02 November, 2016

Celebrate the small achievements

I've had periods of discouragement recently. There's no point in pretending otherwise. I felt so discouraged at one time early last week that I even wondered if I should pack up and go back to Australia. (Believe me, that is rare these days and takes a high level of discouragement, because the sheer immensity of that move would be overwhelming and I'd catch a tonne of flack from the rest of the family). 

Distill it back to the origin and it was culture stress. This article describes it very well as well as recommending ways to do something about it: http://www.missionarycare.com/culture-stress

My old nemesis of my failure to do a good job with language learning was at the very bottom of it all and I just felt useless.

I girded my loins, however, and pushed myself out of my comfort zone. Result: the situation that was particularly niggling me improved and I felt better. 

Now the situation last week was deeper and more complicated than shopping for chicken mince. But I feel as though I should celebrate a small victory here in relation to that after posting this a few weeks ago. 

Yesterday I located the meat counter at a store I rarely visit (Ito Yokado) and asked for chicken mince (US=ground chicken, 日本語=とりのひきにく or tori no hikiniku). It reminded me of the struggle I had learning to buy stamps here! But in the end it turned out to be very simple, as long as I remembered the right phrase (so I feel a bit of fool even celebrating this here, but sometimes a fool needs to step up and admit it so that other people don't feel such fools). And it was super cheap! 1kg for just ¥480 or just over AU$5. Wow. The boys loved the rissoles I made last time, I think I'll try that again. But for sure I'll be doing this on a regular basis and branching out into other recipes too.

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