about to end my fourth month here, i sometimes still get called Eric, the name of my predecessor at this job, by my students. once this happens, it isn't long before the teachers get confused and call me Eric too. i really don't make an effort to remember anyone's name, becuase there are too many students and faculty, plus i am terrible with names in the first place. but this makes it extra disheartening when i get asked again if i am going to stay on for another year and i say no, because i miss my girlfriend, and because i am homesick. "are you enjoying japanese life?" i guess so, but probably not enough. maybe there is a job in america waiting for me where i will be called some version of my birth name, where i will spend less than 75% of the time sitting at my desk entertaining myself (but hopefully not much less than that). there is also most likely a very interesting piece that has already been written by a dozen people i have never heard of called "english education in japan is a poorly worded, agrammatical joke that makes no sense" which i could rewrite in my sleep, but i wouldn't ever bother to. mayuko did get a 100 on her english exam though, so that made me feel okay. today is tuesday, and i do not have english conversation group (four women chatting in japanese, me talking about my life in english), so i get to relax and finish watching the season finale of curb. being so well paid to do so little here must be doing something bad to my sense of self-worth, to my overall value as a person, but i won't be able to tell until after i'm done here. i do get to watch sumo tournaments, which last 15 days and are awesome. also, i am thinking that i probably broke or bruised one or more bones in my left foot, because wednesday will be two weeks since i hurt it at karate, and it still is not near 100%. i can almost walk, and not quite climb or descend the stairs properly. it is just messed up. hopefully it will be fine again in 3 weeks when liz gets here.
the sense of disappointment that i got from saying i would only stay 1 year is the same as the guilt i was made to feel when i told a woman at my conversation group that liz and i are going to osaka and maybe kobe. nowhere else? that's it? why not kyoto? because, that's why.