最近の出来事

今週はまた休み!

ニュージーランドの大学は日本の大学と比べると休みが多いと思う。1学期は5ヶ月ぐらいで、授業は3ヶ月半も2週間の休みも期末試験時期(最後の3週間に行われる)もついている。夏休みも3ヶ月半。そう言ってもこっちの大学の方が大変だし、卒業するのが難しい 。 今週は休みなのに、毎日レポートをかいてることに… どう見ても嫌だ (>_<)

仕方が無いなぁ~

コーヒーを飲む時間さえあれば、それだけでいい…かな?σ^_^;

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Ichiriki

コーヒーが大好きな私にとって、カフェに行くのが最高の時間の過ごし方。こー日を飲みながら、本を読んだりすることとか気持ちいいでしょう?だけど、日本と比べると、ニュージーランドのコーヒーはちょっと違う。メニューの定番はエスプレッソ, コーヒー, ラッテ, カプチーノ, フラットホワイト, アイスコーヒーなど。サイズ2つ、3つもあるし、値段は$4~10で、サイズによって違う。クリーマーもない。

去年日本についてから、カフェでコーヒー飲みに行くと、いつも不満足。味も違うし、サイズも小さい。だから初めて関大前のカフェ、Ichirikiに行ってコーヒーを飲んだ時びっくりした。まるでニュージーランドのコーヒーを飲んでるみたい!と思ってた。その時から週に1,2回ぐらいIchirikiに行くようになったんだ。コーヒーだけでなく、サンドイッチも夜のメニューも美味しいし、雰囲気も落ち着くし、マースターもいつも優しかった。

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I like coffee. I like Japan.

Coffee in Japan? Well…

I’m not going to lie – cafe’s in Japan let me down a little on the coffee front. You order coffee? You get strong, black coffee with packet of sugar and a creamer. You order an iced coffee? You get cold black coffee in ice, with a creamer and a packet of liquid sweetener. Sure, you can get milky variants (Cafe au lait or cappuccino were the most common in my experience), but be warned – they will probably be a little expensive and they will proably be small. There were a few times I ordered an iced coffee only to find that it was so strong that even after adding two sugar syrups and two + creamers, I couldn’t actually finish it. It’s not like I don’t enjoy the occasional black coffee, perhaps I am more of a wimp than I thought.

Perhaps New Zealand’s superb coffee set the bar too high.

Anywho, severely deprived of decent cafe coffee, Ryan and I managed to find solace in Ichiriki – a sandwich cafe near University. I think the thing that drew us most to this cafe, was that the coffee (Cafe Latte) was one of the first (and perhaps only…) coffees in Japan that we managed to find that resembled the coffee that you can find in New Zealand. We later found out that the sandwiches, cakes, and dinner menu were also superb, as well as the company – as we made friends with the owner and some of the staff. By the end of the year, we were coming in once or twice (or sometimes more!) a week. Ichiriki was probably one of my favourite places in Japan, and we spent many a happy time there, drinking coffee, playing pokemon and reading (Game of Thrones). It made for a very teary farewell at the end of the year, but I can’t wait to go back again.

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Autumn Leaves 紅葉

最近ニュージーランドに秋になってきた。日本に秋と言えば、やっぱり紅葉を思いつく。ニュージーランドに紅葉があるとも言えるけど、日本のような紅葉でもないし、全然対したことでもない。去年の11月に嵐山の紅葉見に行った時は、初めての紅葉の体験だった。ニュージーランドの紅葉はほとんど茶色、それに常緑樹も多いので、その初めての紅葉は信じられないぐらい綺麗だった。赤、黄色、オレンジ、木が燃えるような紅葉だった。

紅葉を思い出すと、日本が恋しい (u_u)

Autumn in Japan is probably my favourite season. First of all because Autumn means that it isn’t summer. And because summer is suffocatingly hot, and once you’ve been in 30+ degree weather for a solid three months and the coldest temperature your body experiences in that time is the 28 degrees your apartment air conditioning is set to, Autumn seems like a beautiful, beautiful paradise. Apart from this though, with Autumn comes the spectacle that is Autumn leaves.

