PTA Bollocks – End of Term

14 Jul

This Friday is the last day of term 1 here in Japan. Tis also the day me and the boys fly to NZ and also the day Typhoon number 11 is due to slam directly into the airport we leave from, so whether we actually make it out alive or not is another matter. My kebab and cheap wine extravaganza may get delayed by a day.

Our school had the end of term PTA bollocks ten days ago – the Friday before last. The kinder next door kindly has their’s on the same day so parents with siblings at both can just take the one day off work – because yes, kindergarten PTA warrants taking a day off work. And parents do. Sometimes even the FATHER takes the day off work and both parents turn up to watch their child sing ‘Under The Spreading Chestnut Tree’ and such.

This year the kinder PTA kicked off at 9:30 with  a class observation slash parental help involvement lesson whereby the teacher wanted parents to help their child write a wish for ‘tanabata‘ – an annual Japanese festival celebrating the one day of the year two star crossed lovers can reunite. People around the nation write wishes on pieces of paper and string them onto pieces of heavily decorated bamboo. The wishes ‘should’ be things like ‘I wish for health for our family for the next year’ and ‘peace on earth’ kind of stuff.

But if you do this kind of shit at a kindergarten the wishes are a bit more colorful – like ‘I want to catch the biggest fish in the sea’ – of if you are really lucky ‘I want to BE the biggest fish in the sea’ and if I can’t be that then ‘I want to be a power ranger’, ‘Preferably the green one’… ….

After helping Ryu trace my letters (his English letters are officially better than his hiragana) , it was time for the road safety 30 minutes – for which I was BOSS – as per the role of traffic safety leader this year. I read a story and we practiced walking over a stick on zebra crossing mat. It was Deli Lama worthy enlightenment, I tell ya. The kids then got sent next door and the parents had the PTA part – how the term had gone etc etc and what to prepare for the 6 week long summer vacay. The kids are meant to take their morning glory plants home and fill in a chart – coloring in circles for the number of flowers blooming each day. I think I will pass this homework on to Granny K, who will no doubt use organic special flower juice stuff and have 15 flowers each day.

Kinder PTA finished at 12 o’clock and primary school PTA started at 12:40 so I rushed to the supermarket to get something for lunch and then scoffed it at home and headed back to whence I had come.

Hub, who took the afternoon off – as he is from the camp that thinks kinder PTA bollocks is for mummies but school shite is for daddies too – on occasion – when he feels like taking an afternoon off. Shou had a fabulous class observation lesson on how far a plastic car could go using a rubber band. Really, I was fascinated. I love physics.

and wine.

I can’t remember what Marina’s class was doing – which equals obviously not very fabulous.

After class observations it was year meetings with the teachers. Marina and Shou have the same teacher so hub and I sat in on the same meeting – for which I (capital letters and bold) am 2nd year  parent rep. HTB’s MUM is 3rd year parent rep. The teacher got confused because I was there but both the FATHERS were there. She actually tried to pass the initial greeting, which the class reps do, over to the fathers – who sat there going no, no, you go first, nooooo, you go first, giggle giggle giggle, like two fuckin school girls.

So I gave hub the ‘stern look’ and said “Good afternoon everybody, thank you for taking the time out of your ridiculously busy schedules to come to today’s PTA meeting. We will now start our meeting. Sensei, please, go ahead”

I had to leave part way through to pick up Ryu from kinder and go home and meet a translation deadline. I then headed back, with Ryu in tow, to the tail end of the overall PTA meeting. I then left that at 4:15 to take my English students (whose parents were all at PTA and thus unable to ferry them around) back to our place for English. At 5:30 I took them all back again to the community center beside the school where the PTA secretariat (or whatever) were setting up the keg and sorting out the coals for the evening’s PTA BBQ.

I then drove home, sprayed the kids ten times with mozzie spray, packed up my BBQ bag and headed, with hub and the kids, to the BBQ.

EVERY household was represented. ALL 30 kids came and in total there were 89 people, including teachers, siblings and local old people’s group men – who I think just came for the beer.

We had a grand ole time. My mystery meat was a great hit – kangaroo patties and crocodile skewers. The kids got shit scared during the haunted school – a couple of the teachers open the three storied school back up and sit in the dark in a couple of the classrooms. One teacher plays his guitar. A father of one of the kids, a fisherman, took a tank of air in and squirted bursts of air out. It was pitch black and all you could see from the BBQ was kids with their flashlights, screaming. The first graders, and Ryu, came back crying but in the same breath declared it the best part of the BBQ.

The pissed parents then lit fireworks into a row of trees and then all patted themselves on the back that nothing caught alight.

Really, a great night.

We had to leave the car and walk the 2km home as both hub and I had been drinking. He was a level ahead of me on the ‘drunk and jolly’ meter and wanted the whole family to sing ultra man theme songs the entire way home. It got to a point where the kids were giving him so much grief and telling him to just shut the fuck up…. we then got picked up by some people that live near by. They had been at the BBQ too. We couldn’t all fit into the van so we opted to kick the drunk fathers out and make them walk the 500m back in the dark.

I got home, grabbed a flashlight and went to light the way for hub – who was still singing ultra man songs and only just missed staggering into the rice paddies…

fun times.

SDGH&QL

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6 Responses to “PTA Bollocks – End of Term”

  1. littlebelgianwriter July 14, 2015 at 1:47 pm #

    Reading this put a smile on my face 🙂 The last sentence does illustrate ‘too much wine in rural japan’ 😉

    • gaijinwife July 15, 2015 at 12:23 am #

      Indeed! Except hub’s was too much beer and shochu in rural Japan. Tis amazing nobody has fallen into the river yet – a small truck and an old woman on a bike have fallen into the rice paddies but …

  2. Susan (Eastendmom) July 14, 2015 at 4:59 pm #

    Wonderful! This really does sound like a good time. Hope you’ll be writing from NZ. Have a good trip.

    • gaijinwife July 15, 2015 at 12:25 am #

      Thanks Susan 🙂 If we actually make it to NZ in the middle of the typhoon then yes, I am predicting a fabulous time. Although it will be bloody cold I hear. Hopefully I’ll get my blogging mojo back in NZ – although tis harder as I would be writing about situations and people who can all read my blog if they want. At least here the chances the people who appear in the blog could actually read and understand it are minimal!! xx

  3. Amanda Harlow July 15, 2015 at 5:11 am #

    and you want to leave all this and go to cold NZ???? why?????!!!!

  4. heather July 16, 2015 at 12:55 am #

    K is freaked out each sankanbi at all the dads there. The fact that he’s a dad and he’s there tends to do his head in. ;P

    Last year Amy’s class PTA head was a dad. We had THE SHORTEST meetings ever. He was an all business guy and the (female) teacher was very deferential to him. Eyerollingly sexist but I wasn’t complaining when I was heading home and everyone else was still in meetings!

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Mrs D Is Going Without

Too much wine in rural Japan

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