Thank-you Letter From The Principal


Nawwwww after writing my principal a thank-you letter for supporting me last week during my self introduction in front of all the principals in Kobe.

I came to school this morning to find he had written an article expressing how impressed he was with me in the weekly staff newsletter.

All day the other teachers have been telling me how surprised they are I learned to read and write (to be honest I’m still terrible). Feeling fair good about life today (*^^*)

I typed up copy below and provided liberal translations.

◇ 先日ALT紹介と,勤務説明会がありました。

At a briefing for work the other day, the ALT’s introduced themselves.
Daniel spoke his self introduction firmly in Japanese.


(Quoting some of my speech)
「I am Daniel from (my schools name) JHS, the food I love is mochi. Yatsuhashi (a specialty from Kyoto) is the most delicious’」


It was well received by the other Principals there.


Also the next day, on my table in the principals office, Daniel placed a letter and some chocolate (Terry’s chocolate orange in fact *^^*). His kind actions made me very happy.


He is a very good friend of mine!

Here is a copy of the letter I have him.

What Time Is It? Adventure Time!


I have noticed these air temperature graphs present in every school and government building I’ve been inside in Kobe, I can’t help but only see Fin the Human from Adventure Time in them every day whenever I glance one in the 職員室 (Staff Room).



Seasons Change Fast in Japan


Now the Japanese tend to like to make a big deal about how the Japanese archipelago has 4 distinct seasons, almost as if they seriously believe that this is an attribute unique to their country (to be honest though the day I do come across someone who beloved this I shan’t be surprised).

Anyhow what I want to talk about today is just how rapidly these very distinct seasons suddenly come about. Having been living in Japan for what is coming up on a year now I have seen each if the 4 seasons come about.
When winter arrived it was more or less a slap in the face to the unprepared Australian, it wasn’t that it was just unbaringly cold for someone who had never seen snow before but more so its rapid onset.


Thank god winter is behind us for another 9 months but what I’m really amazed with is just how fast it seemed to disappear. Above is the weather forecast for Kobe this week, strangely quite comfortable, the odd thing is that 2 weeks ago the average was little more than 0-4 degrees. That’s an average jump of 10 whole degrees in 2 weeks! It’s like there are little men in the clouds who be like ‘oh shit son Feburary is over, switch out the snow and fill up the weather bukake machine with Sakura!’.
Anyone else from other parts of the world experience seasons changing so abruptly? Back home in Melbourne we don’t really have well defined seasons, they all kinda bleed into eachother on top of that you can have freezing days in hummer and warm ones in winter…..

Anyhow things are looking up in my little corner of the world. I leave you with imminent Ned….. On vacation it seems.


JET Program 2013-2014 Recontracting!


As of today it’s all official, I have past the recontracting interview, received all the paperwork and I will be here in Kobe for at least another 16 month (though to be honest probably a lot longer)!!! Here in Kobe it’s not such a big deal to stay here a long time, all you gotta pretty much do is be good at your job and an integral part of the JET community.
It seems insane that almost a year has passed since I arrived here in Japan and I have come a long long way!

Also I’ma take this opportunity to apologize for the reduced postings this year, I have recently begun taking my 日本語 study a lot more seriously which has been chewing up a lot of the free time I was previously putting towards this blog, alongside that its winter, unless you guys are interested in my tales of playing ps3 n eating nabe not that much has been going on. That said hang tight, nihonomnom is in no way dead! A dream of spring is coming!

I leave you with a picture I drew whilst bored at my desk, takoichigodaifuku たこ苺大福 the smallfolk of the imaginary kingdom of Takotopia. A grand realm which exists only in the confines of my head XD


Happy Singles Awareness Day!


So let me set the scene for you, JTE taps me on the shoulder as I’m sitting at my desk today.

JTE: Daniel do you know the word sa-bi-shii???
Tako: (Reluctantly) ……yes
{hands me a cookie}
JTE: I make cookie for my son because I think he looks like you. No girl give him present.
Tako: errrrrrr thankyou.
JTE: Please next year get girlfriend or I make you more cookie, 頑張って!



Valentines day is not a pleasant holiday for singles anywhere in the world, but its particularity enduring with the Japanese brand of the holiday.


To those uninitiated, in Japan it is only the women who give the gifts on this day however which fall into one of three categories:
Giri choco 義理チョコ (lit. obligatory chocolate).
Honmei choco 本命チョコ (chocolate given to a man out of genuine sentiment).
Tomo choco 友チョコ (chocolate given to a woman’s female friends).

Oh but don’t start thinking this is all a sexist one sides affair, oh no!
In the 80s department stores ‘created’ a new holiday one month after V day which they named ‘White Day’. The purpose of which was to give men who received gifts on Valentines the opportunity to reciprocate the sentiment(Read: sell more chocolate), which they must do at 3 times the amount they received!


Five and Twenty – A Man Grown


Yesterday my years amounted to the well rounded number of five and twenty, which called for some none to hectic celebrations after school.

I returned home after a great day and a belly full of beer n sushi, pondering the how my position has changed since I blew out the candles this time last year. I remember thinking to myself at that moment ‘my 24th year will be the best of my life’ in retrospect I was right on the money.

Its crazy how much we can grow within a span of only 12 months. Looking at the reflection of the man I once was I now see what I was running from, a miserable relationship, an unfulfilling job. What I found in my escape from reality was a new home amongst people who care about me in Kobe. Furthermore my eyes have been opened to the importance of the love and support from a family I left half a world away.

To those who made my five and twentieth name day as delicious as a humble Tako could wish for, you have my gratitude and of corse in addition I thank thee all for your kind birthday wishes ♥



On a lighter note thank you lady Barbie for ‘Sparkles the Dolphin’ which I proceeded to sexually assault/ride free willy style the entire evening.