After my initial escapades searching and enrolling at the Driving School, I was able to take the Entrance Ceremony, known as 入学式 (nyugakushiki) in Japanese! Schools in Japan are big on entrance ceremonies, and although it wasn’t quite the grand fanfare I’m used to witnessing at my High School, it was informative and quite the ride! Here’s how it went down.. (I’ll tl;dr at the end for anyone skimming!)
Ufufuf.. hey everyone! It has been a while.. let me share some exciting news!
I decided to learn how to drive .. in Japan! That’s right – I have enrolled in a Japanese driving school, to take lessons and eventually take the test so I can have a full Japanese license. I don’t even own one in my home country, but after 2 years here and being fed up of relying on others to get me around, I thought it was worth taking the challenge and not letting the language barrier put me off.
I’m going to share my experiences of the process and my progress in the hopes that it might be informative for anyone who is interested in taking lessons here too!
A bit of background for my language – I am currently not JLPT certified. I actually failed the N4 in July, by 1 point, haha. But I am decent conversationally, especially if spoken to slowly. I’ve lived here for 2 years, and recently started learning some driving and vehicle related vocab prior to enrolling to help prepare a little.
So – don’t be put off if you aren’t a very high level. I’ll cover some of the language stuff another time.
ああー Twitterを使いますか? 私にフォローお願いします！ 「rebelriotori」です！
(Hey everyone, long time no see!
Are you well? Recently I have been really, really busy but happy every day! This month I took the JLPT N4. This time, I understood most of it so maybe I will pass. So up until this post I have been studying and working hard every day. From now I have more free time! I want to write some interesting posts again.
Oh! Do you use Twitter? Please follow me! I’m rebelriotori.
Righty, I’m going to write a new post! See you!)
I have such exciting news for Japan from my hometown! The Natural History Museum will be exhibiting specimens in Tokyo from the March 18th – June 11th this year!
The Natural History Museum has always had a special place in my heart throughout my life. I’ve lost count of how many times I have visited there, from school trips, attending with my mother to see exhibitions or taking a sketchbook along to draw the fossils. It’s a tourist destination too with many people from across the world visiting the South Kensington area to see the various museums – all for free! Londoners are certainly lucky for the science and arts culture that is available and it really is something I treasured whilst living there.
However now the museum is apparently shipping out a number of fossils and specimens for people in Japan to see too! This is such exciting news for the number of people who are unable to visit London for various reason. I hope many people will go, whether international tourists or residents of Japan.
Much like back home, driving whilst under the influence is a big offence and one which will cost you your career! So, it’s taken very seriously and lots of campaigns have been initiated to remind people not to forget.
My school asked me to create the illustration for their “I’m not drinking!” badges to be used at our major school party. It was such an honour to see lots of people wearing my design! ❤
Yes.. I did indeed fail the JLPT N4 in December.
I’m not going to lie, I did feel a bit gutted because I felt okay in the exam. I mean, I knew I wasn’t going to get a really high grade but part of me figured I’d have a good chance. And I mean, I didn’t get a terribly low fail (my score was similar to when I took the N5 so I mean, I knew stuff..) but it wasn’t enough to pass.
With that minor blow and a new fire in my belly I have decided to start studying harder and with much more structure! So here’s my plan and may my methods be of some help. I’m going to start review what I use as I go along and I intend to re-take the N4 in July.
Let’s see if this works!
Winter is particularly cold in Japan, and although it isn’t much different to the UK it is difficult because you feel it constantly.. The buildings aren’t typically insulated (especially not my jutaku!) and the windows aren’t double-glazed. So whatever the temperature is outside, you can guarantee the inside of my house is about the same!
That’s where “kotatsu” become a joy. Kotatsu are tables which have a heater underneath, and a removable table top which sandwiches a thick, snuggly blanket under it and the table structure to keep the heat in. It is such a pleasure in winter to sit under the kotatsu and keep warm.
Every day, I take the same trains. So, I see the same people waiting for the trains with me. My favourites are the business man, the lady with the stylish boots (and no tights, even in winter!), and the high school student with her adorable pink trainers.
Yukata season will be here again soon! I’m so excited to be able to wear mine again.
I spend a lot of time waiting on train platforms to get to and from work every day. The winter has been especially cold, but it’s always a pleasure to buy a hot drink from the numerous vending machines around!