Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Sports Festival/ Christmas

The last two days at school have been a ton of fun. End of term testing just finished last week so this week on Monday and Tuesday we had a sports festival. The girls had Volleyball and Basketball tournaments and the boys had Soccer and Basketball tournaments. I played Volleyball for as long as my knees could stand (not long) and cheered the rest of the time. Everyone in the school participated unless they had a doctor forbidding them to play (my friend was just in a car accident a little over a month ago so she wasn't allowed to participate). Everyone had fun as far as I could tell and it was just a great two days and a really good way to blow off steam from the testing I think. Everyone asked me if we have this sports festival day in the U.S. and I said no but tried to explain pep rallies. I would LOVE to hear peoples outraged reactions to kids in the U.S. taking two whole days off from class to play sports in a mandatory tournament. I really like how no one freaks out about stuff like that over here. Not everyone is super athletic in Japan but everyone put in some effort and just had a good time. I loved it. I also loved the opening ceremony for the sports days, we all went down to the track and sat on the ground and then stood and bowed for different speakers talking about the tournaments and the rules. Then we all did the gym warm up that everyone does before every gym class (I can now do it all with out messing up, I'm so proud) The teachers did it too as just a nice opening to the day. The only thing I did not like was that it was cold this morning!!! And students are not allowed to wear hats or mittens or scarves, even on the way to school technically. Students hide them all in their bags and the second they get out of sight of the school they put them on. Theres no heat in the school so students in the back rows bring blankets to put over their legs during class and everyone brings in those little carbon heat packs that we put in shoes and mittens in NY.

There was a full lunar eclipse the other night that I guess could only be seen from Asia. I watched part of it but then I was so tired and cold I went inside and went to sleep. The beginning of it was still cool though.

I'm finding that my favourite parts of the day are sunrise and sunset. In the morning for the past few days I have been able to look out my east window and see the sky just beginning to lighten and look out the southern window to see the moon set. Its really cool but also kinda weird. And yeah I know you can probably see that happen any where in the world but I get to see it over Japanese mountains. So there.

I went to Kobe on Saturday for a Christmas party and got to see the "Illuminarie" or the Illumination. Every year for about a week Kobe sets up this absolutely incredible light presentation in memory of those who died in the great Kobe earthquake. To me it seemed like a simply wonderful way to remember people. The light show is incredible, words really can't describe it, there are castles and all sorts of patterns and designs and a long walkway, the whole time the most beautiful and haunting music is playing over speakers. Lights are set up in the mountains and the designs can be seen from miles away from the city sky scrapers. If it weren't for the music you would think it was a celebration, which it kind of is. It's difficult to explain, but I thought it was a wonderful way to remember people who had passed on. I also realized that songs of mourning sound the same in most cultures. I thought the music was in latin at first because it sounded so much like the songs you hear in churches on Good Friday or that choirs in the U.S. sing to mourn for victims of one tragedy or another. It was just something to think about.

On Sunday I went to Osaka with some friends and we found a place that sold this fried Pizza type of thing. It tasted nothing like NY pizza but it was the closest thing I've had in months so I was glad to take it. The rest of the day was spent wandering around Osaka and just hanging out with the other Exchange students. I lived the farthest away so I had to leave early. When I got home I wrote on my facebook wall "I just got home...." A lot of people from the U.S. "liked" this because they thought I had come home for Christmas. I didn't even think about it when I wrote this, because as I realized after the confusion, Himeji is my home now, I don't know exactly when this happened but I am just so glad that it did.

Wow I didn't realize how busy I'm getting. No wonder I'm exhausted. Oh well, its worth it. :D

Monday, December 5, 2011


So excited! I went shopping today and had almost no problems with my Japanese!!!! I went to four different shops, explained what I wanted when I couldn't find it, talked about color and price and size with out issues, and I got everything I wanted!!!!! YAY!!!!! The only time I had no idea what someone was saying was when the saleswoman was explaining some fashion characteristics and I have a feeling I would have been lost in English there. STILL!!! I had fun.

My new host family is awesome, I love playing with my little host brother. He is constantly running around and singing and dancing and just being 3. He loves saying my name, or the closest he can get to it, "Obibi" now the whole family calls me "Obibi" because its just easier than trying to say my name. Luckily I had two younger siblings who could not say my name for a long time as well so I answer to pretty much anything with an "O" sound in it.

