Once Upon a Tanbo

April is here

Posted on: April 1, 2008

So its been a little less than a week since I’ve come back from vacation. Yesterday was my first day of work in about two weeks. It wasn’t too great. I found out yesterday that two of my work friends (both Japanese) were quitting as of today to move on to other jobs. They couldn’t tell me because I was gone the last two weeks when they gave their notice. It was a pretty big shock since we all started around the same time last August/September and we used to eat lunch and talk with each other during the down time at work (of which there is plenty..) I didn’t even have time to get them a good bye present. Although, apparently you give presents when you leave? I got some cookies and a little cake from them which was unexpected.

Being back at work I realize that its probably this job which made me so depressed the past months leading up to my vacation. I really like the atmosphere and coworkers, but I feel so unproductive. I have no work at the moment so I spend about 8 hours a day sitting at my desk on the net. I’ve decided that I want to work from home after I’m done with this job and I’m really going to try and get work as a freelance translator. Thankfully I passed the 1kyuu test to so I have some nice written qualifications (completely forgetting most of what I studied though) and my current job will help since at its conclusion, I will have two years of translation/interpretation “experience” under my belt.

Speaking of adding to belts, I’ve gained way more kilos that I’d like to admit in the last couple months and I’m pretty sure that its related to my current job since that’s about the only thing in my lifestyle which has drastically changed in the last 6 months. (Well maybe also starting BCPs… does that cause weight gain? I know my chest has gotten about a cup size and a half bigger…) My previous job was a junior high school teacher, I stood a lot more and walked around during my breaks. I also played with the kids at lunch and occasionally did PE class. Oh well, I purchased my new exercise bike yesterday. I got this model. I’m anxiously awaiting its arrival. I have wanted to have a form of daily exercise for a long time now so I’m hoping this will provide me with a way to release stress after the long work day.

Ryohei has switched to insane study mode. This week the only day he’ll be back from school before 10pm will be Friday. He also has class Saturday night and a practice exam taking place all day on Sunday. (Wow) Starting next month he has his first two real tests.

He’s sending out applications for 国家I種(National Civil Servant Rank 1), 国税(Tax Office), and 国立大学法人(University Office Employee) by the end of this week. (By the way in case you’re keeping track国立大学法人is a new selection for him as of today. He found out Niigata University has slots for about 14 workers in its offices so he figured that he’ll try the test for there as well.) With this new addition the number of tests rises to 8!! I just hope he doesn’t wreck himself in the coming months. He seemed in good spirits today though. (We had lunch together! One of the perks of his school and my work being in the same part of the city.)

One of the good/bad parts of Ryohei’s tests is that he has to do a lot of traveling to take them. Out of his 8 tests, there are only 3 which he can take in Osaka. Three others he will have to take in Niigata and the last two he can choose to take in Tokyo or Niigata. And that’s just for the first round! If he passes he’ll have to go to Niigata or Tokyo again. I’m thinking that for one of them I will join him to go to Tokyo. Since he’s moved here I haven’t had the chance to go back and visit so it may be an opportune time to go when he takes an exam at end of June. Not sure if its possible due to lack of accommodations and money.

Lately I have been feeling so broody. But I can not not not not not not not not consider anything until Ryohei has secured himself a job. And then, I want to be able to fully complete my contract at work for both the experience and the money. So absolutely no entertaining baby Kobayashi possibilities until December this year at the earliest… I think this feeling may just be the spring having its way with me…Going home only kindled the fire, I looked through my old baby book at my baby pictures and my early development (apparently my first word was “cracker”) and wondered how much my future child will take after me, I found some of my old baby clothes and baby blankets that my mom saved for me and I am entertaining the possibility of bring them back with me when Ryohei and I visit in December. Anyways, I really need to stay off the subject until I know a little bit more about the job situation. But I can’t say that its not on the back burner. Stay tuned…

Also its one of my favorite times of year in Japan!!! Sakura season!!! I think they are so so so beautiful! I love the 2 weeks or so that they are out. This is my 3rd spring in Japan and I plan to do hanami sometime soon. I was invited by a friend for this Sunday but the forcasts say rain so I’m not sure what to do. I think that this weekend will be the best viewing time for the Kansai area so it feels like now or never for a good old hanami party.

