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Tuesday, Dec. 21, 2010

VIEWS FROM THE STREET

Sagami-Ono, Kanagawa: So this is Christmas, and what have you done (in 2010)?


By ARTHUR O'KEEFE

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Johnny Klass (Ghanaian)
'Klass' restaurant/bar owner, 40
I went to Turkey; it was a nice vacation. It was great! I learned how to make kebabs from a Turkish friend who has 25 restaurant branches there. Having kebab on the menu has improved my business.

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Takumi Amano (Japanese)
Deputy representative, 25
Foreign language skills can be very important in business, so I've put my main focus in this regard on English and Mandarin. I feel I've improved my Mandarin conversation ability, especially for business purposes.

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Erika Shannon (Japanese/American)
High school student, 17
I passed my vocational college entrance exam. Vocational schools aren't as hard to get into as a regular college or university, but I was also able to pass a scholarship exam. It was, for me, the big accomplishment of the year.

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Jack Shanks (American)
English teacher, 31
Like many people, I've had financial issues to deal with. But as of this year I've paid off my debt, which is a great feeling. It won't distract me any more from other matters, such as writing my novel.

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Hikari Shimmura (Japanese)
English school staff, 22
I love hula dancing, and in August I won second prize in an international competition. I'm happy to have accomplished that, but I also feel disappointed not to have won first prize. Next year I'll get first prize!

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Andy McCarthy (Irish)
Assistant English teacher, 34
My baby boy, Ronan, was born on Dec. 7, 2010 — my biggest accomplishment this year, and probably my whole life! I've almost finished a master's that I hope will get me a job in a university in the new year.

Interested in gathering views in your neighborhood? Submissions are paid. E-mail community@japantimes.co.jp for further information.


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