Junior high end of semester tests are this week, so over the weekend my son was supposed to study hard.  Whether he did or not, I don’t know.  I think he could have studied more.  JHS is competitive and definitely not easy.

I told him the story of when I entered JHS.  I had never actually STUDIED before in my life.  So lo and behold, I got the first test results back and did miserably.  My parents got mad and I learned my lesson.  After that, I studied hard.

My tactic was to start early with my studying.  I am not good at waiting until the last minute.  If I do that, I panic.


While he was studying, I read what is arguably the most famous modern Japanese novel.  “Botchan” by Natsume Soseki.  I read it in English, and I am not sure if my version was condensed or not.  (“Botchan” is in public domain and therefore free on the internet if you are interested.  I do recommend it.  It is very readable.)

Off to the right in the photo, it is a copy of “Botchan” in Japanese which I received from the children’s library.  (I checked it out for purposes of this photo.  I had no intention of reading it.)  I think it may be the complete book possibly, but with furigana so kids can read it.  Even though “Botchan” is for adults, there was nothing objectionable in my copy.

And also in the photo:  my son’s junior high school Japanese textbook has a snippet of “Botchan” in it.  Not the whole thing.  One chapter, I think.

My feelings about “Botchan?”  First, I do recommend it.

Second, I sometimes feel like Botchan.  Everybody else in the world is stupid and dumb and rude, and I’m the only one who’s not, of course.  I can’t figure out why.

(Except you, dear readers.  You are never stupid, dumb, or rude.)


Okay, for a break we  headed to Starbucks on the second floor of the train station!  To tell the truth, I was taken in by the savvy advertising and wanted to try the chocolate crunch frappucino.  It wasn’t as good as I expected, and extremely pricey.   I think I should have stuck to a Lotteria shake.