Thursday, July 5, 2007

July 5, 2007 Hardcore Training

I must say, I am very impressed with this internship. The only internship I have done so far was in 10th grade when I still wanted to become a biologist, so I worked for 3 weeks in a nature reserve-type of area - and when I write work, I mean actual physical labor: After these three weeks, I was a master at digging holes, cleaning out ponds, constructing children's playgrounds, improving walk ways and running with wheel barrows (Schubkarren). I had loads of fun, but it was hard work.

This time that is very different. It's not that I am not working or that I am staring out of the window all day, but this is way more like a training for me than working. I get insight into almost every department, the people are taken out of their regular responsibilities for 1-4 days to teach me what they do in their everyday work, I can ask millions of questions and the whole event seems to serve the sole purpose of teaching me! I start feeling really bad - I thought I would have to give something back to the company, instead they are paying me pretty well, giving me allocation, frequently inviting me to lunch, taking me on excursions, and all I have to do is to attend the meetings and ask loads of questions! This is great!

I do get assignments from Eric, mostly to prepare presentations about companies, or to do internet research on a specific topic. But I really don't feel like I am working hard.

I developed a new strategy for the end of my teaching sessions. Almost always, they ask me whether I have more questions, and as I already nail them with loads of questions during the presentations, I usually run out of any more to ask in the end - so I started asking people if they had any questions about me! And it turns out that almost everyone is interested in something (I'm not sure whether I have mentioned that yet, but apparently, everyone here has seen and read my CV...!!!), and once they find out that I am more than willing to answer their questions, they open up even more, tell about themselves, offer me their help, and even try very hard to speak English even though they usually never speak it :o) Yesterday, Umezawasan (my colleague) said that she was very surprised at how open people were talking with me, and that Japanese people usually are a lot shyer in talking with foreign people - I guess I must be doing something right then! *beam*

On my way to and from work, I took some pics of Ashiya (where I live) to give you a tiny impression:

So this scenery I get to see every morning :o)
Good night, then!

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