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Nishi Chu

Today I went back to Nishi Chu, went back to Gunma, for the first time since I left. I spent about 2 hours getting to Gunma, and about 3 hours in Gunma (lol).

Nishi Chu was a case of me really liking where I worked and not really liking where I lived. The friends I made were all like 35-70yr olds...It was the first time I interacted with that many, and I didn't really know how to keep up the friendships.

I really loved teaching (most all of) the kids and I was so heartbroken when I found out that I couldn't attend the graduation ceremony tomorrow. Originally, I had just wanted to see the ceremony and be creepy, sit with the parents and then creep up from out of a corner, say "Congratulations!" and then slink away, but my plan failed when I realized I already booked a plane ticket for that day }:

Instead, I contacted my friend, math teacher, and she asked the principal when would be a time to possibly say hi and he said 11:45, right when lunch starts, and to go directly to the classrooms. I woke up at 7:30, grabbed a small poster I drew for them, and departed for Gunma. Got there around 10:30, walked over to Coco's family restaurant, basked in its mediocrity (it was the restaurant closest to my house, I had gone there a lot. Even though it's pretty so-so), and then headed over. 

When I approached the school I was seen by several kids and I heard, "AH! AREKUSU! AREKUSU DA!" I was almost in tears already at that point! Some kids were running around peeking their heads around corners and giggling. It was just like when I taught there. They yelled, "Pleased to meet you!!" It was the cutest thing ever. Most people just yelled, "I saw you on TV! (in Japanese, they could totally manage that sentence in English tho)" Apparently a good portion of my school watches Zip! and when I was on it was a school-wide topic. I don't think many kids remembered what I told them I was doing and so they just think I'm in Tokyo, randomly appearing on TV and that's my thing now ^^; I was seriously crying. Some kids didn't really understand why I came back and probably thought I was being weird, but I didn't really care that much. 

The weird thing is that I tried to wait out some time in the faculty room, because I had bonded with some teachers and kind of wanted to talk to them, but I was led out by math teacher who said that if I went into the faculty room and started talking with the faculty then the guy who took over my job would feel really bad (the principal apparently felt that). Apparently that guy didn't really bond with the kids, or the faculty, and just read books in the faculty room all day. So he wasn't getting the job back next year D: 

But I really don't think me being around for one second would have hurt a grown man's feelings....
I'm just sad I didn't get to talk with everyone for longer....



My 32 page manga was completed yesterday. The pic below is the climax scene. And with that I enter into a month long break. Actually, it's a bit more than a month. And I have almost zero structured activities planned.

I have no job bc Waseda Academy is also taking a 2-month break, so I'm left in the horrible predicament of no job and no money. To make things worse I got the bill for my school fees....And it is a big bill. I can pay it, but once I do I'll just have enough to feed myself and pay the rent for a month.

But I'm also going to the Philippines...I'm praying that Shoushi brings me to cheap places and that we can stay at his friend's place. I already have the expensive part (the ticket). But I need to also shell out Almind's pet hotel cost...

Oh yeah, and the guy I was interested in made it really clear to me that he does not feel the same way. Luckily he did this while I am sleep-deprived and working on this manga, so I couldn't focus on it as much as I could if he did it to me now...but still }:

WTF man, you were totally leading me on. Never invite a girl out on Vday who you "just wanna be friends with" again. /endrant

I also need to muster-up the courage to call editors to show this manga to...I'm just so afraid of them tearing me up (; n ;)

Scathing Critique of American Culture

Through Japanese cram school practice tests.
(I work part-time at a cram school)

Question (translated by yours truly): Would an American high-schooler understand this dialogue?

A: I've used this folding fan for 20 yrs! Do you want to know how? By unfolding one half, using that for 10 yrs, then unfolding the other half and using that!

B: Oh! That's pretty smart, but I have a way to use one fan my whole life!

A: How is that possible??

B: By moving my head instead of the fan! (moves head up and down instead of waving the fan).

Answer: Overwhelmingly "No." First of all Americans only use air conditioners to cool themselves. They wouldn't understand what a folding fan is because they probably have never seen one. Secondly Americans throw away everything. They are a consumer society that wastes everything, so they would not understand "mottanai." (Japanese for " a waste, a pity.") Americans would think, "Why don't they just buy new folding fans?"

The answers are a composite of my high school students. I was pretty surprised. I guess I understand it but it also made me curious about perceptions of America. What do they think we used 100 years ago...?

In other news I am SHERLOCKED....


Just realized today that in less than a month I'll be 25. Urgh. I still have the heart of a 13-yr old tho...D; Not the best either.

