05 May, 2016

This Odd-not-Golden Week

This is a street near us that we travel along to go to so
many places. Today I walked along here to meet my
colleague for coffee. It was a gorgeous day, even
close to hot, especially if you were in the sun.
A common question at this time of year is: "So did you go away for Golden Week?"

We're just coming to the end of what's known as Golden Week. It isn't strictly a week, but is a cluster of four public holidays: April 29 and May 3–5. It's a popular time to travel and often the longest period many Japanese people take off from their jobs. The other two popular times to take holidays are at New Year and Obon in early August.

But alas not for those associated with CAJ. Basically CAJ doesn't pay much attention to Japanese public holidays when setting its calendar, which can be tough for those families who are more integrated in the Japanese system than our family is. For example, we had kids in both systems at one time and it was hard to find time outside of summer and New Year to take away as a family.

So the holidays this year looked like this for us:

Friday: public holiday but usual school day for CAJ.
Saturday: usual day, we were at a Track and Field meet.
Sunday: usual day, we were at church, then resting in the afternoon.
Monday: usual day of business for Japan, but CAJ had a public holiday. We hosted some two-yearly mission medicals at our house. Which meant people in and out all day as they saw some doctors from Singapore.
Tuesday: public holiday, a student-free day at CAJ (i.e. David was at work). Our eldest had an external Physics exam too.
Wednesday: public holiday, a usual school day at CAJ.

I always admire the gardens that some Tokyo-ites
manage to create despite limited space. This one
is along the street above. Simple, yet beautiful.
Thursday (today): public holiday, a usual school day at CAJ, our eldest had an external Calculus exam, which meant he had half a day off school.

So you can see that it's been a bit of an odd week all round. I managed to get some computer work done on Friday, Tuesday, and Wednesday. But no, we didn't "get away" to do anything!

I've had an unusual day. I met one of my magazine team members for an early coffee and then drove her to her next stop (which took about an hour and a half). It was a great time of getting to know one another a bit better, which is really important in the virtual team that I run from my dining room! It was a rare opportunity because she lives five hours away in Osaka and we aren't often in the same vicinity.

When I got back from that I had a meeting at school to analyse how Thrift Shop went and decide on any changes necessary for the next one in October. It was a better meeting than I expected and I was able to get home by 1.40 and met my son who was having a late lunch after his exam. It was good to chat with him for a while, especially about the future (he graduates from high school in just 13 months and has some decisions to make).

But I haven't had much time to sit at my desk and work. Alas school is now out and I expect that our youngest will be home in the next 40 minutes. I can usually get some things done here after he's home these days, but I won't get another concentrated time of work here until tomorrow. The challenges of working from home!

What is waiting for me to do at my desk?
  • managing the magazine which includes a bunch of little jobs at this stage in the flow of the magazine: 
    • I've got designers starting to work on the Spring issue, so answering questions from them,
    • the deadline for the Summer issue was Saturday, so I'm chasing writers and editors, 
    • I'm doing some of the article editing work which includes interacting with some writers,
    • answering various email queries that come my way, and
    • I'm trying to tweak a management system asana.com which is supposed to be helping us keep a track of our magazine work. It has some problems that I'm trying to figure out, but it isn't easy.
  • less urgent, but coming up is the mobilisation table for conference in June that I wrote about here.
  • another even less urgent-but-needing-to-get-done are follow-up assignments from the workshop I went to at the end of February. Those are due in August.
What's your week looked like?


MOM2_4 said...

I have often wondered why CAJ doesn't take Golden Week off. Time off as a family is hard to come by, so having school during Golden Week seems anti-family to me.

We scheduled the whole week off for our English school, but hubby & the kids still had university classes / school Monday and again tomorrow. Hubby also had a volunteer class at the hospital yesterday (don't ask me why). A couple of park outings have happened, as well as, some odds & ends around the house. Nothing exciting, but it has been a nice break nonetheless.

Wendy said...

What I've learned from our years here that the answer to whys of schedule are never simple. They are tied to questions of other school's schedules, AP schedules, sports etc. Also a long summer remains a big priority as many staff travel at that time, but I'm sure that isn't the biggest priority. I know that coordinating just the sports schedule between different schools is hard enough.

I've been looking enviously at your FB photos of your GW outings. The weather has been wonderful! Yay for you.