Firehose で にほんご を のんでいます

Nihonglish. That’s what I’m calling my new conglomeration of Japanese and English as I start to cobble together new bits of Japanese and find that I’m forgetting some simple English vocab and grammar. My intent had been to write here about the process of language learning, and what I’ve learned so far from our 6 weeks of intensive Japanese classes. And I will just have to save that for later, but for now I will say that it feels like trying to drink from a firehose.  My sentence above might be correct, …and it might not be.

The literal translation is “I am drinking Japanese by firehose”.  (and the で should maybe be a から)。It probably doesn’t make any sense in Japanese, but that’s a fair reflection of where I’m at.   I commented to a friend that when speaking Japanese I felt like I was the equivalent of a 3-year old, asking “why?” “why?” “doushite?” all the time. She responded that after only 7 weeks, I was aging quickly. I thought about that, and even though I did have some time invested in language classes before arriving, during my first week my language abilities were infantile. I was reduced to what felt like babbling different consonant-vowel combinations that I knew were Japanese, and just hoped I was producing coherent, inoffensive words.

So yes, 3, if it’s even that, feels like an accomplishment.

My head is too full of grammar and vocab (though it refuses to behave when needed) to write more here. I’m all atangle in ‘tango’ and ‘bunpo’, but here are some にほんでとったしゃしんです。



Eihei-ji: the main training temple of Sōtō Zen. Fukui Prefecture.



Ishizaki Houtou Omatsuri on the Noto Peninsula.


From Senmaida: A Thousand Rice Paddies in Shiroyone


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