Amparo Bertram (spacealien_vamp) wrote,
Amparo Bertram
spacealien_vamp

I should have checked the fluoridation level before I left...

Yesterday a school official came to say that he needs to take me to Otsu next week to renew my visa. The vice-principal brought him over to my desk to explain. Now, my vice-principal is a really sweet guy, but he truly cannot get it through his head that I understand Japanese.

VP: Kayoubi. That's Monday...Saturday...

Me: Tuesday.

VP: Yes, Tuesday.

I've been living in this country for nearly four years...you've seen me doing nothing but read Japanese novels for eight hours straight over the past two days...and you think I still don't know the days of the week?!

At least sometimes he gives me credit for knowing the vocabulary and just speaks...really...slowly.

Official: I'll come by to get her at 2:30.

VP: He'll...get you...at...2:30.

Me: ... <tries desperately--and rather unsuccessfully--not to laugh>

Today I went to the "MINNA no Salon" meeting, which was about the one-child-per-household policy in China. (I discovered that MINNA--the Japanese word meaning "everyone"--is supposed to be an acronym for Moriyama International Friendship Association. The Japanese really don't get how acronyms work...but they are certainly creative about it. @_@) The meeting ended with a demonstration of a Chinese martial art style called Taikyokuken. (It looked quite similar to Tai Chi, from what I could tell.)

After that, I went to the dentist for my cleaning. When I was done, the dentist came around. He said he had two questions for me.

Dentist: What is the fluoridation level in Michigan?

Me: ...?

Dentist: Do you know fluoridation?

Me: I know fluoridation...I don't know the level... ^_^;

He seemed kind of surprised by this, for some reason. Yet he accepted it and moved on to his next question.

Dentist: What proportion of elementary school students have orthodontic work done?

Me: ...

You know, when I came over here, I was aware that I would be a cultural ambassador of sorts. But now I realize I just didn't do enough homework.

After I got home, I finally turned on the air conditioner for the first time when I decided the fan simply wasn't cutting it. I checked the temperature, and it seems it was 90° F in my apartment. <whew> No wonder I was sweating...
Tags: culture, school
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