on justice -Benedict/James Orbinski

''Justice only fails when we fail to imagine that it is possible. But like so many things, it depends not only on imaginings but on what we do.'' - James Orbinski

Saturday, June 28, 2008

I love Dazaifu!

I did it!
I finally decided to drop everything and become a professional confectioner...
... For one Saturday.

以下是我在我最愛的蛋糕店 ''LE COUPLE'' 裡打工記錄:

Me and my good friend and teacher, Hatsune, stuffing ourselves with sweets during BREAKTIME. Note how much bigger my piece is... The Chef wanted to make sure that I gain at least one kilo after today, and gave me the biggest portion of almost everything we had today.

This is the Chef, Suga-san and his lovely wife, my favourite people in Dazaifu. 

Hatsune teaching me how to make Chiffon Cake. If only I had all the gigantic high-tech machines with me, would I be able to reproduce the Masterpiece she baked.

The Chef decorating the delicious Tiramisus. 

My favourite staff!! I'll miss them so much!

Today, I woke up at 7, and got ready just in time around 8, only to find out that it's pouring outside... So without my speedy bike, I had to walk in the rain and arrived a tad bit late for ''work''. =)

When I first entered the store through the back door, not as a customer, but a staff this time, I was welcomed by the Chef and his assistant, Hatsune. 

Being the forgetful/clumsy person that I am, I forgot to bring an apron. When the Chef turned up a few minutes later with the staff uniform to lend me, I was kind of glad that I did. 

The first task given to me was to cut oranges. Trust me, it's a lot more complicated than it sounds! The pieces were prepared for cake decorations, so unlike the ugly ones I usually cut for myself, they had to be almost equal in shape, and that was probably the hardest thing today. I think Hatsune noticed my clumsiness and patiently taught me several times, and then she and the Chef stared at me nervously as I [even more nervously] began to cut the oranges. 

I did not take any pictures of the poor, uneven oranges.

Yet, the Chef still used them (without making any comments, of course) for the Chocolate and Orange mousse cake, and the decorations he taught me to do kind of covered the horrendous oranges. 

And in Dazaifu, being the small and charming town that it is, it isn't very hard to bump into people you know three, four times a day.

The third customer we had today was a group of mothers and one of my elementary students.

As soon as they entered the shop, I saw Yu-kun.
He walked to the counter, and stared at the cakes and not at the person with the familiar voice he thought he heard. 

Then, a few minutes later, when I finished wrapping cakes for the other customers, I turned back and found Yu-kun staring back at me with his eyes (and mouth) extremely widened. 

The same thing happened with one of my Jr High school students.

Do I look that different?
Or should I say... professional...? 


What a great day....
Full of heavenly sweets, delicious lunch (Chef  拿手的義大利麵+店裡出名的Pudding au Caramel), and amazing company.


I love Dazaifu (...for those of you who didn't already know that)!

Thursday, June 26, 2008

『I WANT A BIG DIAMOND RING...made with a pretty origami paper, if you will』

A weekend of self-pampering... just a bit [over the top].

I don't think I'll ever get asked to sign autographs again after I leave Japan.
Especially on foreheads.
Today, after a 4th graders' class, Yu-chan, a.k.a Chibi-chan (the one in black) asked for my autograph. And when it was his turn, I joked and said I'll write it on his forehead. 
''YES!!! PLEASE!!!''
Are you sure?
He insisted. And MAME [豆] ON THE FOREHEAD became the popular item to sport around for the rest of the day. 

And here is something I'll remember in this class... ARM WRESTLING!!
I was challenged by SHO-chan and he didn't go easy on me at all, being the little gentleman he is.

Then other kids got in line to arm wrestle with their weak English-sensei. I lost everytime... some on purpose, some not exactly on purpose. Haha~ =D

Today, during cleaning time, something really sweet and funny happened:








The one who popped the question is TAKU-chan!

NOT cleaning...


SweetSorrow - No matter how I think, I'm still [연애시대 ost]

First challenge to type Korean... correctly...
Let's hope none of my Korean friends see this and find ridiculous typos after typos.

These are the lyrics to one of my favourite Korean songs, from the drama 연애시대.

