カテゴリ:英会話 プライベート レッスン( 47 )   

My first time to Susukino   

Hello everyone,

I was lucky to arrive in Sapporo on the 25th of September 2017, which was early autumn so the scenery was fantastic. The green leaves started to turn yellow, the weather was really nice, and the temperature was perfect, around 17 degrees. My friends and I decided that every week we’re going to have a new adventure, go to new places and travel around Sapporo, after that, Hokkaido. The first place that we decided to visit is the Susukino area.

It was a beautiful Sunday night, we met up at Sapporo station, and since everyone was hungry, we went to a curry restaurant. That was the first time I had soup curry here in Japan. We have curry in my home country (Vietnam), but the flavor is much different. Vietnamese curry uses a variety of spices, but the main ingredients that we use are only chicken and sweet potato, while the soup curry here has a mix of different vegetables, which I really love. After dinner we headed to a small, cozy bar. Unfortunately, I’m not 20 yet so all I could drink was Soda and water. I don’t remember the name of the bar, but I friends said they have some of the best drinks they’ve ever had.

The southern part of Sapporo at night really reminds me of Ho Chi Minh city ( my hometown). All the crowded streets, the flashing lights seem to bring the city to life. We went for a walk after leaving the bar. Although it was quite late, we decided to go to a nearby karaoke. I love singing (although I’m not really good at it). We sang for 2 hours, mostly English songs. I tried to sing a Japanese song called “なんでもないや” from the movie “君の名は“, it’s my most favorite song.

I miss my family back in Vietnam but I don’t feel homesick because I’ve made friends with really nice people from Sapporo, and although I have only been here for 1 month, I think I’ve already fell in love with this amazing city.

Avery (Vietnam)

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by chitchatcafe | 2017-11-01 16:27 | 英会話 プライベート レッスン | Comments(0)

Changes   

I’ve finally started my lessons, only a few Japanese classes this week, but full fledged first semester starts from next week. I am a little bit excited about it but nothing abnormal actually to my surprise. I thought I would go crazy with excitement, but I just feel normal about it. Maybe that’s what growing up is, you just feel normal about stuff.


A lot of developments have been happening in my life too, including me and other people, countries at some cases even, so I feel lots of things happening at once, a pace that is little bit too fast for my taste. But I guess during rainy days a good thumbnail to remember is, “Good stuff passes. But bad stuff passes too.”


Speaking of rainy days, what’s with Sapporo these days? The weather was perfectly fine up until last week, now it’s just all hell breaks loose. Yesterday night, was so cold, I actually had to wait in a konbini for a couple of minutes to warm up, and then go back to my home. Hokkaido is just one crazy place. It’s April now I mean, not even the start of it, it’s Mid April, and you still can’t go out without a scarf. And I bought a bike you see, I was super excited to ride it and not be late for school and stuff, but now, whenever I try to ride it, it’s either raining, or a wind that’s so cold and strong it just stops me on my tracks. Calm down a tad bit more, Hokkaido my dear? You’re hurting me, literally. (Note: It’s snowing at this very moment I am writing this.)


I went to a football game the other day with a friend and his kid, between FC Tokyo and Consadole Sapporo which the Sapporo won. As I’m living in Sapporo, I was like “Go ConSa!” the entire match. I guess I’ll go see more games from now on when I have the time. (And the money, aren’t those tickets a bit too much expensive??) Also after the game, we went to a yakisoba place, and guess who did we meet? The game announcer for that nights game! I heard him speaking at the game, and then just casually came to eat yakisoba at the place we were. That was a nice coincidence.


So yeah. Life in Sapporo, I’ve gotten used to it more or less now, some stuff doesn’t excite me as it used to, some stuff I like even more compared to the time I first came here. Life is fun here, I like it. Maybe full of hardships, lots of stuff to think about and lots of homeworks but always, always fun.

Dee (Turkey)



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by chitchatcafe | 2017-04-13 17:10 | 英会話 プライベート レッスン | Comments(0)

Spring is coming!   

Hey everyone!

I stepped outside the other day and I finally realised that it's mid-March and winter is coming to an end. I imagine many of you are very excited for the arrival of spring, meaning you can cast aside your worries about shovelling so much snow!

Although it isn't my favourite season, winter is still one of my favourite parts of the year, espcially here in Sapporo. Walking in heavy snowfall, the amazing feeling when you finally sit down and enjoy some warm food and the frequent events Sapporo is world famous for, all of these things have made this the most enjoyable winter so far in my life.

It's strange thinking back and realising the snow started falling all the way back in October and, after a brief period of time with no snowfall at all, December kicked off with record amounts of snow! I've lived in Sapporo before, but waking up and seeing all that snow on the ground still managed to surprise me.

As for my highlights this winter?
Going to Sapporo Factory with friends to eat and see the Christmas tree and decorations back in December. Although it wasn't too special, it was very nostalgic for me having lived in Sapporo four years ago and it's very pretty once it gets dark outside.

