the nikku

reflecting on ESL/EFL and its relation to faith

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

New Friends

This weekend I met more people than I have ever met before in my life.

On Thur night I went to the Japanese class for foreigners at the cultural center. I met the more JETs, the Mormons, a few college students, and the other Kyodan missionary and his wife.

On Fri night A invited me to a uni party for new exchange students and people interested in international stuff. There were over eighty people there. I met about six new people plus a handful I had seen the night before at Japanese class - some were students, some were not.

On Saturday I went to a little place called "Cafe de Lotta". There I met H-chan and her friends. She's a twenty something nurse at a local hospital, and she smokes just like a nurse. She said she really wants to learn English and she has a lot of heart. H-chan told me she lives at "Cafe de Lotta".

On Sun I skipped church and went to a BBQ for the Japanese club. It was pretty fun, but all the groups kind of stratified. Koreans in one place, English speakers another, Philipinos another, and Japanese too. It's still really hard for me to have a social conversation in Japanese, but I'm learned a lot of Japanese this weekend.

That night I was going to go to the rumored "English service church" I'd heard about with the missionary and his wife. I stopped by "Cafe de Lotta" on my way to be picked up, and sure enough, H-chan was there again. We had a coffee and a good chat for a half hour and then I left.

At church that night I met a load of English speakers, most were teachers - from all over the prefecture. One girl had actually seen me at the college party on Friday! The church was VERY evangelistic - almost too evangelistic.

Last night I saw members of the same group at my internet cafe. They say they have a Bible study there every Monday. Weird that I've never seen them there before. They asked if I wanted to join them, but it was 8:20 pm, and they had started at 7pm, so I said maybe later.

Actually, I don't really want to join them. They didn't have any Japanese people with them, not one. A whole table of foreigners - some of whom have lived here for years. And it just would have felt weird to sit at a Bible study table full of foreigners in the middle of downtown. I get the feeling the workers there were saying to themselves, "Oh, that's what white Christians do, they have Bible studies." Which means they say a lot of big words, and it doesn't make any sense, but it sounds cool.

Anyway, more on that later. My second chapel speech is tomorrow, wish me luck!

***

BTW, look at this, and see how the USA has changed in the last one hundred years. Somehow it makes sense how we've sprawled and blown up so much.

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