned her dad again. I managed to get over my nerves and asked her what kind of job her dad had. She told me she didn’t remember and when I gave her a weird look she told me maybe my host mom wouldn’t know either. I asked her why and she told me my host mom and dad don’t talk to each other, and they don’t eat together, and she doesn’t really meet up with her dad either. Which is sad. But on the plus side my host dad doesn’t avoid only the study abroad students – but his whole family. I guess my host mom might be stuck in a loveless and sad marriage, which is forcing her to work two part time jobs. And maybe she host study abroad students because she gets lonely? Ah well, even if my host family is too busy to really do anything with me they are still really great people.
My host sister and I have started doing Pilates together and we are up to day three. She keeps telling me that she needs to go on a diet even though she’s tiny (and makes her seem pretty similar to my actual sister actually) so we are doing Pilates at night.
Last weekend I didn’t do a whole lot – besides getting drunk trying to catch up to Japanese girls, and then spending the next morning getting real comfortable with floor toilets. I also went to a library that consists solely of books on Japanese literature or Japanese literature itself. Which was interesting – and out of the random copies I made I must now come up with some kind of paper. After the library, in our most unproductive day in Tokyo, my friends and I tried to go to Asakusa but arrived too late. Ah well, better luck next time.
Time is starting to catch up to me and I’m sure the next three weeks are going to be packed with frantic stressful urgency as I try to spend as much time doing fun things with all the great people I’ve met, and also write two papers, do a debate, and write a speech in Japanese based on a survey I hand out. Good, scary times ahead.
Love you all – oh, and I almost forgot (since thanksgiving doesn’t exist in Japan) HAPPY THANKSGIVING. I hope everyone eats a lot of turkey for me. And rolls. And mashed potatoes. And brussel sprouts. And pumpkin pie!! I will be eating curry and drinking beer in the true holiday spirit. More love and holiday wishes. I can’t believe it’s almost December!

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