Friday, September 17, 2010

Cattle class

Well, I was going to treat you to a nice rollicking whine, but then I met a zillion of my students when I went out to get something to eat. They were in a happy kind of Friday mood, and put me in one as well. So, behold...the edited rant and whine.

Please have a look at the section of the ferry where I sat today...

You may think it resembles a corridor. This would be because it was a corridor.

How did this all transpire? Well, by the time I got to the ferry terminal after leaving school, a ton of people were already in line for the ferry. As one of the last to board, all the spots inside were taken. So, those of us left over started looking for nooks and crannies to fit ourselves into. On a balmy day, I might have headed outside, but this was a chilly evening with a strong wind blowing.

I found this little spot (it's pretty much a mirror image of the area where the legs are in the above pic). Another girl also came and settled down across from me and closer to the door. It was nice to have some company in the overflow hallway. All in all, it wasn't a bad spot. I figured I'd enjoy my music and my book, and be back in Wakkanai before I knew it. We hallway people got a few double takes, but I'm getting pretty used to those. ;-)

As the ferry started off, I opened my book and soon found myself absorbed in the story. Do you remember the wind I briefly mentioned earlier? Well, I realized that my old friend from the winter was back. Foolishly, I tried to fight back. I continued reading until it became impossible. While my earlier snack decided to have an internal dance party, I decided to try to close my eyes. I dozed off sitting up with my face buried in my backpack. That was a mistake, so I tried drawing my knees up and resting my head on my knees. This was a little better.

Exhausted from attempting to nap, I took a look at my watch. Oh, sweet victory! The ferry would be landing any second! I had slept much longer than I thought! Oh, Happy Da....waitaminit... ARGH! That was the second hand! I still had a good 45 minutes left to go and no reading or napping to do.

Usually, when it's time to leave the ferry, I linger until the end. I generally don't see any reason to stand in a line to be one of the first off the ferry.

That was not the case this time.

But, I have to report that I am much happier now - it's amazing what students and a bit of ice cream can do for one's outlook on life.

Good morning, part 3

Rishiri from Rebun

Monday, September 13, 2010

I've heard of sawing logs, but...

...Log pushing? Just thought I'd take a minute to share some photos from the log pushing festival. It was a beautiful (and hottttttttttt) day, and a good time was had by all. Well, probably not all, but close enough.

All my pix seem to have loaded in reverse order, so we'll just go backwards through the day. I suppose if you wanted to go in order, you could go to the bottom and work your way up. :-D

We left while an exciting sort of Power Ranger play was going on. It looked very exciting, anyway. Couldn't tell you what was going on, but I'm fairly certain that the thing in front of the drums was a Bad Dude (in the evil genius sense, not the other sense).

Here we are, shielding our fair and delicate skin from the blistering sun. By this point in the day, we were pretty much worn out!

Three ALT teams participated in the log pushing - go Foreign Ladies 1! They lost. They put up a pretty good fight, though! There was actually no Foreign Ladies 2 team, as most of their members pulled out.

And yes, a team of ladies dressed as French maids.
The Foreign Gentiemen 2 team. That's what their sign said, anyhoo. They actually made it to the second round. That was because of their very serious faces. This is the proper log pushing expression, I suppose.

Two random teams battling it out for log pushing victory!

The log, without people desperately hanging onto it.

The teams, preparing to meet the log.

The view from the train window. The train often slows down as we pass this spot. That's Rishiri in the distance. The black coffee was an accidental purchase, but wound up tasting pretty good, though I definitely prefer the addition of cream.

And there you have the log pushing day in reverse! Er...I mean... Reverse in day pushing log the have you there and.