Of course my car battery is dead so I had to walk to the post office today in this crazy weather. I have one of those umbrellas made for wind and it is very handy. Today it met its match. I thought that any minute I was going to catch air and go off flying like Mary Poppins. Hubby needed me to mail him things ASAP so I couldn't put off the walk. He is lucky I love him so much. :)
Today I went on a field trip with Brother's class to a Japanese driving school. Who knew a driving school could be so entertaining? It starts off in a classroom and a man in a suit goes up front and starts speaking to us in Japanese. He starts off with "Ohayou gozaimasu!" (prounounced o-hi-yo go-zi-mas)- meaning good morning. The children understand and return his greeting. After that most of us are lost because he continues on in Japanese. We all just smile and nod- or in the case of some of the children- stare at him with a blank face. In spite of the language barrier we all enjoyed it. The local police are there to teach the children about bicycle safety and the rules of the road so to speak. Except the "rules" are referred to as "promises" and traffic violations are called "traffic violence". I think the kids knew what they meant? The good thing is that the Japanese are all too ready to laugh when they mess up. I think it is out of nervousness or embarassment- but it really difuses the situation. One police officer who only knew enough English to tell us that he does not speak English had no trouble explaining traffic lights and how to perform a safety check on a bicycle. In fact he is quite entertaining and there are many smiles and laughter.
Down one flight (we were on the third floor), we all gathered in front of the large window to watch a demonstration with a dummy and a bus. At one point the bus hits the dummy (who was standing waaay to close to the bus when it was trying to turn). The children thought that was very hilarious.
The best part of the trip- in my opinion- was lunch. They served us bento boxes for lunch. They weren't the pretty laquered bento boxes but rather plastic take out style bento boxes with a lid- including chopsticks and the cutest little bottle of soy sauce. Brother LOVED the food. We didn't know what half of it was, but it was good I have to agree. Bento boxes are the BOMB. We had fried chicken, salmon on rice, some kind of yummy egg custard, a mini hotdog, some kind of yellow crunchy pickled cucumber, a salted plum on top of rice, flaky fishy stuff on rice and then there was the weird kind of jelly that smelled like ramen? I didn't eat all of that one. There were a couple of other foods included that I don't know how to begin to describe except to say they were good.
Did I mention that Brother LOVED it?
As we left the employees all came out and waved goodbye. The followed us outside when we boarded the buses and waved goodbye to us once more. I wish I had a picture of that.
After all the talk about wheel differential- we almost hit a truck trying to make a right turn (remember we drive on the left side here). Somehow the bus and truck driver managed to squeak by with maybe an inch between them. I would have been surprised had I not seen this before.