If you adhere to the supposed collective wisdom of “what people say” too literally, you might find yourself in uncomfortable territory. People say “you can never be too careful,” but I find that the hyperanalysis of being too careful – planning, organising, contingencies – makes me anxious. When I moved to Japan in my late twenties, I didn’t understand much of what was going on around me in the beginning, so I had little cause to worry. People could have been gossiping about me and I wouldn’t know. I couldn’t read what I assumed must be bills that came in the mail. I’d catch images of a typhoon on the news and just think: that could be a tropical storm from anywhere. My teaching colleagues at Tōyo Nishi Junior High School had some impassioned debates at our staff meetings, but what they were getting worked up about, I couldn’t tell you.
An audio version of “School’s out forever” is featured in this episode ☝️ of the Without a hitch podcastLeaving high school was hard. Leaving high school again was even harder. I was terrified the first time I left high school. The rules and routines of school held me in suspension
An audio version of “The slow thaw” is featured in this episode ☝️ of the Without a hitch podcastMatsui-sensei blinked and wiped the sweat from his eyes. His curly hair frizzed in the humidity. He wrestled to half-tuck his shirt over his belly as he introduced himself as my team-teaching associate.
Spiders, scissors and sibling rivalry – learning how to get along (safely, if possible) with your family