Before actually experiencing 紅葉(Autum leaves) in Japan, the image I had in my head was dominated by my experiences of brown crunchy leaves on the footpath, and brown spotty leaves on the trees – hardly a sight of great wonder. I don’t think people really pay much attention to the Autumn leaves in New Zealand. In Japan, however it is hard not to pay attention to them. The trees change colour from green to vibrant shades of red, yellow, orange and brown, and during the later months of Autumn, people make a day of going to view the leaves. Alternatively, they go at night when the trees are lit up with giant spotlights.

While in Japan, I also participated in this spectacle when I visited Arashiyama in November. I had seen the leaves changing gradually, and I knew that Autumn in Japan was nothing like what I had experienced in New Zealand. I was not, however prepared for just how beautiful it would be.

I’ll let the photos speak for me (please also observe my appropriately coloured coat).DSCF5567 DSCF5580 DSCF5600 DSCF5669 DSCF5672 DSCF5812

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I have a small face

初めて日本に行った時、よく言われたことは「わぁー、顔ちっちゃい!」。そう聞いて、意味まったく分からなかった。最初に考えたことは、「顔がちっちゃいって、どういう意味だろう?ほめ言葉かな~?顔が普通より小さい?それと、身体と比べると顔が小さいって意味?」それから何回も言われたことがあるけど、ほめ言葉のつもりで言われてること以外に、まだまだその言葉の意味ほとんど分からない。日本人がなぜ顔の大きさに気になってるのか、誰かがが説明できれば、教えてください (>_<) どう見ても人の顔が同じ大きさに見える!

On one of the first days of my very first trip to Japan in 2007, I was in the high school gymnasium with all the other students as we waited for an assembly to start. Some of the girls nearby me looked at me, and turned to giggle to their friends. Then they said to me something that has baffled me ever since, 「わぁー、顔ちっちゃい!」, for those of you who do not understand Japanese, I was told that I have a small face. At the time, I had absolutely no idea how to deal with this comment. I have a small face? Is that a compliment? Is my face smaller than average? Do I have a small face in comparison to the rest of my body? As all these thoughts rushed through my mind, I simply nodded and smiled. They didn’t seem to be saying it in a negative way, perhaps I had simply misheard them, or the phrase had some kind of nuanced meaning that I didn’t know about. I pondered this conundrum throughout the whole month I spent in Japan and never really quite grasping what it meant to have a ‘small face’, beyond the vague understanding that it must be a compliment.

Although I have been to Japan since, including my year-long exchange last year, my understanding of this concept has hardly expanded. My limited understanding of the matter is that a ‘small face’ is related to the size of one’s cheeks/cheekbones, and their jawline, and perhaps the size of your head overall. Although I don’t really know for sure. What I do know is that whenever I am told in that my face absolutely tiny and try to picture it in my mind, all I can think of is a person with a head the size of a tennis ball.

Having a large face seems to have become something of a complex for Japanese people (men included! I once saw a wee article in a magazine about a young man who felt his face was too large), and having a small face is greatly sought after. In Japan, I saw on TV a number of times different facial massage techniques said to reduce facial size. They’d show the before and after and everyone would ooh and aah about how small the person’s face had become, while I remained fixated on the before shot, trying to work out how they had a big face to begin with.

At least I can go to Japan and be amongst all the attractive girls, with their perfect hair and skin, and their high-heels and make-up, and know that I have the ultimate weapon in my disposal. A small face.

 

To finish off this post, here is a (slightly old) picture of my small face and Ryan in Japan.

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家族とランチ

Yesterday mum and dad came to Wellington to see me. Well, they really came to see Robert Plant, but I like to pretend otherwise…

So yes, yesterday mum and dad headed off to the Robert Plant concert kitted out in their Led Zeppelin T-shirts. They managed to get a decent seat (well, patch of ground to stand on…) and it sounds like they had a marvelous time. Good present buying, mum 😉

Today, we explored the second hand book shops of Wellington and went out to lunch at Mr. Bun. After lunch, I regretfully headed off home to write an assignment, but mum, dad and Claire headed off to the Colonial Cottage. Unfortunately they arrived only to find that it was closed for refurbishment and mum and dad returned to my apartment to have their 50th coffee of the day.