For New Year's, an old friend from Sapporo University came from Australia to visit me and we went all the way to the middle of nowhere (Fukagawa!) to eat some ramen made by one of our friends. Probably the most expensive ramen I've eaten to date as the total of the food and travel exceeded 7000 yen!

And last but definitely not the least, the Snow Festival! Every day after work I would walk through the festival and just enjoy the atmosphere and I'm sure I'll never forget the Trump/PPAP snow sculpture!

I hope you all had a good winter despite all the snow and cold weather and I look forward to seeing you all in the Spring!

Michael/Waffle/ワっちゃん

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by chitchatcafe | 2017-03-21 17:09 | 英会話 プライベート レッスン | Comments(0)

Field Trip to Tomakomai   

Hey everyone! How was your summer? Personally, I'm super happy that the fall weather is finally here. I'm sick of sweating all the time! Of course, it was hotter in New York, but everything is air conditioned there. Here, if feels like I'm always walking from one hot room to the next. Anyway...

Last weekend, I decided to make the most of the beautiful weather and go skateboarding with my friends. I'm not a very good skateboarder. I've been snowboarding for years, but the area I grew up in didn't have any concrete so I never learned to skateboard.

My friend was actually supposed to teach me last year, but he never did so a few months ago I decided to give it a shot anyway. The rainy weather kept me inside for awhile, but other than that I've been practicing every day! It's just as fun as snowboarding (but a little scarier)!

Back to my weekend. My friend and I drove down to Tomakomai and met another friend. Three dudes, skateboards, and a boring town. Lol. Why Tomakomai? Well, my one friend lives there, and he told us there is really good skate park that nobody ever goes to near his house. In Sapporo, everything is busy on Sunday, so we decided to take the trip and check it out.

Of course, as luck would have it, they were hosting some kind of event at the park when we arrived. So we drove around until we found an empty parking lot and skated there for awhile. The concrete was actually pretty smooth--way better than in front of my share house, which is where I usually practice.

We skated there for a few hours and then decided to get some food. My buddy, Shoma, and I are both big fans of ramen and soup curry (we almost always get one or the other every time we see each other). We went to this place called Yamato and I had really good miso ramen (my favorite).

After a big meal of ramen, Gyoza, and rice, I figured everyone would want to go home, but instead we decided to see if the skate park had emptied out. Luckily, it had, so we boarded for another few hours before making the long trek back to Sapporo. It was a pretty awesome day, but after 7 hours or so of skateboarding, I'm pretty sore. I guess I need to practice more often.
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by chitchatcafe | 2016-09-13 15:09 | 英会話 プライベート レッスン | Comments(0)

UFOs and other fishy experiences!   

As a European who had never set a foot on the Asian continent before laying down my hat in Japan 3 years ago, I can tell you that going food shopping is like an endless treasure hunt in some unknown galaxies.
Most discoveries are harmless and usually pretty satisfying. I could name few of them : the wobbly dodgy colored konnyaku, the slimmy stinky shiokara, the stringy brown-yellowish natto, or the soft tubular weird looking chikuwa. I think that one of the most mysterious meal I ever had was Oden, the first month I was in Japan. This great typical Japanese dish is probably one of the strangest looking one for foreigners. We can only tell about the egg, any other delicacies are UFOs...Unknown Floating Objects.
This is to say that in our european countries, we barely know any other Japan than Sushi Japan, or Ramen Japan for the connoisseur.

However, there's one poisonous UFO found in the ocean that we know about and we fear : the puffer fish, or commonly known as Fugu. Ask any foreigners coming to Japan : they either don’t want to eat it because it’s dangerous or either want to it it because it is dangerous. Whatever is the reason, it is a hit! I had tried to taste it on my journey to Osaka when my family visited me but I was promptly stopped by my beloved mother and aunt, as I could possibly die and, as a result, end their well-deserved holidays in Japan.

However, I didnt give up the idea and this year, I decided to challenge that cuttie face and head to SanPiers aquarium where a special Fugu event was held. After this first encounter of the Fugu kind, I must say that I was even more eager to have a bite! And here came my luck a week ago : a trial set of 5 small frozen fugu from the shop!

It’s been a week now and as you can see, I'm still alive!

See you soon chit chatters!

Claire (France)

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by chitchatcafe | 2015-02-13 16:28 | 英会話 プライベート レッスン | Comments(0)

Parks adventures   

It's been a while since my last post. I hope you're enjoying the summer where ever you are! As you know I'm taking a break and I'm actually posting from the Far East of Hokkaido!

Anyway this time I'd like to share with you my new interest for parks and playgrounds in Japan.I don't know if it's only in Hokkaido but recently, cycling a lot around town during the day, I came to realise that there's at least a playground per block! You may not realise it but that's a lot compared to what you have abroad!
Anyway, being busy at work and daytime being way to hot lately, I've started wandering at night when temperatures are cooler and streets more quiet, looking for the coolest playground in town. Have I found it or not, it’s hard to tell since there are a thousands of them in Sapporo but I can tell that I had forgotten how much fun playgrounds were! Kids are lucky! See-saws, swings, slides, merry-go-rounds, climbing nets or walls and so on. But the best structures by far are the zip-lines! There’s nothing more thrilling than hopping on a rope hanging on one side of a pole and letting yourself sliding down the other side! Of course there are many other new structures in a hundred different designs but the zip-lines, trust me, are the best!

