on my traipse down the hill this morning, i saw a snake. it was big--probably the biggest one i've ever seen in "the wild." luckily for my Rad Teacher Image, i saw it in plenty of time so as not to squeal and/or throw myself inadvertently into the rushing water of the ditch. i don't hate snakes, especially harmless ones, but they do startle. being unfamiliar with the flora and fauna of this country, i wasn't certain of its poisonous-ness, so i watched sharply from my vantage point as it swam a bit, and then came to rest directly in my path. in an effort to hurry it along, i stomped my feet noisily in parceltongue with the message, "move your skinny butt so i can get to school." i'm sure i look like a crazed mime every morning with all the weird waving, ducking and now stomping i do, but it's all in an effort to avoid walking face-first into spiderwebs. i keep my hand up, arm out like i'm keeping the sun out of my eyes but it's really my Scout Arm, cutting through cobwebs like the prow of a boat. when the sun's not out, it's a useless masquerade, but then my slow, deliberate web-chopping motions probably defeat that anyway.
once at school (and now free of classes), i settled into a reading bender. the girl who's mother once said, "sometimes i wish you would just watch tv because it's so impossible to get your attention when you're reading," has been deprived of english books for almost a year now, and i recently learned that the english selection at the Mie public library is admirable in both quantity and breadth. today i've been stuck in a book like a burr in fur, almost physically unable to separate myself from the pages. i still write every morning, but i've noticed my vocabulary slipping as i lose my english to make room for japanese. that's what they call it, losing your english. i hope, for the sake of my future as a writer, we're only playing hide and seek.