아무리 생각해도 난 너를 아무리 생각해도 난 너를
잊은듯 눈감아도 난너를 아닌도ㄹ아서도 난너를
조금만 솔직해도 난너를 그렇게 아파하도록 너를
이렇게 바라보도록 쓸쓸한 눈으로 다만웃고만 있었지

아무리 해어도져 난너를 매일 또 이별해도 난너를
이미 넌 꿈이래로 난너를 정말로 끝이래도 난너를
한번만 용기내도 난 너를 그렇게 아파해도룩 너를
이렇게 눈물짓도록 다시는 다가가차마 안을 수 없었지

나이대로 더 있으면 이대로 머무르면 너를
더사랑할 것 같아
나 이대로 더있으면 이대로 바라보면 떠난
수 ㄴ없을 것만 같아

내작은 어깨 ㄴ위로 나 너를 ㄴ언제나 힘이뒤도룩 너를
따스한 햇살처림 나 다시 또 다가가 감싸
나 이대로 서성이면 이대로 눈 물지으면 너를
다사랑할 것같아

나 이대로 더 있으면 이대로 바라보면 너를
믈잠을 것만 같아

아무리생각해도 나너를 아무리 생각허더 나 너를
아무리 해어져도 난너를 매일 또 이별해도 나 너를
잊은 듯 눈가아도 난너를 아닌 듯돌아서도 나 너를

이미 넌 꿈이래도 난 너를 정말로
끝이 래도 난나를

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Last Days...

This is my brother in Canada...

The purple kid is a [yet another] mini-duplicate of my brother... Taku-chan.
Family in Japan. No wonder I don't get homesick easily!
Taka-chan, the other one in blue is one of the sweetest boy in all my schools. He told me to wait for his phone call in August. 
Today, I joined the ''Magic Club'' after school, and he was very persistent in showing me all the impressive magic tricks he learned. 

This is Mao, the first student in the 5th grade to jump on my back. She also scribbled on my hands with her black marker, and when I finally glanced at her masterpiece when she was done, I ended up with ANPANMAN on my right hand and ''RUSHIA LOVE'' on the left. 

Today was my last day at this elementary school!
At the end of each lesson today, the students of each grade got together and sang songs, and I received posters and binders of farewell messages along with other hand-made presents. The pink thing I'm holding is a cellphone bag with my name spelled correctly according to most of my students here: R-U-S-I-A. But at least they left out that extra 'S'.


Monday, June 23, 2008

Weekend with my dear 小鳥様

This weekend was so fun, and went by so fast.

This is Friday, at work - elementary school, my last class with the 5th Graders:
Taka, the little boy in the blue-shirt is the shortest kid in his class, and worries about not growing taller. 
''I'm the exact same height as I was in 4th grade!'' 
How do I get taller? The kids in my table kept asking me, since 165cm sounds monstrously tall to the tiny 10 year-olds.

This is the interesting conversation Taka had with his ALT/Nutritionist at lunchtime:

Hmmm... You should play basketball. 
''Yeah... but I like baseball more.''
Beef! What about BEEF? 
''Mmm hmm... I like beef.''
And milk, maybe. I think.
''OH! I drink milk everyday!!!'' Taka holds up his milk high enough so that I can see a drops milk dripping from his straw, and some from the corner of his mouth. 
(We shouldn't talk and drink at the same time, Taka-chan.)

Well, there you go. I think you just grew an inch right there.

Friday night, I went to pick up my long-awaited visitor... from TOKYO!
And just look what this cute girl brought along... 


And this weekend was just filled with surprises after surprises. I'm getting so many goodies and it's not even Christmas season yet.
Look what we found in TOSU, a small, inaka town about 20 minutes away by JR train.


In Taiwan, my cousins brought me to this famous ice cream store and I fell love with this brand after my first taste of their Mint Chocolate flavored ice cream.

And yet... we meet again... in JAPAN! 
I just hope Canada won't disappoint me, there'd better be one near my house.

So Japan is known for its high quality customer service. But did you know Fukuoka is famous for its friendliness and generosity?

At my favourite CAKE SHOP in Tenjin area, MONT-BLANC.
After our 何とも言えない美味しい lunch-set, we got these MACAROONS for free! サビースだって!^0^

And our luck didn't seem to run out... 
At our next stop, ''Qu'il fait bon'', a famous TART & PIE shop which I've started to frequent VERY, VERY regularly during the last two months, we ordered two yummy tarts - and look what surprises we found on our plates...

An extra [mini] slice!

The pretty waitress with shiny eyes mumbled something like, ''Here you go, please have these..."#$%&0*?+&'....'' and gently put down our places with a big, broad smile. I think we smiled all the way through this special TEA TIME.

小鳥、また一緒に福岡や鳥栖に行こうね!その後は、王子様とフランスやギリシアユロッパの旅かな。へへへ、GOOD NEWSを待っているからね。



Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Countdown... how many days?

