I finally had some significant time for reading today, so I read 20 pages to finish this week’s part for かがみの孤城 🪞 Week 22 and stuff happened. That did mean that there was a lot of unfamiliar vocabulary, though, so it did go a little slow…
Ended on a pretty good cliffhanger as well: Will Kokoro be able to get back to the castle? What will happen to the other kids?
No context combined with casual language - hahaha, nice try…
Oh, that’s interesting! I had mixed experiences with something like that so far because what I struggle with most is missing or forgotten vocab, so I don’t know how much it would speed me up on average, but if you know most of the words, then it will probably give you a speed boost because it’s easier just to listen than to read yourself, I guess.
For the pirates, I’m making good progress. In chapter 2, I was getting quite the “Famous Five” vibes somehow - big adventure, big excitement, and we get a lot of education about British history for free because one person asks a lot of questions about it, and another provides smart-ass explanations So right now it feels pretty much like a history book about Britain. Which is not bad in itself, just - unexpected I think I’m getting closer to the point where the theory turns into practice, and we might get a bit more action, but first I need to sleep.
Oh, and yesterday I also read this week’s part of がばいばあちゃん - this went by really quickly! I guess this is the most lightweight Intermediate Club pick ever…
Yeah it’s definitely mixed for me in a sense too. I hit unknown words and get all mixed up pretty easily. But it fairly regularly helps to either urge me along in speed if it’s a line that is simple enough, or it’ll feed me the kanji readings I somewhat know but would have to spend a few seconds recalling for those kanji I still need to see a lot more.
Of course, following discussions of my speed, I was a lot slower today, haha. It’s partially my own fault for doing that thing you shouldn’t where some grammar bit stuck out as odd to me and I ended up spending way more time on a sentence I already understood than it warranted, haha. All to mostly come to the conclusion that my brain just had one of those times it flags something as off when in other contexts I wouldn’t even think twice about it. Still, I learned, maybe In the end I pushed myself to not stop until I hit a little over 6000 characters, giving increasing my goal a shot, and I think it was a good idea. Still a solid day of reading.
What can I say besides what I say every day? This route continues to be a fun adventure. Today I learned, from an offhand reference, about the オオサンショウウオ (Japanese giant salamander). They’re indeed giant, but kinda weirdly cute. Also when I was starting Summer Pockets I talked about not knowing what a Boston Bag was until learning about it in Japanese… well today, the new bag to learn about is a ポシェット, a pochette. I mean… I’ve certainly seem them; they’re just small bags on a cord. But cultured enough to differentiate bags like that? Couldn’t be me.
The kid flashbacks are pretty cute. That’s about all I’ve got for now! Hoping I’ll wrap it up in a few days at this rate, but its larger scale pacing/structure is rather unlike the others so it’s harder to have a feel for it.
I read chapter 55 of Yotsuba, which is the final chapter of Volume 8.
The page of her trying to get tabasco sauce out of the bottle was very relatable.
I’m trying to decide whether to start the next volume straight away, or finish off one of the other non-bookclub books that I’m part way through first since I’m reading quite a lot of different things at the same time right now!
As I’m already done with this week’s book clubs, I read some takagi-san to fill the time. Got it from 39% to 58%. This took… I’m not sure how much time, I kinda opened my stopper, stared at it for a while and then forgot to start it…
I played more Zero Escape this morning! Things are still absolutely wild. I tried to play more a little bit ago but my brain said no, so I tried reading something else and my brain still said no so I think we’re done for the day Tomorrow’s a new day!
Ahhh congrats, that’s super awesome!!
Ah yes committment to the bit aw that sounds super cute though!
(Also I super relate on the whole VN vs books thing, every time I pick up a novel I’m just like “but video game has game2text… and voice acting” lmao, I definitely feel like having the lines basically read to me makes a big difference)
Pochettes!! AKA the things I only know from Animal Crossing and they’re the absolute cutest so obviously I wanted all of them
It’s funny, I didn’t even think about this being an issue with twitter at all, haha, because most of the Japanese tweets on my feed are about wrestling, and context there is never an issue for me. Or at least, it’s roughly the same as English wrestling tweets. Usually wrestlers tweet about shows they just did, ongoing storylines, book/merch promotions, other wrestlers they’re friends with, etc., and the fan accounts I follow react to stuff that happens in the shows and other news.
So if you’re keyed into the same world that they are, the context is very straightforward. Even before I knew any Japanese, I could somewhat muddle through with autotranslate, haha. It’s fun because you’ll get Japanese fans tweeting about American wrestling, American fans tweeting about Japanese wrestling, people all around the world reacting at the same time to huge announcements, and Japanese-speaking, English-speaking, and Spanish-speaking wrestlers all interacting with each other with varying degrees of proficiency in the other languages.
So maybe the trick to making the most out of twitter is to pick a particular narrow field that you spend a lot of time with haha so that you’re reading and watching the same stuff that they are, and you therefore have a shared base of understanding to work from.
This book is wild stuff. It only just started and it’s already managed to be bizarre, hilarious, scary, and heartbreaking. I guess part of me assumed a book about a boy during WWII would be somewhat drab and educational, but it’s turning out to be a rollercoaster.
