Its orientation/guidance/class shopping week so have just been floating about from classroom to classroom trying to decide on what to take and what to avoid.
This year I am back on the Japanese learning bullet train of a bandwagon, so have to do two sets of class shopping; one for the Japanese Language classes and another for my Grad School classes.
After having done this for a year and a half, I don't hyperventilate over it anymore like the newbies. Collect the syllabus, scrutinize the sensei, make sure the workload doesn't include a BIG test (I'm more of a continuous assessment kind of person), and then of course, try to mastermind the perfect timetable with enough work and enough playtime to make the semester bearable.
Everything's gonna be alright.
well, everything except for the small matter of...self-introductions. argh. *cringe*
self-introductions in almost every.single.class. >_<
In the language classes they are done in Japanese. Its the same thing over and over again. Name, country, field of study, how long have you been studying Japanese blah blah bleh. Although, you're surrounded by foreigners and the language teacher is the only Japanese native speaker in the class, so the pressure to sound perfect is off.
In the Grad School classes though, things take a bit of a twist. While the majority of the classes I enroll for in the Grad School are in English, I do take a few that are conducted in Japanese, the more practical ones though, like Video Journalism, so I can figure out whats happening most of the time (along with my fingers working my electronic dictionary at lightening speed).
Also have to ensure that the teacher knows English so I can bombard him with questions when I really can't compute.
How I get effed over with the simple self-introductions then? Well, as I discovered last semester, my brain has this bizarre ability of being able to understand what is being said, BUT it cannot have me say it. So I get the gist of things, understand the questions, the explanations. But cannot process a reply.
Introduce yourself and explain what kind of photography background you have, and what you are interested in photographing now. (Said in Japanese)
gulp. Choke. look around at all the native Japanese speakers that surround me.
I excuse myself in Japanese and ask if I um...can...answer...
in English. >_<