"a caterpillar doesn't just grow into a butterfly. a caterpillar must undergo metamorphosis, and a cocoon is where a caterpillar risks it all: enters total chaos, undergoes total rebuilding, and is born to a new way of living. only in taking the risk of entering that inert cocoon can the caterpillar go from dormancy to potency, from ugliness to beauty."

Saturday, February 15, 2014

bus ride

Never say, "oops." 
Always say, "Ah, interesting."
-- Author Unknown

12th of february 2014: on board keifuku bus (京福バス) #12
my 3rd bus ride in fukui city

on a daily basis, i either walk or use my bicycle to get to the places where i need to be here in fukui city -- even if reaching my destination means i have to walk for twenty to thirty minutes or more, rain or shine, with snow on the road or without. i rarely need to ride the bus or the train and taking the taxi is not an attractive option. if the bus rates start at 200 yen (it's just 100 yen though for the limited routes of the community bus), taxi flagdown rates start at 650 yen (note: 1 yen is equivalent to ~0.45 philippine pesos. so, do the math and spell expensive). 

last month, when i needed to reach fukui station with my travel bags, i did myself a favor and studied the fukui city bus and train routes plus time-and-fare-tables. fukui city public transport timetables are available online and offline but they are published in japanese and mostly kanji. however, if one is familiar with the kanji characters for the departure and arrival points along a public ride's route, the system is very easy to follow and nobody gets lost in translation (or frustration? :P)!

by the end of my first public bus ride in the city, i was impressed with the reliability and efficiency of the system!!! i could have been equally impressed with myself, too, except that i committed a booboo just before i alighted the bus: i inserted my fare into the wrong coin slot :D lelz. i let out an involuntary "hala?" and my face went @.@ when i saw my two 100-yen coins being ejected in rapid succession by the machine as twenty 10-yen coins. the driver said, "ここ (koko)" and pointed to another slot. with a sheepish smile and a "ごめんなさい (gomennasai)" followed by a quick "ありがとう (arigatou)," i collected all twenty 10-yen coins and dropped them into the right slot. 

since i learned from that experience, everything went well with my 3rd bus ride in the city. ^_^ 

koko means here. gomennasai means sorry. arigatou means thank you.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

kiddie art for my nihongo class

"All cartoon characters and fables must be exaggeration, caricatures. 
It is the very nature of fantasy and fable." 
--Walt Disney

on the 16th day of january 2014, our sensei introduced us to some imaginary animals (そうぞうのどうぶつ; souzou no doubutsu) in japanese stories. since mermaids and something similar to the abominable snowman were included in the そうぞうのどうぶつ sheets that she distributed, i decided to write about the manananggal when she asked us students to draw and write about imaginary animals in our respective countries.

this is the work that i shared to my sensei and classmates after about fifteen minutes of thinking, drawing, and writing...

impromptu drawing-and-writing activity output
this photo shows that i can still draw and write like a kid. :) hahahaha.

this is the rough translation of what i wrote:
"this imaginary creature lives in the village. in the morning, it's human.
in the evening, its body is cut in half.
the upper part of the body has wings. the wings are large and black.
this imaginary creature is called aswang. another name for it is manananggal.
this imaginary creature is bad. the eyes, teeth, and face are very scary.
the aswang likes various types of people. and, (the aswang) eats them."

i wanted to mention blood and exposed veins and internal organs but, until now, i don't know yet the nihongo words for those. i wanted to write more but... see, this is what happens if one's nihongo skills are very limited: stuck with simple statements and simple words and forced to an abrupt ending.

p.s. my drawing shows an aerodynamically-challenged manananggal. ;-)
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