Just came back from India and took 500 pictures (literally) So I thought I'd spam you with some

What most India looks like:


What hotel we stayed in (actually was a palace!):

What Indian food looks like (Northern)

What elephant rides look like (not comfortable)

What I enjoyed the most, RUINS AND OLD BUILDINGS! (of course spending time with my family was no.#1)


Girly Girly

I'm getting tired working on this comic. So nervous thinking about what the end product will look like. Covers come on Friday! D; 

We have a new assignment for digital work class that I kinda am excited about. We're making a space inside a cube. I decided to do a room.

When I was a little girl my dream was to have an extremely girly room. I was a real big girly girl in elementary school. I think it's funny bc I am really not that way now. The only girly stuff I still like is weird stuffed animals, like my pink llamas and Nyanpire (a cat vampire character that's adorable).

Anyway, this is the room. It has a lot of cake and sweets in it bc I am in the middle of dealing with 5 billion cavities (apparently) and I decided to take my anger out about that by throwing the sweets in the pic (better than in my mouth)


I need to brainstorm a sickeningly girly wallpaper... 


I'm angry about how slowly I am working. I think it'll be fine, but I'm not in the best mood. 

Today there was a guy handing out flyers for a free rakugo performance. I thought, "Hmm, it's free. Why not take a look?" and took a flyer.

The guy immediately noticed I was not Japanese when I passed him and took the flyer,  he yelled after me, "HELLO! Nice to meet you! You're beautiful sexy baby!" 

Then I crumpled up the flyer and thought, "To hell with rakugo."

God, why do I hate it so much when people scream English at me?!?

(I think it might be linked to how much I hate people hollering at me in general.)



Is something I find myself thinking about often these days.....I was told 2 weeks ago by my school counselor that, starting next month, I should research jobs in Japan and try to go to info sessions and start what many Japanese call, "就職活動." It's a scary Japanese way of looking for a job before you graduate school.

Once you graduate from school you are apparently as attractive to a Japanese company as a deformed burn-victim who got shat on by a pack of wild dogs....SO before I become that I need to start looking for a real job.

IF I want to stay in Japan, that is.

That's the dilemma I'm dealing with. Do I want to stay here? Entering the Japanese white-collar world terrifies me, does it terrify me enough to leave? I'm not sure. I'm really not sure...I am so not sure that that also frightens me.

If I go back to America what would I do? I wish ghosts would fly over from the cemetery across the street and show me my possible futures, but something tells me that Japanese ghosts have probably not seen "A Christmas Carol." Which really sucks bc I have always loved Dickens and especially the Muppet adaption of that story!!

What was I talking about again? OH YEAH....THE FUTURE.

In the future I may be done with this manga I'm drawing now for Comitia.


CHECK IT OUT (The gallery changed/eliminated so many things that I sent that I was a bit pissed at first...but I'm semi over it!! Kinda!)

Gallery Opening?!

So today I got an email with this in it. My school's art gallery is having an exhibition on manga and anime culture and that's a scene from my manga I drew two months ago!!


The news gets bigger bc I didn't know it, but apparently they want me to display my work in the gallery as well! Unfortunately the reception for the show is October 15th and I didn't know about this bc of communication issues (mainly that one curator said nothing to me about this)...So I have to complete six 20"x15" pieces and FedEx them to the US so that they can get there by then. Meaning that my free day tomorrow is going to be a day of me brainstorming/buying supplies/ and not sleeping again.

This also means that I will be shown in a gallery <3 My parents said they will force my brother and Lan to go to it and take pictures :D
Seems like September is trying to run away from me OTL

I'm so busy always.

I now have a new job at a cram school. I correct sentences kids translate from Japanese. It's hard sometimes because I correct based on my intuition...So when a kid comes up to me and is like, "Why is this wrong?" I have to look again carefully to analyze it. It's hard when the reason is that the kid is grammactically correct but is just phrasing things really awkwardly. The kids LOVE starting sentences with "as."

I don't get it.

I finished my 24 pages of copying manga last week and I got an "A" GUSHING ABOUT IT (this teacher is hard to please).


aND i finished this stupid B4 sized crow! I drew it with a marupen for about 5 hrs?

And I finally toned this! I don't know what to do for the background.... It's supposed to be night but I don't wanna make it all black }:?


So school starts on Thursday and I am still only like halfway done with my homework. I am freaking out and wondering why I could lounge around for a month. It's incredible. When I go back to the US I become so incredibly lazy but when I'm in Japan I'm in constant panic-mode.



One of our summer assignments was to draw 15 characters on a B4 size paper based on simple descriptions....
Example: One chef, one wizard, one doctor...etc.

I got all ambitious and started doing a picture, with a semi-story, IN COLOR.

I think this is what you would call masochism. It's due on Friday.Hahahahah

You can see that there are less than 15 characters in this picture OTL

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