After being on vacation for two weeks I thought I would feel satiated, but my life still feels so predictable and boring. With my vacation over, I don’t really have anything to look forward to until we go up to the in-laws for Obon in August.

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7 Responses to "April is here"

I hear you about the boring job and DH’s insane hours! I am an AET at a junior high right now (though my job position is NT, meaning I’m supposed to be teaching my own classes- which I did for seven years at a private jhs here so this job has been such a disappointment and soooo boring (and a bit of a blow to the ego- AETs are a bit like Dancing monkeys I find). Anyways, I have to go in during spring vacation with nothing to do. I wish I would write a great novel instead of wasting all my free time at work on the net.
Enjoy your hanamis! Ours won’t be til mid-April but the plum blossoms have started, yay!
Oh that’s exciting that you are thinking about babies in the near future! (December will be here before you know it!)

With all the effort Ryohei is putting into his study, he should do fantastically on his exams!!

Naoki and I have been talking about starting for a family soon. Then I found out I was going to be a bridesmaid for my sister’s wedding in April (which ruined that plan!), now they have put off their wedding for a long while, so maybe I will be joining you in the pregnancy boat around December!! Depends on our finances too though.. we want to have everything for the house first(because we need to buy a fridge, washing machine, bed, oven etc etc)and have at least some savings in our bank before we start!

Just a question, are you planning on being a SAHM or go back to work?

Enjoy the sakara season!! I am so jealous lol. Make sure you take lots of picture and post them on your blog!

Christelle – Ouch.. I really hated going in during spring break.. nothing to do but just sit. Hope that you find something to do! Maybe work on your “novel” during that time =D

Fukushima doesn’t get sakura until mid-April?? Wow? But I guess its good in a way because it should be warmer, and hanami would be much more enjoyable. The weather here is pretty dissmal right now which probably isn’t helping my mood!!

You’re right December will be here soon! Of course, we wouldn’t try to have a baby unless Ryohei had a job lined up, so there a lot riding on his tests!! I’m looking forward to hearing your stories soon enough!!

Nay – Thanks for the encouragement!! I tell Ryohei that people on my blogs are rooting for him and he gives me a look like.. huh?

If Ryohei passes his test this summer, he’ll start working next April and we’d like to have our first sometime within that year. Probably most the money we’ll be using is the money that I am saving from my job right now which is why it is of high importance to complete my contract. But, if Ryohei gets the job he will be getting a decent salary as well as help on housing etc.. plus (very likely) this will be the first grand child/great grandchild for both of our families so we figure we’ll get some help there.

I can’t really see myself going back to work outside the house for a while, we’d like to have all of our kids within a few years of each other but I think once the youngest started Japanese preschool I would probably look to do some sort of outside work. However, ideally even when I have small children I’d like to make some side money doing freelance translation from home. I know some of our fellow blogging friends do that, so I may have to press them for info later.

Christelle – Ouch.. I really hated going in during spring break.. nothing to do but just sit. Hope that you find something to do! Maybe work on your “novel” during that time =D

Fukushima doesn’t get sakura until mid-April?? Wow? But I guess its good in a way because it should be warmer, and hanami would be much more enjoyable. The weather here is pretty dissmal right now which probably isn’t helping my mood!!

You’re right December will be here soon! Of course, we wouldn’t try to have a baby unless Ryohei had a job lined up, so there a lot riding on his tests!! I’m looking forward to hearing your stories soon enough!!

Nay – Thanks for the encouragement!! I tell Ryohei that people on my blogs are rooting for him and he gives me a look like.. huh?

If Ryohei passes his test this summer, he’ll start working next April and we’d like to have our first sometime within that year. Probably most the money we’ll be using is the money that I am saving from my job right now which is why it is of high importance to complete my contract. But, if Ryohei gets the job he will be getting a decent salary as well as help on housing etc.. plus (very likely) this will be the first grand child/great grandchild for both of our families so we figure we’ll get some help there.

