Wednesday is my last day with one of my schools, a JHS that I have been to several times a month since May. (Next week another of my schools is kaput as well.) So on today's Icky Illustrations, I asked the kids to bid me farewell with a message and a picture. Here are some pics and then some messages.
Basically all of the notes read the same. "I had fun in your lesson. It was interesting. It made me laugh. Thank you. Good luck." It's nice to see that I'm making an impact.
As for my Yokai exposé, I'm done with Asia and am moving on to Europe. First up, the UK.
I love the Japanese name for Jack o' Lantern, ジャック・アランターン or Jack Arantan from Ireland. Not sure what he's using as a lantern there, it doesn't appear to be a turnip, though in the text it's referred to as a カボチャ = kabocha or pumpkin. Being turned away from Heaven, then from Hell because he tricked the Devil are all mentioned but there's a twist to it that I'm unfamiliar with. They refer to him as an 鬼火 (Oni-bi) then as a 狐火 (Kitsune-bi) which are both terms for the Will-o'-the-wisp.
Staying in Ireland, we have the most famous of wee ones, called レプラカーン repurakan which you'd correctly assume is a Leprechaun. In this picture they don't look much like the Lucky Charms guy but more like cycloptic snails. Though they hang around the house and may help housewives with their chores, they are also quite mischievous.
In the Alps, we meet up with グレムリン = Gremlins. Not the ones from the Joe Dante movies but more like the ones on the wing of the airplane that Shatner and Lithgow met.
It's your basic European エルフ (Erufu = Elf, duh.) These furry guys have magical powers and based on the picture, like to dine on kiddies!
Moving on to England is the 狼男 or werewolf/ wolfman take your pick. I think he looks more Reed than Chaney, don't you?
I'm not at all familiar with the ケルピー (Kerupi) from England which appears to be some kind of water mermaid. Look at the bottom of this page for another version. Ohhh. It's a Kelpie, that makes sense, though it's not exactly from England, more like Scottish or Irish Celts.
コーモラン (Comoran ?) is another unfamiliar monster to me. According to this, it looks like the antagonist in Jack the Giant Killer. Sure enough, the Cormoran is the Welsh giant in Jack's story. I'm learning a lot tonight.
Sticking around in the UK (looking less and less like イギリス=England and more like the UK) we have Goblins. I always thought they were bigger than depicted but they do seem to like to molest young ladies.
ドラキュラ = Dracula is a 吸血鬼 (kyuuketsuki or bloodsucker) who can change into a bat. They don't go into his Transylvanian or Vlad the Impaler background but speak of his time hanging around England. I think this rendition makes him rather Bela Lugosi-like which is appropriate seeing that yesterday was his birthday.
Next up are the ブラウニー Brownie. Not the junior version of the Girl Scouts or the delicious chocolate treat, but rather the little hobgoblins from Scotland. Cute little buggers who like to help out with household chores while you sleep.
Finally we have パック Pucks. Not hockey pucks, rather the mischievous tricksters from mythology.