chris vs. the arctic

chris: 72 // the arctic: 47

Surprise Vacation!

Vacation days (nenkyu) in Japan are rarely used by the Japanese. It's seen as not good work ethic to take time off. Foreigners, however, usually take every opportunity to use their nenkyu.

I had the right to take 20 days off every year for the past two years, and I was close to doing so. As of Monday, I had 3 days left, so I was going to ask for the last couple of days of my contract off. My house needs cleaning and my bags need to be packed.

As I was handing in my forms, my old supervisor asked me why I was taking so little nenkyu. I told her I had only 3 days left, so I was taking as much as I was allowed. Then she says the most golden sentence: "No, you have 11 days of nenkyu left."

Huh? How is that possible? I had taken a lot of nenkyu in the past two years. I kept track. 2 days for Beijing, 1 day for Hiroshima, 10 days for Thailand... I definitely only had 3 days left.

To prove to me that I had a significantly larger number of days off, she showed me the "big black book" -- the attendance record for all the teachers. It was written there on top of the sheet: 22 days this year.

It suddenly came back to me that the board of education had decided to give me extra nenkyu. Back in December, my supervisor told me it was very rare and special. I should be thankful. I completely brushed it away at the time as being a communication error. I mean, really, why would they give me more time off? I'm already hardly here! But apparently they had. Here it was, in black and white.

Yes yes yes yes yes yes yes yesssss!!!

Now I'm taking off almost all of my remaining time here! After the 20th of July, I'll never have to come back to work ever again! (My last official day is August 1st.)

My new problem is spending that time wisely. I could just lounge around my apartment, cleaning and packing. Or I could go to the beach everyday. Something better has come up, however. Andy and I are going to go to Tokyo Disneyland! It has been on my 'List of Things To Do in Japan' for a while, and now I can cross it off!

I think I may also go to Nara and Kyoto. I haven't been to Nara before, and I heard it's the best. I might as well be cultural if I'm going to be consumeristic.

Only 5 more days of work!!
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On July 13, 2006, Blogger Ms. World said:


On July 14, 2006, Blogger Sista K said:

I'm so jealous...except...I'm leaving for Tokyo in 8 hours. And I'm going Disney Sea tomorrow. And sumo on Sunday!

But 22 days?? They need to talk to my BOE!

But seriously, how did you go from 3 to 11?? That's a huge jump.    

On July 27, 2006, Blogger mm-team said:

Hi, Enjoyed your post!    

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