I am having such a great time, I love my life. How insanely lucky am I to get to be here?

Saturday, November 26, 2011

New House

I changed houses yesterday and I am now two train stations west from where I was. My new host family consists of my host parents, their 23 year old daughter, and her 3 year old son. I am speaking a lot more Japanese in this house (and using a translator a lot more) but thats a good thing because it should help my language more. My little host brother is really cute and just learning how to talk so we talked about Micky mouse this morning. I get stuck sometimes when he uses words I don't know but he is always quick to help out; I think he loves being able to talk better than someone. lol. My new house is GORGEOUS!!!!!! OMG!!! and I really like my family. All in all I'm having a fantastic time here.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Someone asked me for directions today! And more importantly I could give them!!!! Granted they wanted to know how to get to the castle and its on top of a hill in the center of the city and the road we were on led right up to the castle but STILL!!!! I understood what was going on and helped them out.

about 30 seconds later I was stopped by an elderly woman on the street and asked what country I was from.

Yesterday some friends and I went to Kobe to the aquarium and the beach. It was awesome!!! Its still in the 70's here  but no one in Japan goes swimming at the beach after August. Once the temperature is below 95 its WWWWAAAAAYYY too cold to go swimming. I, being from New York, went in the water anyway and it was wonderful. I'm currently driving my host mother crazy by wearing t-shirts around the house and outside. "It's winter" she says. "You must wear long shirts and wool sweaters". "Its 68 degrees and sunny" I say, "T-shirt weather". I was asked today if I wear t-shirts in winter in New York. Truthful answer is yes. She said that New Yorkers are crazy. Fair enough. Tomorrow I'm going to buy "winter clothes" so she wont worry so much, I don't want to drive her crazy I just only brought t-shirts thinking it would be warm here. I forgot that people have different ideas of warm. While I was rolling up my jeans and splashing around in the ocean most people were wearing turtle neck sweaters and wool socks. I feel bad for the kids from my area who are in NY and Washington. They must be dying.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Thank You Notes:

So I almost caused a traffic accident the other day, and I wasn't even driving! While walking home from school and waiting for the light to change some guy driving his car down a busy highway thought it would be a great idea to stick his head out the window and turn around while driving to do a double take at me, comment that I'm white, and drive away. The other cars behind him did not appreciate this. I thought it was kinda funny. Thank you driver, for reminding me for the 8000th time that I'm a pale outsider here, I might have forgotten if you hadn't informed me thus.
On the same day, I was on the train with a group of 7-8 year old boys who looked like they were coming home from soccer practice. The were all running around and goofing off and being adorable. When we all got off the train at the same spot one of them spotted me. The following conversation with his friend was in Japanese but I understood enough to get the drift.
           "Look! Theres a foreigner behind you!"
            "No there isn't"
          "No really! Look behind you" (friend turns and looks at me, I pretend to not know whats going on, all of the kids do their best to not look like their staring at me.)

The kids all crowd together and whisper at this point. Thank you soccer boys, for putting me on the same level as spiders, bears, monsters, and snakes. Also, thanks for making me laugh.
Thank you Animae, for totally confusing me even with english subtitles, Japanese TV is very different and the cultural differences confuse me, there are huge differences in humor so even though I understand something is supposed to be funny based on the tone, I don't get the joke. Also, thank you for teaching me how to insult people.
Thank you Japanese language for not really having swear words, things are insulting based on the context their in but there aren't any words that are insulting by nature or forbidden on TV or anything. This makes it so I don't have to worry about accidentally using a terrible word that I didn't know was terrible.
Finally, Thank you Jimmy Fallon for writing your book of thank you notes and making me laugh.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Old rule: Eat first ask questions later. New rule: Don't ask questions

Twice today I have put food into my mouth that I had no idea what it was (this happens a lot) the first time it was a rice ball (a kind of sweet) the second time it turned out to be stomach.....I'm done asking questions. 

Today my city had an international festival. Stands representing countries from all over the world were set up in the part with food and costumes and all sorts of cultural events. Unfourtunatly I didn't get to see much of the festival because I was in a group with my school doing a sort of work shop. We listened to over 30 people give speeches about their travels around the world (I of course was asked to give a speech without notice) It was nice to hear all of the experiences but I would have liked to go around to the other stands to see what they were doing. 

