Haiku reflections on Japan

Renshuu refurbishment

Change is mostly a

good and positive thing but

in this case it ain’t.


Well I visited Renshuu the other day after a week or so away (see last post) and I found they had changed the format of the site.  I’m kind of annoyed because I can’t find where I left off!!    It’s neater alright, ironically, but it was much easier to go back to where you left off with the old format.  I hope they’re not going to mess around with it any further.   I don’t want it going down the Memrise sinkhole route!

I watched a documentary this weekend morning about sinkholes – yeah fascinating you say but in fact it was very interesting – after what happened in Hakata that time (see previous post). This was mostly US-focused, particularly Louisiana and Florida.   Sinkholes are far more dangerous than you would think.  I wondered while watching it if it was such a good idea that the Hakata cities authorities rebuilt the street so quickly that time.

On a human level, it is amazing how greedy some housing developers are – not just in America but everywhere-  that they know full well that they are building housing developments on sink-hole vulnerable plots of land and yet it is the eventual home owners who are left to deal with the, often tragic, consequences of it.  And how they even get to development stage is amazing.  So it’s not just property developers at fault (but city authorities who allow them to go ahead without proper assessments of the land).   Real estate agents are also guilty of hiding the truth about properties they are in charge of selling.  Anyway, not only might the homeowners lose their lives but also the value of their house which they find they can’t sell on because of this geological feature that no one can do much about, and that they were knowingly left unaware of.  so they are doomed to stay there.   Some public authorities have special sinkhole zone maps people can refer to if they want to research an area in which they wish to buy a house which is something but not all public authorities have these.  Unless you’re eyeing up an area already known for sinkholes (in which case why?), it’s probably not on your list of things to research when thinking of buying a house!  The documentary also featured people who are aware of sinkholes in their area but due to technology that will warn them of anything that will ‘activate’, so to speak, a threatening sinkhole and/or a genuine love of their community, when they could otherwise afford to move, decide to stay put despite the risk.

Well, I’ll try to think of something less grim for my next post : (









Haiku reflections on Japan

See ye later Memrise


There once was a site called Memrise

which when I started was like the sunrise

but it then went to town

on being a clown

so I thought I’d go elsewhere to memorize

Yeah I thought I’d start with a Limerick this time to express my opinion of Memrise which I haven’t visited in over 2 months or so.   I just don’t enjoy it anymore, mostly because the founders have really gone to town on dragging it down with their clowning around with the format.   There were some nice fellow learners on it at times.  I might return out of curiosity (to see how much I ‘have to’ water because it keeps bringing up words you know you have long memorised for watering) but elsewhere my Japanese perfecting adventure continues.

Thanks all the same Memrise – it was (mostly) nice while it lasted.

International or other matters

Decluttering college notes … the final frontier!!

What to do with notes 

and essays you piled up but

have not reviewed much?


The last real stage of my decluttering is almost over.    If I ever decide to move I’ll have a very quick packing session … woo hoo!!  I was going through my college notes (I studied languages and my course included other modules as well) aiming to get rid of as much as possible as they take up way too much space and for what?  So,  I’ve been busy over the last few days, work or study aside, in another huge cull.  I successfully whittled my four years of Japanese down to one small box file though I have some extra notes from study I have since done myself or with a private tutor.  4 years into one small box is good work I think.  If only I could get my notes on the other two languages down to that amount.    I really should chuck it all out but some of it is really interesting to read on its own merits not just because I once had to for college, stuff on the cultural side of things relating to each language or country concerned.  Yes I can find it on the internet but all the same if I can cull it down to that size box for everything I think I’ll refer to it more if I do want to find out or read something.  Who wants to be looking at a computer or phone screen any more than necessary anyway?    It’s bad for you!!

Just as I was thinking when culling my photos ‘what was I thinking taking that!’ I came across a lot of essays I wrote when I was much younger and found myself laughing despite myself at what I wrote.   The stuff I wrote.  Honestly.   I got decent marks for a lot of them though and so I hesitate to throw them away. Certain tests where I achieved really good results also remain in there.   I was never the highest achieving student so I like to remind myself of my high points, even if, like the photos, they’re in the past.  I also have kept a few essays where I got not so good feedback, but not as much of course ; )

I think Marie Kondo and other ‘experts’ might tell me to go further and bin all of it, apart from those results that made me happy.    I’ll think about it.

Anyone else have decluttering woes or even joys to share?