I can’t really see myself going back to work outside the house for a while, we’d like to have all of our kids within a few years of each other but I think once the youngest started Japanese preschool I would probably look to do some sort of outside work. However, ideally even when I have small children I’d like to make some side money doing freelance translation from home. I know some of our fellow blogging friends do that, so I may have to press them for info later.

Firstly BCP`S can definitely make you put on weight! The weight I have put on since been back in Japan is not from BCP`s but when I went on them when I was about 15 I put on about 5 kilos in six months even though nothing in my life changed except that!

I would love a job where I could use the internet at work! hehe! But I am an internet junkie…Plus I think if I had nothing to do at work I would be dead bored.

Talking about what Nay said about been a SAHM…I am with you and would like to until to the youngest went to kindy…But I am not sure it would be possible…since living in Tokyo and surrounds is so expensive and I doubt we could live on just Shun`s salary! Maybe if I was doing some proofreading or writing from home. I have been approached to do content writing on some other sites before but so far have never followed it up! My japanese skills are not good enough to do translating but I have experience doing proofreading etc…

You might come to Tokyo in June? I will be already gone! Zannen! It is a shame because our place is big enough that you and Ryohei could of crashed here if we were still here! I don`t think we are going to get a chance to meet before I go back to Australia maybe?!? Sounds like by the time I do meet you that you migth already be pregnant!!!!

I can`t beleive you and Nay are thinking of starting familes so soon. I am so not ready. I want kids, one or two maybe, but the idea of having them now scares the shit out of me. I guess I have a fair bit going on now with going back to Australia etc etc but we have talked about it and we might start trying near the end of 2010 but it depends on work, money and my fathers health…

the good thing about you and Nay trying for babies sooner though is that I will be able to harrass/ask you for details and advice!!!

I have a question for both you and Nay. Will you give birth here? Or would you go home to do it?

I hope work improves! Maybe you could start writing a novel? Or doing some extra translation work on the side????

Lulu – Thanks for the long comment! 長ければ長いほど好きだよ!

You are shooting for 1kyuu in the next couple years right? If so you will most likely be able to find some sort of translation work if you look for it, proofing from home is also probably a viable option for you. I have an aquitance who is a native Japanese but does Japanese -> English translation and she said that usually you start out proofing and then move up to getting your own translations. She was very interesting to talk to, I plan to get some more tips from her which I can pass along to you if interested!! My mom stayed at home with my brothers and I until we went to school so I’d like to do the same as well! I also want my children to learn English so probably being in the house with them when they are young will help with that. Actually, like you, I think I will have to work some to keep us afloat for the first few years… we’ll play it be ear though. A lot of this depends on where/when Ryohei gets hired.

As for giving birth, as much as I would prefer to do it back in America I don’t think thats going to be an option.. at least with my first. To be honest, I’d be really interested in trying to do a homebirth or waterbirth but not sure how I would go about doing that here. So I’ll probably research some clinics and choose which one I think will suit us best. If we end up in Niigata City there are two that I am interested in (yes I have already researched) but we may end up somewhere completely different.. so we will see.

Actually its funny you meantioned doing extra translation… I was approched with the idea of doing some fan translations. I need to look at the material but I may pick it up as a hobby, and I’m sure it can’t hurt to have on my resume as well.

Let me tell you one thing, the holding off your own kids seems to get harder and harder if you are in proximity of friends with them, so I imagine if Nay and I have babies and you see us quite a bit you’ll get quite clucky yourself.

I think Nay will be first though! hehe..

I am in agreeance with both you and Lulu regarding being a SAHM. I am aiming to be a SAHM mum until at least my last child starts youchen. We are aiming for 4 children though – so I’m not sure if Naoki’s income will be enough.

I thought about coming back to Australia to give birth (especially with the baby bonus going up to $5000 this June. Did you know that Lulu??), but I just don’t think it will be possible. For starters, I want (MOST DEFINITELY) for Naoki to be next to me, giving me support. Secondly, you can’t travel once your a certain stage in your pregnancy, which means I would have to come home way earlier(and you know what I’m like with seperation issues! lol). The only thing that scares me is that alot of Japanese hospitals don’t give any drugs – and I really can’t imagine myself getting through that without at least something to numb the pain! But some hospitals do give drugs, so I will be doing a lot of reseach when it gets closer!

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