Saturday, October 22, 2011

So I haven't written anything in a while, not much has been going on. I've been going to school, coming home, studying, not really much. I had this week off because the other students had midterms which I didn't have to take. Today though I decided to head out to downtown Himeji to find myself some new clothes. Fashion is entirely different in Japan, its kind of difficult to explain. Any way I ran into some friends from school and with their help and the help of a store clerk I picked myself out some new clothes. Do you think I look Japanese now? Will people stop staring?

A week ago in my area there was a HUGE festival that over 100,000 people attended. It's apparently very famous in Japan and its name loosely translates too "The fighting festival" basically, about 40 men come dancing into the open area with a shrine carried on poles on their shoulders. The men all wear a colored cloth around their heads and a special diaper- ish looking thing.....thats it. Inside the shrine are a few more men playing Japanese drums. All the men chant and they carry the shrine through the main area, then a bunch of other men with decorated poles try to tip the shrine over. Then they bring in more shrines and they ram them against each other and try to knock each other over.....no one has a clue what this is about. I looked at guidebooks, I asked at least 5 people, they consulted guidebooks, no one has a clue what this is about. It was still an awesome experience and really interesting. I'll try to post a video if I can. This festival is also very dangerous though, a lot of fights break out and last year a few people were killed. To my knowledge no one died this year. (yay!) The festival took up the entire day, my host family some friends and I ate lunch while watching the fights. It was a ton of fun.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Well lets see, yesterday I broke a soda machine in my school which started spraying fanta and crushed ice everywhere. I tripped during an assembly when we were all supposed to be quiet and I hit two girls in the head with balls in gym class learning how to play tennis.

Today my class took a trip to Kyoto which was awesome. To start with, I misunderstood what time my host mother and I had to leave so I woke up at 5:30 planning to leave at 6:15 when in actualitly we were leaving at 6:50. I slept on the bus though, so it was fine. In Kyoto it rained ALL DAY!!!! So running from shop to shop we all got soaking wet. It was fun though. My friends had me try what I do believe is the healthiest dessert ever; green tea ice cream with sweet bean jam on top. Its ok, but its defenitly not chocolate. At one of the shops I decided to try out my Japanese skills and pointing to a stuffed bear said ``This is a bear`` (impressive huh?) Anyway thats what I meant to say, what apparently came out was ``This is a gay``. My friends figured it out and corrected me but they still laughed. Can't really blame them.

Walking around the college we were visiting we saw a replica of a Da Vinci sculpture I guess. The person giving us the guide told us it was Jesus Christ. Several girls then asked me if I had ever heard of this person. When I said I had they asked me to explain who he is and why he is famous.......this was an interesting conversation. I knew that western culture is totally dominated by Christianity but I never realized how much. I have seen many of these girls wearing cross's and they have seen me wearing mine but they have no idea that it is a symbol for a religion. They all just comment that my necklace is pretty. I tried to explain the concept of God-parents once before and it was hard, a confirmation was impossible to explain. I never have had an experience like this before where someone doesn't know what my cross means. I defenately have never been asked if I have ever heard of Jesus Christ or been in a position to explain Christianity to a group of people who have never heard of  him. It was weird.

Monday, October 3, 2011

In Japanese the word ``ringo`` means apple. So today we were talking about the beatles in class because there was a quote from one of their songs in the English textbook. There was a picture of the group and when the teacher was talking about something else the girl next to me pulled my arm, pointed to the picture and asked ``apple man, which one is apple man?`` Then the teacher called on me and asked if a) I knew who the beatles were, and b) if I could point out and name each group member......yeah.....I could handle that.
We're also covering cooking in Home Economics and the teacher wants me to learn how to cook japanese food so all the kids have to plan a menu in a group, pick recipies and then translate the whole thing into English (haha) I've been getting asked a lot of questions about food in the U.S. I was asked if we have rice cookers, if we can boil water in our kitchens, (I think this was wondering if I have a stove). I also keep getting asked what we call all different types of Japanese food, most of which they don't even serve in Japanese restaurants in the U.S. I keep getting this look like ``Well then what do you eat if you dont have any of this``

Thursday, September 22, 2011

One hell of a week:

This week, particularly the last two days had me doubled over laughing at pretty much everything. On monday I went to a karaoke for the first time with some girls from school. We sang at the karaoke for a while, then went shopping, then went to a ``purikura`` a photo booth that changes your appearance and lets you alter stuff in your picture. It was a lot of fun and the girls are really nice and funny.

