The temporary life of a JET

Ok, so all life is temporary, but let’s not get on to that.

So, on JET, the Japanese Exchange Teaching Programme, there is a sense of temporary here. While all things have to end, and it’s hardly like I expected University to go on forever (although that consideration of doing more post grad stuff was REALLY tempting…) JET feels it much more so. This is partially because of the extreme of it ending. When your JET contract ends, so does your lease, and visa pretty much. Whereas when I ended university, I still frequent contact with many people I dealt with during uni. I still had the same house, and so on.

JET and the community that develops around/within it always comes with this clear idea that you’ll go. And not in a nebulous “I will move to Melbourne” but in a concrete sense. People you know are leaving on a regular basis. While many of the JETs I know are staying on, some are also leaving this year. The response of many Japanese people was similar. Most staff at my schools were deeply surprised when I said I didn’t go back to Australia for Christmas. When I talk on dating apps, there is always a clear assumption my being in Japan a limited time offer, and so any relationship being considered by them has that applied to it. (on a side note, I have been on way more dates in Japan than the entirety of the time I was in Australia, yay being a popular body type (not that that fixes health issues)

Maybe Japan is temporary, but maybe it isn’t. I haven’t decided that yet but this pervasive feeling that this isn’t going to be a home is hard to avoid. And that creeps into a lot of smaller choices…

Like, for 6 months nearly, I have been umming and arrring buying a 32 to 40 inch TV. I have been able to afford it consistently each and every time considered provided I shopped around, but I usually end on something like “Do I really need it? I am only going to get 2-4 years worth of use out of it and my monitor is more than enough” But since coming here I have bought a Tablet/laptop hybrid and a New 3DS without a lot of question because those could easily go beyond my Japan stay. (also because the latter would let me play Monster Hunter 4G with locals) Both of which, given that I have a PS3, Wii U, host people to watch things, and play games, makes a larger TV like that a┬áno brainer.

But also buying things for the house is a very different equation now. (although that is partially because I am unused to buying furniture beforehand).

Anyway, yeah, there is a huge sense during all things JET and Japan that this whole situation is temporary, more than most other things we do in life. Which is sometimes frustrating.

Now to go back to cleaning the house which when confronted with a huge empty space in the first place that brought this up with me.


Micro post: Backlog Update, Super Mario 3

Just a minor backlog update. So this year I set a list of games I want to finish. Many of which are games I have wanted to finish for several years, but never quite find the time. Also, because I usually want to write longer things, this is the start of “micro posts” which are much more bite sized in terms of content. Been playing some Persona Q but, got tired of it for now.

So here is what remains on the list:

Wii U
Wonderful 1013

Persona Q
Chrimson Shroud
Radiant Historia
Shovel Knight
Monster Hunter 4G (getting to G ranked missions ok)

Dangan Ronpa
Metal gear solid 2 HD
Rayman legends

Year walk
Banshee’s last cry

Higurashi When They Cry
Freedom planet

Last of Us (not to actually play, but to watch someone else play)

Corpse Party
Half Minute Hero

Megaman 2

The day the toilet attacked me.

To a lot of people, Japan is the land of the weird and the strange. With everything from the surgical masks people wear when ill, the fact every niche is covered, and that there is an entire 69 episode anime series about a kid who is just really good at baking bread. However, perhaps the most popular “Japan is weird” thing is its toilets. Often featuring a collection of buttons with an interesting array of features. Most of which I have never used.

I have seen toilets that auto flush when you stand up, I have seen toilets that thank you for using them, I have seen toilets that play noise over your own. I have even heard of urinals that measure the pressure your pee puts on the target, and then tracks high scores for that specific urinal. So Japanese toilets in the time I have been in Japan are no mystery to me in a sense…

Until last week.

Last week I went to the toilet at my base school, as per normal I sat on it, and I had a lot waste to dispose of… My thighs are a little luxurious in terms of width, and supposedly at some point, I leaned a little too much on the bidet button… Suddenly, I hear a mechanical sound that much like in a horror movie, would not be accompanied by any music. However, much like any good character in a horror movie, I was not concerned. Then I feel with some noticeable pressure a jet of water. Unsure what to do I take the worst possible action…

I stood up.

Foolishly I had overestimated the tech on this toilet, by thinking it would notice that I stood up. Which was the exact wrong idea. So I stood up, to find now it was merely throwing water down the room, and I was, with my pants down trying to flee from the high pressure warm shock of that toilet. My pants managed to loose a button in all of this, also I got water randomly all on me.

Fortunately for me, I had no more classes that day, and presumably none of the staff noticed the damper me.

And that my friends is my JET toilet story.