Showing posts from April, 2016

How to Improve Your Japanese: Survival Situations

I was in the hospital attending to my father-in-law who, at the time, was suffering from ALS (Lou Gehrig's disease). By this time, my father had lost the ability to speak and was on a life-supporting respirator machine. One morning I walked into his room to check on him and saw a panicked look on his face. I could hear wheezing from the tube providing oxygen to his lungs, and his faced started turing red. I noticed there was a nurse in the room attending to another patient, but I wasn't quite sure what to say or do so I just started speaking anything and everything I knew in Japanese. It got her attention and she quickly attend to my father by clearing out the obstruction in his breathing tube and the situation was under control.

Again, I was in a hospital at midnight with my wife who had been suffering from a high fever for almost a week. In the moments before heading to the hospital she began to lose feeling in the right half of her body, and I immediately starting thinking …