The next two days I did pretty much nothing because there was a typhoon and school was closed for two days.

Yesterday, back at school, the kids made me laugh harder than I have since the first time I saw the pink panther movies. It started at lunch when some friends were trying to find a way to explain masochism. (there was a reason, I just can't remember it) They looked up the word in their translator but I told them it was the wrong word because I didn't think it made sense. So the three girls tried to act out masochism......... They started punching each other then jumping up and down and clapping their hands with happiness to get the point across. Eventually I figured it out but by the time I did all four of us were shreiking with laughter and one girl was yelling, ``NO NO NO!!!!! NOT ME!!!! JOKE!!!!!! ONLY TO EXPLAIN!!!!!`` We were laughing so hard that I forgot why they had to explain it in the first place, I know there was a legitimate reason........lol I burst out laughing every time I caught any of their eye for the rest of the day.

Next, we had an assembly for the new members of student council. The girls sitting next to me were checking my shoe size, comparing my skin tone to theirs, etc. One of my friends asked me what we call the hair on our arms in the U.S. the english teacher listening said ``armhair`` so the two girls quickly conferred and then said ``We are very interested in your armhair.``...........needless to say I cried with laughter. They asked me why the hair on my arms is light instead of dark like theirs. I tried to explain that my hair is just lighter but they kept asking why. Eventually I asked the English teacher to ask the biology teacher to explain in class why I look the way I do.

Finally, back in the classroom, the girls were all asking me about boys.

``Do you like shy boys?``
``Do you like positive boys?`` (happy/cheerful)
``Do you like negative boys?`` (sad/serious)
``Um, I don't know.``
``Ok ok, do you like.....``(looks up on dictionary)
``Do you like predatory boys?``
...................................................they heard me screaming with laughter at the end of the hall.......When I started laughing/crying the girls figured out that something was wrong so they consulted their dictionary again and........
``Do you like meat-eating boys?``
I'm assuming that something was lost in translation. I really can't remember the last time I laughed that hard. I couldn't speak for a few minutes.

Now we get to today, or this morning. I woke up and got ready for school as usual. When I got downstairs my host mom wasn't up which was weird but I assumed she was tired and sleeping late. I made myself breakfast and lunch and headed off for school. The first thing that weirded me out was that the trains were empty. The 7:30 train is always packed and today I was able to find a seat and sit down. It was weird but I saw a few other students so I didnt worry about it. Then, at the main train station in my city the downtown area was deserted. The six lane road was empty except for a few buses that seemed to be fewer than normal. Still, I just followed some girls from my school and went to school as usual. I would ask my teacher later what was going on. The school was weirdly deserted also, only a few students were walking around. I assumed I was late so hurried to put on my shoes and get to class. Thats when I noticed that all of the indoor shoes for the lower grades were still there, I figured out at this point that something was off. So I went upstairs to the teachers room to ask my english teacher what was going on......the teachers room was empty. So I went upstairs just to check and make sure no one was there......no one was there. On my way down an english teacher who had been sent to find me told me that there was no school today.....it was a national holiday and only third graders had to come in to take a test.......I just started laughing when she told me this so she figured out that I had no idea. She laughed too, and asked me how long it takes me to get to and from school (an hour, both ways). I headed home, when I got off the train at my stop my host mom called me, she had woken up and found all of my stuff gone and figured out what happened. She found it hilarious too. She thought that my teacher had told me that it was a holiday, and my teacher thought that my mom would have told me. I'm still laughing which is getting to be a problem because my stomach is starting to hurt from laughing so much. They say that laughter is good for you and makes you live longer, another week like this and I'll be immortal.

Saturday, September 17, 2011



Oh my gosh I've been here a month and I didn't even notice. Thats no fair, if I've been here a month already then that means that one tenth of my time here is gone.......I've got to get busy!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Japanese school:

So in Japan everyone has to wear a uniform. There is no makeup, no dyeing of hair, no jewelry, no hair accessories, no cell phones, you have to be home by 5 unless your at a school related event, you are not allowed to spend the night at another persons house unless it is a special event. The school decideds when its cold enough to wear mittens or a scarf on the way to school and if its raining you wear the school designated raincoat to and from school.  These are all rules set by the schools. But whacking each other with towels while the teacher sets up? Totally ok. Surprisingly I can deal with the rules and restrictions pretty well (I'm sure everyone remembers graduation)  It doesn't really bother me because I understand why the rules are set as such and the culture is that the school gets to decide. I may not love my uniform or the rules, but I can deal.

