It gets better!

Throughout our 6 years of carpooling, my dear friend Dani and I would remark how sorry we felt for first year teachers and rejoice that “it gets better.” I found out last year that it is possible to be first year teacher again even if you have 8 years of experience. I kept promising myself that our motto would come true if I just survived that first year, and so far, so good.

Though it was hard to leave family and friends this summer, I had pretty much the perfect day to welcome me back. After getting in late and not really being able to sleep (thanks, jet lag), I had finished unpacking and putting air in my bike tires before the grocery store even opened. I biked to the store and stocked up on some good for the week. I went to my friend Melissa’s to work out and eat lunch, and then we went for massages. Ricki cooked Alison and me an early dinner, and it was delightful to catch up with them. Shelley would have come too, but we took different approaches to jet lag. Hers involved sleeping.

Since jet lag continued to haunt me for this whole week, I have easily been able to wake up early for some runs. One even resulted in seeing a rainbow.  So lucky! I have also been going to bed early (7:30ish on 3 nights), and trying to take care of myself. On my first weekend, I did manage to go out both nights though I needed a much earlier taxi home than most.

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Great early morning rainbow!

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I have indulged in a coconut twice now! They are so yummy!

Though this week has been exhausting and full of meetings and preparing for students, I am excited to meet them tomorrow and begin the important work we have been discussing this week as teachers without students. I feel so much better prepared to meet student needs this year, and I am excited about my new classes. I know that there is a ton of work in store for me – isn’t there always as a teacher? But, I am not new, and for now, that is enough to make me dance for joy.

And now, I will tell you the story of the Tokyo airport – in pictures. This post is so disorganized; it is the product of a jet-lagged, beginning of the year teacher.

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Shelley told me that the Tokyo airport was full of fun signs. Somehow, I missed these on my first time through. This one explains that you should leave your camel at home…or something like that. Maybe that planes are faster than camels?

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This one is anti chickens. I really like the graphic of touching the dead chicken in the lower left.

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We did visit the origami museum in the airport, and I decided Nicole Sandretto would be in love.

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incredibly detailed landscape

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a whole bed of flowers

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dinosaurs!

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Apparently, this toy is dangerous. I like the graphic in-between snake and bite on the pink sign.

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These signs explain why some lucky cats wave with the right and some with the left. Sometimes a merchant may want to “get money,” but other times he may want to “get person.” We think that means a customer, but who knows.

So, all in all, my travels “home” were good, and my first week has been fun. Now, I just need to survive meeting my new students and delivering some great instruction. Wish me luck!

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