昨日のポストは姉妹について書いたけど、今日は両親のことについて書くことにした。昨日、ロバート・プラントのコンサートに行くため、私の両親がウェリントンに来てたのだ。

私と両親は仲がいい。そして生まれてから色々教えてくれたり、手伝ってくれたりして、すごく尊敬してる。お母さんがいつも友達、家族、知らない方、誰でも喜んで助けてくれる。頭もいいし、料理も上手だし、何でもできるお母さんだと思う。私がお母さんに似てると何回も言われたことがあるので、なんと嬉しい ♡

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そしてお父さんは優しくて、聞き上手で、いつも私の言うことをまじめに聞いてくれる。ずっと女に囲まれてるのに、一度でも文句を言ったこともなし、我慢強いお父さん。

20130410-215008.jpg今日、両親、妹、そしてライアンと昼ごはん食べに行った。ミスター・バンと言うパン屋さんに行って食べた。

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三人姉妹♪

I have two sisters.

One is older, one is younger. That makes me the middle sister.

I have always gotten on with my dear sisters very well. Apart from that time Alice and I didn’t let Claire play Barbies with us, that is… (Sorry about that, Claire-o, hopefully we made it up to you with all the fun Barbie adventures after that).

Last September (to my delight), they came and visited me in Japan. While this did involve two weeks of a very crowded apartment, I was super happy to show my darling sisters the Japan that I love so much ♡

Because they had taken the effort to come all the way to Japan (it isn’t cheap after all!) I wanted to make sure that they had a great time, and tried my best to show them as much of Osaka, and its surrounding areas that I could. We spent many days shopping and sampling local cuisine, visited the otters at the aquarium (both Alice and Claire had raved to me about their utter awesomeness beforehand), saw Osaka from the top of Osaka Castle, got pestered by strange old men, went up the giant escalator in the Umeda Sky Building, sang the night away at karaoke, hung out with our buddy the sheep at Tennoji Zoo, saw the sights of Kyoto, and did all this whilst melting in the sweltering heat of an Osaka summer.

I had such a great time escorting my sisters around Japan, and I hope the time they spent there was as memorable to them as it was to me.

私は姉妹2人がいる。

妹1人とお姉ちゃん1人。と言うことで、3人姉妹。

ずーと昔から、喧嘩も全然しないほど私の家族の全員仲が良い。特に高校の頃お姉ちゃん(アリス)が家から引っ越してから、妹(クレア)と仲がもっと良くなってきた。性格は大きく異なってるけど、今でもよく映画見たり、カフェに行ったり、一緒にブラブラしたりすることだけで、なんと嬉しくなる。

去年の九月、アリスとクレアが日本に私を訪ねてきた。2週間3人で私の狭いアパートで泊まったことが大変だとも言えるけど、何よりも楽しかった。毎日が暑くてしかたがなくても、2週間で色んな所に行けた。

大阪城、私とクレア

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大阪城、クレアとアリス

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ClaireとClaire’s

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 天王寺動物園、アリスとクレアと私IMG_5319

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カラオケ、アリスと私

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アリスとクレア

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京都、3人姉妹

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ラーメン♡

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自販機がどこでもある~!

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私の大好きな日本をアリスとクレアに案内してあげられて良かった ♡

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チョコレート+コーヒー = ♡

Coffee is delicious. And chocolate is also delicious. Thus logically, eating chocolate whilst drinking coffee must be a good idea, right?

On one of our many coffee adventures, Ryan and I recently paid a visit to Butler’s Chocolate Cafe. One of the highlights of this cafe is that one is entitled a free chocolate with their beverage. And I’m not talking a cheap lump of overly sweet chocolate here either. Their chocolate selection includes more traditional truffles, to baileys flavored or salted caramel chocolates. I’d say there’s probably something for everyone there, an even though you get a chocolate for free with your drink, it would be more than worth it to buy a couple extra (but this is coming from a chocolate fiend…). The coffee is quite delicious as well, but the star of the day was most definitely the chocolate. I got a dark chocolate salt one, and Ryan selected a latte truffle.

