In December, I had the awesome opportunity to meet with an illustrator from AERA English magazine, to be turned into a cartoon (manga) strip.  One of the schools I teach with, Goover English School, set up the meeting, and invited me to participate in the interview.  I was a bit confused as to what was actually happening, and I didn’t know that I would be teaching a lesson, so I didn’t really have anything planned.  I thought it was going to be an interview, but that was not the case.  I have found that while there is often no communication breakdown in person with Japanese English speakers, over the phone, there is often a communication breakdown.  At least for me.  After picking up a representative from my school and two workers from AERA English magazine, I showed them around our house, served them drinks and food, invited everyone into the living room, and then sat down ready to be interviewed.  The room was silent.  I was waiting for them to begin, and nothing happened.  So I asked the representative what to do, and he told me to teach her.  Hmmm…. “Teach her (the illustrator)?  Teach her what?”  I should have expected the response. “Teach her English.”  Ah…..so I threw together a “lesson” that involved talking a lot about myself and asking her about traveling to America.  We then moved into football, and general guidelines for talking with a stranger.  It was a bit awkward, but I didn’t know what to do.   Despite not really knowing what to expect, and having to wing it, it was a really fun and interesting experience.  I laughed at how amazed they were by the gallon of milk and by our large stove.  I think they laughed at our paper lamps and obi decoration on the tv stand.  It was a great time.  Please enjoy the translation provided by a friend of a friend!

Advertisements