My quest for the Ultimate Playground is far from being over but if you wander at night you may find me somewhere sliding down a rope having the best time ever!

Claire (France)

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by chitchatcafe | 2014-08-02 17:20 | 英会話 プライベート レッスン

Sakura   

Hello guys. The time of barbecue and cherry blossoms is upon us! Well, it kind of passed already but it was exciting none the less. This year we didn't do much barbecuing, opting instead to spend a quiet weekend in Nakajima park. Previous years we always went to Maruyama park, so I never knew that Nakajima also has a lot of nice cherry blossoms. I am attaching some pictures if you are not convinced. Anyways, me and my wife decided that the smell of charred meat and the noise of countless drunk people is not as desirable now as it was a few years ago, so Nakajima park it was. I guess we are getting old, hehe.

Now onto some not so good news. This is, unfortunately, going to be my last blog entry, as I am moving on to work on other projects that require my attention full time. It has been a pleasure meeting all of you and I hope I see you around Sapporo. If you see me on the street - don't be a stranger, stop and say "Hi".

Slavi (Bulgaria)
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by chitchatcafe | 2014-05-27 15:52 | 英会話 プライベート レッスン

And in comes Spring…..   

Hi Everyone!

Here is my first ever Chit Chat blog. As the newest member of the Chit Chat crew I thought I’d give you a little more info about me.
I am second in a family of 4 kids. I have an older sister, a younger sister and a younger brother. They are all back in Australia getting on with their lives (my older sister is about to have her second child which is very exciting) while I hang out in Japan doing whatever I can to avoid the pressures and responsibilities of growing older.

This month is very exciting for me. As you know from my staff page I am a massive film fan and studied film at university. This month I’m investing in my own video camera so I am pumped to start putting some of the scripts and stories I have written into the visual spectrum I intended them for.
It’s also spring time, which means I can ride my bicycle to and from work and can start to work off a bit of the winter insulation I have gained (that’s a nice way of saying I got fat :P ).

I hope everyone else is as excited about the warm weather as I am. I’m sad to see my snowboard being packed away until next season, but the BBQ will be getting cleaned and prepared soon, which makes me very happy.
Maybe we can get together for a BBQ sometime soon!
Time for some fun in the sun!!!

Pat (Australia)

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by chitchatcafe | 2014-04-10 16:14 | 英会話 プライベート レッスン

Final months in Japan   

Hello again everyone!

I hope you are all doing well. As you might already know, I will be returning to Australia with my husband at the end of this month. So these last couple of months I've spent preparing for the long trip... Packing and preparing documents..

As for my time in Japan, it was truly wonderful and I'm sure I will miss it after a couple of months being back in Australia. Many people have asked me what are the things I will miss the most after I go back, and the 2 things that come to my mind straight away are: convenience stores and Hokkaido food!!

CCC also was a big part of this year and I will miss both the teachers and the students dearly!! I had an awesome time there!

So if I will not see you in the next couple of weeks, stay safe, healthy and happy! I hope I can see you all again some day :))

Cheers,

Maria (Rus/Aus)

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by chitchatcafe | 2014-04-08 17:00 | 英会話 プライベート レッスン

Winter holidays   

As most of you guys know, I spent my winter holidays in Okinawa. You may wonder why Okinawa in the middle of winter. In fact, if it was not for my dad I would have waited spring to take a short trip there... But, you see, I had a deal with my dad : if he were to come to Japan I had to take him to Okinawa. And so off we went to Okinawa for almost 2 weeks! And mind me it was fantastic! The weather, of course was much warmer than here, and looking at the sea was like looking at the blue sky, but what I enjoyed the most, apart far niente obviously, was the food!

Before I left, I told few of my friends and few of my students that I was going to Okinawa and all of them had warned me that Okinawa cuisine was "special ", "very different from the rest of Japan". I couldn't really get it and thus didn't know what to expect. Actually, when you talk about Hokkaido cuisine the same description applies though usually people add "delicious" or "very fresh " which give a pleasant, if not mouth watering , picture of it.

I must say that Okinawa cuisine is different from the rest of Japan but nonetheless succulent! I absolutely loved it! The vegetable, the meat, the desserts not full of fresh cream ( cf my post on desserts in Hokkaido)! I would eat that every day! And I did eat pig feet and pig ears! Mind me it was not the first time since pig feet in France is a famous dish particularly tasty!

Anyway I had a tremendous trip for my eyes as well as for my tongue and I hope to go back there! I must confess though that I missed Soup curry and hokkaido's sushi! First thing I ate I soon as I got back!

Japanese food as usual is amazing!

Claire (France)

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by chitchatcafe | 2014-02-13 17:21 | 英会話 プライベート レッスン