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Message from a Nihongo-Pro Student
Drinking my way to Japanese conversation? ... in a totally responsible manner.
For the last eight years or so I’ve been living in a small Swiss village: more cows than inhabitants, lot of nature and zero entertainment. Naturally, one starts drinking to fight the boredom. Well, at least it’s quite natural given my Russian background. In Russia drinking is considered to be a social activity—hence you need at least two people to drink in a socially acceptable manner (or drink responsibly”). It’s however quite difficult to find a reliable drinking partner in a small village overcrowded with hard-working Swiss farmers and their milk cows…

One day I had to attend a—I can’t remember exactly what it is called, but it was one these brain-washing, team-building things every company nowadays tortures their employees with. We started with a short introduction round—name, hobby, etc. Of course, everybody had model hobbies like hiking or reading or reading while hiking.

Everyone except this one Japanese guy, who said without any false modesty: “My hobby is drinking.”

So, he and I started drinking together. Regularly. Meaning almost every day. But in a totally responsible manner.

One thing led to another—or, to be more precise, drinking together led to cultural exchange—or, to be absolutely precise, he started drinking Russian vodka and I started learning Japanese. It was fun, but I wasn’t really making much progress in Japanese, although I was (and still am) quite committed to learning the language. Maybe I wasn’t focused enough though…

Thanks to Nihongo-Pro I discovered that one can learn Japanese without drinking! What a mind-blowing experience! Well, to be honest, with Araki-sensei we quite often talk about food and drinks, but so far we have managed to remain sober.

The most amazing thing though is that online Japanese lessons with Araki-sensei actually, really help. Before my first lesson I was, let’s say, a bit concerned whether I’d be able to understand anything, but right from the first minutes, Araki-sensei involved me in a conversation I couldn’t even imagine I was capable of. But by means of some voodoo magic (or maybe due to Araki-sensei’s experience?) all of a sudden I realized that I can be quite talkative, even in Japanese.

It has been almost a year since our first lesson. The only disadvantage of online lessons I have discovered so far is that one can’t drink together with the teacher. But collaboration technology and tools are rapidly improving, so I’m pretty sure the day will come when Araki-sensei and I will have an online Japanese class while drinking. Of course, in a totally responsible manner.

Leonid Pavlov
(student of Araki-sensei)
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Here’s why students choose Nihongo-Pro:

Nihongo-Pro takes care of our teachers and students with great online Japanese lessons in our custom classroom for learning Japanese.

Whether your goal is to study Japanese for the JLPT, learn Nihongo for your job, learn basic Japanese, or learn Japanese online just for fun, Nihongo-Pro teachers will help you achieve your Japanese language goals.

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