Monday, August 2, 2010
not for the faint of heart
Today I ventured out to take Evelyn for a preschool interview. In my last post, I stated how awesome the GPS is. Well, I take it back. Although it is great for the most part - it took me to the wrong location (it took me to the town hall instead of the school I was trying to get to) and it also tried to take me down an alley that was obviously not meant for a mini-van. No one seemed to try to stop me on the 'street' but at one point, it was so narrow that I clipped the side of my mirror. Then it came to a 90 degree turn. Imagine a one lane 'street' that dead ends and you are to turn right. Since my GPS was telling me to do it...I tried. Once I felt my bumper scrape the wall....I stopped and reversed back down the street. Yep, I was that stupid American who went the wrong way and then reversed back out of the 'street'. Thank goodness we only spent $2000 on the van :-)
We ended up 45 minutes late (after going to the town hall, finding the ONE person who spoke broken English and writing down the Japanese website to get better directions) and was a little disappointed. I know I was still shaky from the car ride...but the school seemed a bit to strict. They do not take holiday breaks (well...a small one over Christmas and another small one in March) and they go from 9-3 everyday. They did offer great activites while the kids are in school - gymnastics, ballet, swimming - but I just didn't feel that 'feeling' I was hoping to have. Evie passed their entrance exam (yes - that's right folks, an entrance exam) but needed improvement in her writing skills (yes again, folks, they expect 3 years olds to write). They did believe she was a fast learner and could be a great asset to the school though.
Another bummer was the cost. They severely discount the military English speaking kids - but it was still going to be $380/month. They include bus and lunch costs in there...but we wouldn't use it, and they didn't discount for not participating in those. The new school (not the one that took forever to get to today) would be 10 mins from base - so I would just drive her. Also, since she has a nut allergy - I am REQUIRED to provide her own food. But yet they still charge me for food she would not be eating???
Regardless, I was pretty bummed when I left. I was, however, proud that I ventured out, got lost, found my way, and returned home safe and sound - with just some love taps on my car. The rest of the day I ran errands on base and got quite a lot done. My favorite thing we did this afternoon was take Gavin to a Japanese kids class. It was very similar to the Spanish classes he took - and he LOVED it! There were 3 other boys his age and they hit it off great! Plus, he already learned a few new words and practiced the ones he already knew. YAY Gavin!