David Chart's Japan Diary

November 14th 2004

My life this week has been extremely boring to read about. So boring, in fact, that I only managed about three lines in my Japanese diary. I'll probably manage a bit more here, because I'm (still) better at wittering on about nothing in English than in Japanese.

That's not to say it's been a bad week. On the contrary, it's been a really good week. I've kept on top of school work, got over 90% on the big test, cleared a couple of small freelancing jobs, including the demonstration adventure for Ars Magica Fifth Edition, and done all the reading and TV watching I was hoping to fit in. I even had lunch with Thao (another classmate, who's Vietnamese) on Friday. The weekend has been extremely good; I seem to be getting everything I want to do, done. I've cleaned the bathroom and my main room, got a haircut, done shopping and laundry, read a lot, watched a couple of TV programs, and, now, written my diary. All good stuff, but, as you might have noticed, mind-numbingly tedious to read about.

One of the TV programs I'm watching at the moment is set in the women's quarters in Edo castle at the time of the first Tokugawa shoguns. (It's called 'Oo-oku: dai isshou'; I believe there was an earlier series called Oo-oku, probably set later in history.) It looks absolutely gorgeous, the soundtrack is good (although not terribly in-period), and there's lots of politics and character conflict rather than boring sword fights. On the other hand, it's in the Japanese equivalent of Shakespearean English. (Almost exactly: the early Tokugawas and Shakespeare are contemporary, in the late sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries.) I have rather more periods of 'um, what exactly did she just say?' while watching that program than while watching the others. Edo castle, incidentally, is played by Himeji castle.

No, I'm afraid that's it. I just can't make this week into an interesting read.