In Japan, there are no school janitors. The students clean the school after classes every day. It's in a rotation so you only have to stay after school to clean once every few weeks and its your rotation for one week. With about 1000 students, the entire 4 story school is cleaned in about 10 minutes. Keep in mind that I go to a private school here. These kids are paying to go to this school and they still clean. Public high schools have their students clean the building too. I would love to hear the parents and kids response if high schools in the U.S. made kids stay after school to clean. lol

On my third day of school I found out that when teachers are mad at a class they just don't show up to teach. (teachers change classrooms not students here) A cell phone rang during a math class on my first day of school so the next time we had math class the teacher just didn't show up because he was mad at us. We had a free period where we could do whatever we wanted. Some students read, or drew on the blackboard, or talked. We didnt miss any material we just picked up the next time we had math. I totally fail to understand this punishment. Also, anyone still at OHS, ask some of the teachers how they would feel about being able to just not show up for class if they were mad at the students. lol

In Japan you stand and bow at the start of the class and do the same at the end. They also have this warm up for gym class that everyone seems to know, they were really surprised that I didnt know how to do the gym warm up. `You dont know how to do this? Dont you do it in the states?` Shocked that I dont know that but also shocked that I know what mcdonalds is and who Rhianna is. I really dont get it.

In Japan there are no school buses, I take public transportation to school and thats strange, 70% of the students at my school ride their bikes, most of the rest are close enough to walk. The only reason I'm not riding a bike is because the school is worried about traffic accidents. (fair point where I'm concerned, though I doubt I'd need a car to get hurt)

My principal at this school didn't want me to come. They changed principals this year and this one didn't want an exchange student at his International high school. The rotary really had to fight to get me to be allowed to come here. Everyone also seemed to think that I would be really obnoxious. They said they understood that the rules were constricting and that I wasn't used to have to clean the school but when in Rome do as the Romans do. They all seemed really surprised when I said I had no problem following the rules (bet some family and friends are laughing at that) and even more surprised when I didn't throw a hissy fit about having to clean the school. I guess they had an American a few years back who complained about the rules, was outraged that she had to help clean, and just was a pain. Hopefully I'm showing them that not all Americans are divas.

 You change shoes CONSTANTLY in Japan. In school I have a pair of shoes for outside, a pair for inside, an pair for the gym, and then there are special shoes you change into for the computer room, the english room, and the art rooms. Thats just school, at home there are a pair of shoes for in the house, a pair of shoes for the bathroom, exta inside shoes for guests, shoes for the special japanese room w the reed mats, and shoes for the garden. My host family isn't home right now and I'm running around the house barefoot because I can!

Also, we are going over English proverbs in class. Glass half empty vs Glass half full. I was asked by my teacher if I am a pessimist or an optomist. I said optomist (grinning). She then explained to the class that I meant that I see the bright side of everything or that I always see the good. As there were no classmates or teachers from home to shout protests over this, my entire class thinks I'm a glass half full kind of person. Josephine, I bet your laughing over that. And yes I know that if you were in class with me you would have set them straight. But I just couldnt help myself, it was too funny.

And yeah, thats about it for my school so far.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011


NOTICE:There is absolutely nothing funnier than having your Japanese teacher (who looks weirdly like Mr. Moussa) say `G'day mate` in an Australian/Japanese accent first thing in the morning.

Were covering english proverbs in class. I was asked what my favourite is and I gave a quote thats not exactly a proverb but I was on the spot! My english teacher then wrote on the board my quote `A rose by any other name would smell as sweat.` I could not stop laughing. I will be using this new quote from now on.

Favourite new saying: (old japanese proverb) `Monkeys can fall from tree` Try saying that in a deep, profound, proverbial tone.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

I challenge any and all to pictionary or charades when I get back. I will destroy you all.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

A culinary note:

To the chef's of Japan,
This is about the food you call `American` food, so I'm allowed to comment.
Hamburgers are served on rolls with ketchup, pickles, tomatoes, cheese, and lettuce. Onions are optional. They are not served on a plate with a sunny side up egg on top. While this is surprisingly delicious, it is not American.
The following never go on pizza: Sunny side up eggs, corn, potatoes, scrambled eggs.
Taking bread dough and baking whole kernels of corn into it does not make it corn bread. It is pretty good though. Melon bread is awesome too, I thought my host mother was crazy when she gave it to me for breakfast and explained what it was but it is DELICIOUS!!!
French fries are eaten with ketchup. The are not served on a plate with whipped cream and a cherry on top. That is for ice cream.