I'm glad that I'm keeping [some] records of my school days, especially ones with memorable/hilarious conversations. Today, one of my kid asked me to sing the national anthem of Canada. I tried, and then realized that I couldn't sing the whole thing, and made him sing the Japanese one. It was a great way to warm up the class - either the kids loved to hear us sing, or they enjoyed the sight of people being horrendously embarrassed. 

This is us, doing what we're not supposed to... taking pictures in front of the Principal's office. I wonder if he heard us. And then came the tickling torture - they have small hands but fast fingers, and from now on I will carry a whistle, so that teachers nearby can come to my rescue upon my desperate scream for help.


Drinking milk so fast that I almost choked on it. They wanted to play dodgeball, and there was nothing more important- even with my stomach at stake. This is probably why I didn't play as well today -a full and heavy, and well... the ball was definitely too soft.

Farewell pictures...! I'm going to have so many of these in the coming month... in the LAST month! Yeah! check out our original pose.





Saturday, June 14, 2008

Nostalgia hits...

Oh, I haven't even left Fukuoka yet, and just watching this MV is making me miss it a bit already.



Wednesday, June 11, 2008


When I thought that elementary school kids are the hyper ones...

(well, they are, too...)

But I was wrong...! 








And I'll never forget the look on Kazu-chan's face... 
『ちょーちょっと...!退けえよ!』(''No-no-no-no-no-no... let me pass!'')






These are my allies...

Chatting away...

Two more days! ^0^

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Thanks, Oggy!

Few people share the same sense of humour as Mr. Oggy Gloop (my dear little brother, OG LEE) and 鍋ちゃん (my Dear MockingBird)...

Thanks to them, I never run out of good jokes, and can always count on them for those extra wrinkles around my eyes.

This is the hilarious video Oggy sent me, and many many thanks, Wei...! You made my day with this Family Guy craziness.


Wednesday, June 4, 2008

That's my SHOE!!!

Today, I was chatting with 鍋ちゃん about my day at school, and she surprised us both when she blurted out:

''So what exactly IS your job?''

We both laughed out loud...

This is what my schedule today looked like:

1) 8:40-11:40 
Sketch festival with one of my Jr. High at our famous  天満宮 shrine
2) 1:00-4:30 
-Watching Simpsons with my English club at another Jr. High
-Sitting in an English class (not taught by me, so I just freely sat beside my 熊, イッキ、and participating in games with the students)
-Playing Baskbetball while cleaning the Gym with my chatty 三年生s
-Practicing soccer with the 部活members (my soccer skills HAVE improved!)
3) 4:30-4:45 
-Biking home, bumping into my 小学生s

還有,最近上課 (國中)發現我的學生越來越沒有分寸,怎麼當初乖巧可愛的國一生變得沒大沒小的? 女生還算好,她們依然乖乖的叫我『ルシア先生。』雖然有幾個已經會找我八卦﹣班上的情侶的發展等等。(And I have to admit, class gossip is really interesting (^-^);...) 

倒是有幾個調皮的男同學﹣有些大不了高我半個頭﹣就有事沒事得意洋洋的墊起腳,笑我矮。>.<, 還故意把我的名字亂念:好好的『Lucia』 突然變成 『Garcia』, 最近他們又對我的小綽號『Russia』 上了癮。

拿他們沒辦法我只好也跟著他們一起瘋,把他們的名字縮短,亂叫一通。(and not minding in the least, they gladly respond to these crazy nicknames I give them.)

今天最離譜的是....一進教室的時候,我右腳的鞋子竟然被那最愛整人的''Ryo-chan no.1''搶走。

比他小一個頭的我也盡了力,(but my energy only lasted me a few minutes) 到後來也只能眼爭爭的看著我那支鞋子被他跟''Yasu-chan''丟來丟去。兩個斑上最高大的男生喜歡的遊戲也不如小學生的惡作劇嘛。





Ai, sometimes it's good to know that we don't always have to act grown-up.


恋愛写真 ー大塚 愛



碧々とした 夜空の下
あなたが見てた 後ろ恋姿
時折見せる 無邪気な寝顔
あたしが見てた 恋しい姿
一生にもうない このキモチ
あの頃のふたりを 今 春 めぐり逢う

Monday, June 2, 2008


Sometimes we need to go round and round and round...
and maybe
Left again...

Until the skies clear up
Your footprints no longer wet and hollow in the ground

''A Chance for Sunshine''.

I never knew that this was the English title for this book.
I finally bought the hard-cover version in Taiwan.
One of my favourite, and it's never going off my bookshelf.