Wednesday, September 29, 2004

More Weather

We are having a very inconvenient typhoon. It's not a big one. (On TV they keep calling it a 'big typhoon', but I've learned that they call every typhoon a big one if it hits Japan.) It's almost a tropical storm, it's so weak. It is, however, bringing lots and lots of rain.

This is inconvenient because at every place I work they only cancel classes for an official high wind warning. They do not cancel classes for official heavy rain or flood warnings any more. They used to, but in Japan we get too many official heavy rain and flood warnings, and I guess too many classes were being cancelled. (Too many for whom, I'm not quite sure. I've never heard a student complain about it, and certainly not a teacher.) We just get wet, and a lot of students don't bother to come to class because they're not that motivated to begin with, and if it means getting soggy they won't bother. This means teaching a lesson that won't matter too much if half the students miss it - you don't want to do something that will continue in the next lesson.

On Wednesdays I cycle to work. I could have taken a taxi today, I suppose, but I had some grocery shopping I wanted to do on my way home, and while I could have come home and then gone out again, I hate doing that. After teaching all day, when I walk in the door all the bounce goes out of me and I don't want to go out again. So I cycled even though it was pissing down and had been since last last night - it has rained a lot in the last 24 hours, and is still raining heavily. I got wet. I took a skirt to change into because I don't have a proper raincoat. I only have a rain jacket, so only my top half stayed dry, except my hair. I took a towel as well, and was glad I did.

Coming home it stopped raining at exactly the right time. Well, actually it stopped raining earlier than the right time, but I told my last class to go home quickly before it started again, and finished early. I managed to get to the supermarket and home after that without needing to put on the raincoat, and felt pleased with myself. I'm sure my students were pleased with me, too. Those who actually turned up, that is.

Now that it's too late to do me any good an official strong wind warning has been issued. I'm hoping that it will still be in force at 6 am, because if it is, tomorrow's morning classes will be cancelled. But I'm not counting on it. The wind isn't strong at all, and the typhoon is moving too quickly over us. It will probably be work as usual tomorrow morning, only wetter than usual. Like I said, the timing is awful.

However, it has just occurred to me that if it rains like this for much longer I won't be able to get to work anyway unless I swim. It's raining the sort of rain you usually associate with brief downpours, except that it isn't brief. I've starting to wonder about building an ark.

And having written that I just stepped outside to see what the road looked like, and discovered that it has developed a current.

Oh, well. I suppose I'd better prepare for classes anyway. I've been here for long enough that I know you can never count on the weather being bad when you want it to be.