Yum (^。^)

コーヒーもチョコレートも美味しいでしょう?だからコーヒーを飲みながら、チョコレートを食べるのが最高の気見合わせ ♡

私とライアンはカフェに行くのが大好きで、ウェリントンに色んな素敵なカフェがあちらこちらにある。私達のお気に入りカフェの1つは、バトラーズ・チョコレート・カフェ(Butler’s Chocolate Cafe)と言う場だけど、先週久しぶりに行くことにした。バトラーズはカフェだけでなく、チョコレートの専門店でもある。ドリンクを買えば、ただでチョコレートも貰うことが、魅力的だし、特にチョコレートがもっと買いたくなるぐらい美味しい
(*^_^*)

色んなチョコレートから選べる。私は塩チョコレート、ライアンはコーヒー味のチョコレートにした。

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コーヒーも美味しかった (o^^o)

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またチョコレートを食べに行きたい〜(>_<)

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パーティ

This weekend was Casey’s 21st birthday party.

昨日は友達(ケーシー)の21歳の誕生日パーティ。

朝から他の友達2人と写真とか集めて、プレゼントとしてスクラップブックを作ってた。

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The theme of the party was Ancient Greece, so everyone came adorned with impressive toga sheets, beautiful long dresses and very awesome looking helmets. It was a really fun night 🙂

パーティは古代ギリシアのテーマで、皆トーがとか着て来たんだ。

遠くから来た友達も会えたし、21歳になった友達もメッチャ嬉しそうだった ♡

グレース、セーラ、私

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セーラ、私、ケーシー
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セーラ、ケリー、私
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グレース、ジェレミー、私、ブラドリー、ダニエル
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高校の頃から友達♡
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ピザとパン

Aside from the blackberry foraging, we had many fun food adventures at the holiday house. Being Easter weekend, we ate many festive treats. Mum made some hot cross buns which we feasted on for Easter breakfast, and we had a steady supply of chocolate that was supplemented by the creation and consumption of a magnificent chocolate house. We also went out to lunch on Easter Sunday to celebrate grandad’s birthday in advance (his actual birthday is on the 6th). The selection of restaurants in the area was rather limited, and in the end we went to ‘the floating rock cafe’ which specializes in delicious, delicious pizza. The flavours were simple, yet perfectly combined with one another – my favorite was definitely the basil one 😉

イースターと言えば、やっぱりチョコレートが欠かせないけど、チョコレート以外に色んなもの食べた (^。^)

晩ご飯はバーベキュー。ニュージーランドのバーベキューと日本のバーベキューはちょっと異なっているとおもう。お父さんは肉をバーベキューしながら、お母さんがサラダなど作ったりして、どっちもできあがったら家族皆と一緒に食べることになっている。晴れたら外で食べることが多いし、バーベキューは夏の定番。

毎年イースターにお母さんがホットクロスバンと言う、十字飾りのついたお菓子パンを作ってくれて、イースターの朝ごはんに食べる。ホットクロスバンの「クロス」はその十字飾りで、キリストが磔にされた十字架と言う意味だそう。イースターバンにも言われている。シナモンの香りが強くて、ただバターかジャムを塗っていただくのがオススメ。

ツランギにはレストランやカフェがあまりないけど、日曜日にお祖父ちゃんの誕生日を祝うためにピザ食べに行くことにした。the floating rock cafe と言うピザの専門店で、ピザの種類が少なかくてシンプルで美味しかった ♡

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毎日 散歩

In Turangi, one of my favorite things to do is take a walk. There are a number of walking tracks that run around the edge of the lake, giving the walker the opportunity to view both water and foliage.

I am always captivated by the sounds. The first thing that strikes you is the lack of sound. No cars or people, just silence. That is, apart from the birds singing all around you. Sometimes I just stop and stand there.

To be able to take such walks every day would be quite a treat.

散歩が大好きなんだけど、Turangiでの散歩は最高 ♡
あそこにタウポ湖という、ニュージーランドの最大湖が近くにあるし、森もあるので、色んな光景が見える。

森の静けさが街の騒ぎに慣れた私を慰めてくれたし、野鳥の鳴き声もとっても落ち着くし、たまに立ち止まってただ森に聞いてたんだ。

毎日このような散歩に行けたらいいけどね (u_u)

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