Blogs edited and submitted by Chiho Kamioka

JOI Support staff and manager.

  • Categories
    Categories Displays a list of categories from this blog.

Toudai moto Kurashi

Posted by on in Japanese language
  • Font size: Larger Smaller
  • Hits: 2965
  • Subscribe to this entry
  • Print

Japanese proverbs

There are many proverbs (or Kotowaza or Kanyoku) in the Japanese language. Some are based on 4 character Kanji, and some are idiomatic phrases. They are an interesting area of Japanese vocabulary and grammar learning.

Many Japanese manga and literature make use of these phrases and there is a certain art to quoting pertinent proverbs to illustrate a point in a conversation. If a learner of the Japanese language can make good use of these cultural phrases, it is very impressive to the native listeners and is a highly recommended way to express yourself.

This blog by Inada sensei, a Japanese teacher at JOI that specializes in Intermediate and Advanced Japanese especially for the JLPT N2 introduces one of these proverbs.

Toudai moto Kurashi


By INADA Junko


「灯台もと暗し」ということわざがあります。 灯台のすぐ下はかえって暗いことから、身近な事情はわかりにくいというたとえです。

先日大いなる危機に陥りました。パソコンの動きが鈍くなり、「ハードディスクが破損しています。」 という不吉な文字が画面に浮かび上がってきたのです。オンライン講師にとってパソコンは生命線。。。

とりあえずバックアップをとって(半日ほどかかりました)メーカーに問合せたところ、(電話がなかなかつながりません) 修理には5日ほどかかりデータは消え、費用は〇円とのこと。新しいパソコンが一台買える程の金額です。 インターネットで修理してくれる店を探しましたが、どこも日数がかかります。

「どうしよう。。」悩みながらとりあえず、近所のスーパーに買い物に向かうと、ふと途中の商店街にある パソコンスクールが目にとまりました。だめでもともとと店内に入り、パソコンの指導をしている男性に状況を 話したところ、「とりあえず見せてください。」とのこと。大急ぎで家に戻り、持ち込みます。 「あ~、これなら交換で直りますね。明後日にはお渡しできます。」 2日間の入院で修理されたパソコンが戻ってきました。金額は1/5でした。


To listen to this blog, please watch our Youtube video.


「灯台(とうだい)もと暗(くら)し」ということわざがあります。 灯台(とうだい)のすぐ下(した)はかえって暗(くら)いことから、身近(みぢか)な事情(じじょう)はわかりにくいという たとえです。


とりあえずバックアップをとって(半日(はんにち)ほどかかりました)メーカーに問合(といあわ)せたところ、 (電話(でんわ)がなかなかつながりません)修理(しゅうり)には5日ほどかかりデータは消(き)え、費用(ひよう)は 〇円とのこと。新(あた)しいパソコンが一台(いちだい)買(か)える程(ほど)の金額(きんがく)です。 インターネットで修理(しゅうり)してくれる店(みせ)を探(さが)しましたが、どこも日数(にっすう)がかかります。

「どうしよう。。」悩(なや)みながらとりあえず、近所(きんじょ)のスーパーに買(か)い物(もの)に向(む)かうと、ふと途中(とちゅう)の商店街(しょうてんがい)にあるパソコンスクールが目(め)にとまりました。 だめでもともとと店内(てんない)に入(はい)り、パソコンの指導(しどう)をしている男性(だんせい)に状況(じょうきょう)を話(はな)したところ、「とりあえず見(み)せてください。」とのこと。大急(おおいそ)ぎで家(いえ)に戻(もど)り、 持(も)ち込(こ)みます。 「あ~、これなら交換(こうかん)で直(なお)りますね。明後日(あさって)にはお渡(わた)しできます。」 2日間(ふつかかん)の入院(にゅういん)で修理(しゅうり)されたパソコンが戻(もど)ってきました。金額(きんがく)は1/5でした。

地元(じもと)の商店街(しょうてんがい)も捨(す)てたものではありません。 「灯台もと暗し」とはまさにこのことですね。


Toudai moto Kurashi

There is a proverb in Japanese which goes, “Toudai moto Kurashi” (meaning “the darkest place is at the foot of the lighthouse”). Right under a lighthouse is ironically dark, so it means that situations that are close to you are difficult to understand.

The other day I was plunged into what could have been a big crisis. My computer's operation became slow and an ominous message popped up onto the screen stating that , “Your Hard Disk has been damaged”. For an online teacher, the computer is a lifeline...

So anyway I did a back-up (which took about half a day), called the maker's support (it was difficult to get the telephone to go through) and was told that repair would take 5 days, all data would be lost and it would cost X amount of yen. The figure they gave was about the same amount it would cost to purchase a new computer. I searched online for place that would do repairs but they all stated it would take a few days.

“What should I do ?” I was thinking to myself worryingly, as I set out to do some shopping at a nearby supermarket when I came across a computer school in the shopping arcade on my way there.

I went in, since I had nothing to lose, and explained the situation to man who was teaching about computers, and he answered, “Let me have a look at it.” I rushed home and brought the computer back with me. “ Oh,” he said, “This part needs to be exchanged. I can have it back to you the day after tomorrow.” So after 2 days 'hospitalization' my repaired computer returned to me. The cost was just one fifth of the first price.

So the local shopping arcade was not a option to overlook after all. It was one of those “Toudai moto Kurashi” things.

生命線 : lifeline

だめでもともと: giving something a try because one has nothing to lose


Konnichiwa ! My name is Junko Inada. I am currently living in Tokyo but I grew up in the next prefecture, Kanagawa overlooking the ocean and Mt. Fuji.

My hobbies are salsa ( Latin dance and music). I have made a lot friends of different ages and nationalities through salsa. But if you are able to understand your partner's language, you can get along even better.

What inspired you to learn Japanese ? What are you interested in ? What are you into recently ? Let's talk about everything in the classes. Lets study and talk a lot together. I'll be waiting in the classroom.

Start 3 Trial FlexLessons for only $9 !

Last modified on


  • No comments made yet. Be the first to submit a comment

Leave your comment

Guest Saturday, 25 September 2021