Remember how I did the eikaiwa (English conversation) class at the bar? Well, I decided to move the party to my house. Each week we'll make dinner together and have our "English lesson" there.
I call it - "enkaiwa" - "enkai" (eating and drinking party) + "eikaiwa" = "enkaiwa"! That's Tracey-ben ("ben" refers to a dialect: ex: Isahaya ben is spoken in Isahaya).
I'd gotten a ham from Costco for my Christmas party, but didn't get to use it, so, we had a lovely ham dinner with stuffing and salad and apple sauce. I know that sounds kinda normal to you Americans, but I kept hearing "OOooo - sugoi! (amazing!)" I didn't even know how to describe stuffing in Japanese, since there's nothing like it in this country's fare. Get this - I actually only had a 1/4 ham (it was about $50 and all that could fit in my oven!), but my Japanese friends still kept making noise about how HUGE the piece of meat was. You have to understand, I've never even seen a whole chicken or a slab for London broil here - everything is already cut up into tiny pieces (I guess to make it look like you're getting more!).
After dinner we had some treats from a local pastry shop. Ma-chan said that when she was picking out the desserts, she didn't initially pick the strawberry one. Then - "their eyes made a contact" - and she had to get the little smiling strawberry dessert. It's unfortunate that by the time we got to eat him, he'd gotten so tired!