Along the same note, I’d recommend following fanartists of some media that you like, especially ones who draw comics. Short comics have really helped me learn a lot (especially conversational stuff and descriptions) and also improved my handwriting deciphering. You can also pick up typical sentence patterns that certain stereotypical characters use.
Also, because the content is so short, it’s easy to start and stop.
Started vol 4! It’s just about 200 pages. I had hoped to maybe finish this one by Thursday because Golden Week is nearly here and I’ll be busy, but I might not succeed. That’s alright. I’m on pace if I read the same number of pages every day. I’ll just be hella busy though this week, so I’ll try not to be hard on myself.
Augh, it’s difficult to catch up on sleep when your body refuses to fall asleep early yet still insists on waking early. Anyway, I read more in English than in Japanese today, but I did manage to read ch 5 of 星だけ.
Update with commentary:
We open up with Sora wondering why he hated it so much (hearing that Kengo’s dating Shiori) as he wakes up the next morning… at Kengo’s place. Apparently he didn’t make it all that far last night since he was still pretty drunk and when Kengo caught up to him, he brought him to his place and set him up on the couch again.
So Kengo and Shiori actually aren’t dating, it’s just that a year or so ago, there was a persistent customer after her so they started pretending, and people outside of the café staff don’t know. After Kengo asks him if he likes Shiori, Sora finally realizes what his feelings toward Kengo are!! Kengo realizes too and tries to kiss him, but Sora pushes him away and flees again. Yeah, he ain’t prepared to deal with that just yet. 早まった, indeed. Ah man.
No but Sora’s face!! When he realized, he tried to hide his face with the blanket, but Kengo pulled it away, and his expression!! I definitely don’t blame Kengo for trying to kiss him then, I’d wanna kiss him too.
Three weeks into the new year, Sora still hasn’t gone to the café because he’s been busy with tests and assignments, but he wants to drink Kengo’s coffee… but he knows that all of those are just excuses. He doesn’t want to see him because he still doesn’t know how to deal with his feelings (or, more probably, has been avoiding dealing with them), but he wants to see him because he likes him and likes spending time with him. Then that evening, Kengo’s waiting for him at the station entrance to give him a collection of past exam questions, but it’s half just pretext to see him. He asks him to come by the shop again and promises he won’t ambush him or anything again. (Ah ha, I’m pretty sure at least some part of him wants you to, though.)
Some vocab of note
敵わない (かなわない) [い-adjective] no match for. I’m pretty sure this was my first time seeing it in kanji. I kinda really feel like I shoulda guessed the reading since I do know the word, but I guess I’m just not at that level yet. Also, I never realized it was an adjective, although now that I think of it, it makes sense.
I didn’t read for…2 days? 3 days? I was traveling via train and scenery took precedence over reading on day 1 and utter exhaustion (from not being able to sleep on the train) on days 2 + 3. I did read a handful of pages (10ish?) of 遅刻してきた幽霊 today.
I’ve tried to catch up on the posts here, but as I have less time at the moment sorry for no individual replies!
ギリギリセーフ。Managed to read a level-two reader before clock struck midnight. That’s how Cinderella goes, right?
The story I read was about a Brazilian folk tale. A woman wants to meet the goddess of the moon so bad, she eventually mistakes the moon’s reflection in a lake for the goddess and drowns. The goddess then turns her into a type of water lily called “Victoria regia” or VIctoria amazonica. I imagine the plant had a different name pre-colonization, but that’s the name that was given in the story.
I also managed to finish my essay and schedule a lesson with my tutor to review it! Excited to check that off my list of MEXT application prep finally.
Progress on Tadoku graded readers
44 / 44 level-zeros
12 / 12 level-ones
4 /10 level-twos
x / 18 level-threes
Time: 27 minutes
Finished: 7 pages
Started the next Jack Jeanne short story 巣立ち, so far this one feels a lot more difficult there were a lot of words I didn’t know. Also finished volume 4 of マグメル, this volume had more background on some of the other workers at Mag Mell, and Koutarou helping a young boy who found some oarfish washed up on shore. Found out oarfish are called 竜宮の使い in Japanese which is much cooler than oarfish lol. Then a little at the end about the overarching story that really makes me wonder what that character is doing and where he could possibly be.
Some pages I liked
This volume had some really pretty chapter cover pages.
Just a few this time because I have way too many.
ハダカイワシ lantern fish (any fish of family Myctophidae, esp. Watase’s lanternfish, Diaphus watasei) (naked sardine?)
竜宮の使い （リュウグウノツカイ）king of herrings (Regalecus glesne); oarfish; ribbonfish
テズルモズル basket star (any brittlestar of family Euryalina); basket fish
ミツマタヤリウオ Pacific blackdragon (Idiacanthus antrostomus) (this one looks pretty freaky)
コウモリダコ Vampire squid
既成概念 （きせいがいねん）stereotype; preconceived idea; preconceived notion
もれなく without omission; in full
仇 （あだ）resentment; enmity; grudge
やたら indiscriminately; blindly; at random; recklessly; thoughtlessly; excessively; profusely
Big same! Most of the Japanese accounts I follow on Twitter are making tokimeki memorial girls side 4 fancomics or talking about it and they are usually very accessible and fun cos I know the characters etc.