Monday, March 23, 2020

Life Post: More of the New Normal

It's been nearly two weeks since my last post, but not much has changed here that I can update you about. Future plans of mine have been altered thanks to COVID-19, but there were reasons why I was refraining from talking about them before: there was still a possibility they would change. And now they have.

The future feels quite a bit uncertain now. Americans have been told to go back home or stay where they are, and I've chosen to stay where I am.

Daily life here in the Japanese countryside mostly feels the same as usual. Some people are choosing to stay home, but far more seem to be going about their daily lives. I'm still working. There was one case here a while ago, and it's still the only case reported here. But I do feel anxious about what might happen next.

To everyone else: I hope you're safe and doing what you can to protect yourselves and other people. While we can't possibly predict what will happen next, I hope everyone stays safe.

Wednesday, March 11, 2020

Life Post: Where Do I Begin?

I don't want this to become a thing where I constantly talk about preparing to post more and then nothing comes of it. I mentioned before that I was trying a new way to schedule my time so I could post more, and I guess I have been posting a little bit more, but it doesn't feel like it.

This isn't going to be the happiest of posts, but it is going to be a very vague one. Since the beginning of March (or probably earlier than that actually, especially with the cold I got at the end of February) some stuff started happening that has made writing and other things difficult. It's hard to talk about this more specifically partially because I'm talking about a million different things that all happened at once and also because a lot of it is things that I don't want to share on the internet right now for various reasons. (A lot of it will be stuff I talk about later.)

Everything happening with the coronavirus is probably the background noise of it all. I don't think I'm overly panicking about the news, but I am paying attention to how the situation develops, which means reading about a lot of people's anxiety. If it were just the virus, I'd be mentally fine right now, but having that as a constant stream behind all of the other stressors playing out right now has been a lot for me. Because of that, I'm trying to significantly cut back on how much I read about the coronavirus, but that's difficult as it means I can't even go on Twitter anymore.

I don't want to make it sound like everything is doom and gloom. A lot of the things stressing me out are actually good things that I can't talk about yet because I'm not sure which things will pan out and which won't.

Actually, having quite a few good things happening alongside some bad things is probably making this period of time more challenging for me as I'm never sure if I should be more upset/worried or happy/excited. It just makes everything feel weird.

One bit of good news I can share though is that I've signed up for season eight of the Quidditch League fanfiction competition. I've been invited to join before as people I know from other fanfiction forums always participate. And I've wanted to join, but I've avoided it in the past because I was worried about time. After reading the beginning of this post, you might be wondering why I'd choose now to actually do it. Well, I think I needed something positive, especially since most of the good stuff I mentioned before has a chance of not actually happening. I know this competition will be fun because I already know many of the people involved, and I need something like this to help get my mind off of everything else. So, here's to a good season for the Appleby Arrows!

I'll try to keep you updated, especially with good news as it becomes more concrete and easier to talk about.

Sunday, March 1, 2020

Life Post: Coronavirus in Japan

Anyone reading this will probably have some idea of what's been happening in Japan recently. There's been a spike in coronavirus cases, and people here are worried. It's a little surreal to have all of his happening around me.

The US has issued a travel warning for Japan and is telling anyone who comes to be cautious. I've received emails from the US Embassy warning me to register with them so they know my location in case US citizens are evacuated. It's one of the only things anyone is talking about.

We're not having kids classes at our school for two weeks after the Japanese government called for all elementary, junior high, and high school classes be closed for the month of March. We are still teaching adult classes, but I feel like everyone is on edge, and it makes me feel anxious too, even though I know there's no use worrying about it at this point.

This weekend I'm doing my best to just relax. I'm not going out except to go grocery shopping (and put something in the mail) because of how anxious everyone is, and the plan was to focus on just about anything except the virus. But that's not exactly what's happened. I guess there's still tomorrow.