As for your greatest achievements: The aforementioned melon bread is amazing, chocolate bread is awesome too, as is your coffee. `Udong` (rice noodles) are absolutely fantastic and OMG the sushi/sashimi is AMAZING!!!!! Teriaki anything is awesome and A+ on what ever my host mother has been serving me for lunch. I have absolutely no idea what most of it is (I found out today that part of it is kelp) but it is fantastic.

Also, if I get asked one more time if I know what Macdonalds and Pringles are I will not be able to hold back the laughter.

To my classmates. I just watched you eat kelp, raw octopus, and seaweed. And your screaming in horror because I don't peel my grapes before eating them? Turns out that in japan they peel everything. Everyone in my class of 40 people turned and watched horrified when the girl next to me told them what I was doing. They then started asking me questions about eating fruit in the U.S. they all gasped in actual legit horror when I told them that we often don't peel apples, plums, peaches, pears, and never peel grapes. RAW OCTOPUS PEOPLE!!!!! I mean it's actually delicious but STILL!!!!!!! And I really mean screaming in horror. I then dared them to eat a grape whole, skin and all. Several students tried but many refused and watched in awe as their classmates tried it, then said surprised that it was good. The others didn't believe them. I was doubled over in my chair laughing at their response to this.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011


Today I was asked three questions that made me laugh. The first was asked by an elderly woman who cornered me on my way to school and asked why I was here. I said I'm getting on the train to go to school. She said no, why are you here in Himeji, Japan.

The second was a series of questions that I have been asked nearly every day. Do you have a boyfriend? Followed by, do you like japanese men? This still makes me laugh mainly because I have no idea how to answer that question.

The last question I was asked today made me cry with laughter. Two of my classmates walked up to me and asked me `Why are you white?` When I started to laugh, they quickly conversed and said `I mean, why are you not black?` This of course only made me laugh harder. Eventually they got the point across that they wanted to know why I don't tan in the sun. I tried to explain that I wear sunblock and they asked why? I said because I turn red and burn which just got me blank faces. Luckily I remembered the word for cancer and said that I don`t want cancer from the sun. This they accepted but I still laughed most of the way home. I'm glad they amuse me as much as I amuse them.

Monday, September 5, 2011

First day of school:

Everyone in my school is really eager to talk to me, I get stopped on the way to school, in the hallways, leaving school, by students of all different grades who want to introduce themselves and talk to me in English. While it is a little weird for me to be a sort of celebrity it is also really nice. Everyone wants to know if I am happy and if I like Japan which I do. The students and teachers at my school are all very kind.

The Volleyball and basketball clubs are both begging me to join, probably because of my height. But tomorrow we have gym for the first time and I have a feeling that once they see my complete and total lack of hand\eye coordination they won't be as eager.

The only classes I can understand so far are math and english. It's frustrating though because though I know how to do the math problem or write the sentence I don't understand the question I'm being asked. I can do the work and I understand the math theories or the english grammar but I don't understand the question!

All in all it was a difficult but ok first day of school.

Friday, September 2, 2011


My English teacher told me yesterday on my first day of school that everyone in the school, teachers included were hoping for a typhoon day today. Still waiting for the storm to hit. It should be interesting!!!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

How to make a girl feel at home:

Step 1: When she tires to speak in Japanese and messes up. Don't just laugh, text your friends what she said so they can laugh too.
Step 2: When she goes out stare at her like she is the devil incarnate which I'm 80% sure you think she is. Bonus points for little kids staring at her open mouthed and hiding when she turns and looks.
Step 3: Say the words `oki` and `sagaaru` often enough that the first words she learns by immersion are `big` and `tall`.
Step 4: Ask her why she came to Japan and when she says to learn Japanese, without missing a beat ask if she likes Japanese men.
Step 5: Don't carry shoes in her size. Make her buy mens shoes to emphasize her huge feet.
Step 6: Come up behind her and run your hands through her hair or randomly reach over and touch her hair while in the middle of a conversation.

But also be kind and welcoming. Check up on her to see how she is doing and be willing to teach and help her with anything she needs.