I had another wonderful class at kindergarten today. Actually it was fine till the very end when I picked up my heavy bag (you can never have enough props) in one hand and my CD player in the other hand and went to waddle out of the classroom. It was then that a 4 year old gave me a "kancho". Now for anyone living in Japan that has taught small children I am sure you know what I am talking about, but for those that don't know a "kancho" is literally an enema. Now don't worry - he didn't get his hands up that far! The act of small children giving people a "kancho" is now so common that I discovered that it is now described in some dictionaries as "prank where the anal region of another person is poked with index fingers". Now to me this behaviour is totally unacceptable, but here in Japan it is surprisingly common and I have even seen teachers at kindergartens encouraging it and most people will just laugh if they see a child doing it to someone else. Of course I told the little boy concerned that it was far from appropriate and may have lost him as a friend for life, but it is one thing that I really can't stand! I can put up with being hit, kicked and called an old witch, but I won't put up with being poked up the bum - especially when both my hands are full so I can't defend myself! I wonder sometimes if this is just a Japanese thing or if it is actually common in other countries and that it just us "kiwis" who find it offensive. I doubt it, but I would be interested in hearing opinions from people from other countries on this so when I lash out at the teachers next time I can quote from other perspectives too.Hope you are all having a "non poking up the bottom" day.
Tuesday, June 09, 2009
New family members
A few weeks ago we had a pair of swallows come and check out our house. They checked every different eave we have and finally decided on the perfect place to build their nest.... right above our front door! In Japan swallows are supposed to bring you good luck and prosperity so most business people are very happy if a swallow makes its nest in their premises. Me... I'm happy that it gives me something extra to show visitors, but the mess they make while building their nest is more than a little annoying. It also means I can't leave the front door open for long - unless I want some uninvited visitors... has happened more than once already! It was actually really interesting watching them make the nest - quite a feat really. They basically just slowly collect mud and straw and stick it onto the wall - making their required shape. It took them a couple of weeks, but it seems like they have finished it now. My children are looking forward to them laying some eggs so we can watch the rest of their life cycle.