i'm having a quiet day at home--something i almost always relish. it's pouring out, and i'm deeply enjoying the roar of raindrops on my laundry room's tin roof and burbling water in the drainage channels under the pavement outside. i've turned down the offer to go bowling and eat dinner with the rest of the kumano-area english speakers (to their puzzlement.) without a car for independence (and dependent on the infrequent trains), i would be obligated to spend over six hours away from home, and i just don't wanna. my weeks are full of sound and commotion--hundreds of conversations with teachers and students, many spent straining to understand or infer meaning. thoughts, memories, and my desire to teach well bombard my mind. so on the weekends, sometimes i just want some extended periods of silence.
though at times i enjoy and even crave crowds, the root of who i am longs for one-on-one interaction. the opportunity for honesty and intimacy is greater, which is much more satisfying than distraction (though i have nothing against distraction)...it's just that when you begin to really KNOW someone, it's so much easier to have fun. i treasure those times when a friendship takes a great leap forward and your trust or understanding of someone deepens considerably.
i'll put this soapbox away... (scrape, clatter)
after giving myself a mini haircut, i'm baking potatoes in my tiny plug-in oven. i wasn't sure the oven even worked, discarded as it was in the laundry room, but i got lucky. many broken things just sit abandoned in people's houses because it's so much trouble to throw them away, as i've mentioned before. after only one round of dark-on-the-outside, raw-in-the-middle cookies, i seemed to find the ideal temperature to cook anything. muffins, pork chops, pumpkin, and potatoes have been baked to perfection its tiny maw.
to my supernose, potatoes baking smell exactly like the inside of a dry, hot sauna, and they're much cheaper. when i was quite small, i used a fork to stab words into big potatoes mom had given to me to scrub, and as the skins dried and pulled away from the punctures in the oven, the words would be revealed. amazingly, i vividly remember the moment when i first had the idea to try this, but sadly, i don't remember what they said.