The feeling of belonging is a feeling that everyone requires. Whatever allows us to belong it becomes instinctual for us as human beings assert ourselves in such groups or communities.
Getting off the train and into a taxi in Japan really showed me what belonging meant. I attempted to ask the taxi driver if he could speak any English, of course he couldn’t speak any. What surprised me was how much Japanese I knew to aid my driver in finding the hostel. I remember the last night in Tokyo, I was in a similiar situation. The taxi driver complimented my Japanese and said I sounded like a native speaker much to my surprise.
I really did feel like I belonged. More importantly it gave me encouragement to want to live in Japan. I can see how inspired I felt, and how it made want to be something. You need to go where you can be your best. It really is Japan for me. Absolute love.
So anybody here studied or worked in Japan?
JET seminars are on again in a couple of weeks. The questions I have regards how to better my chances towards securing a spot, which includes questions about my references and how to get a better reference who can attest to my skill. I am scraping the bucket right now on who I could ask to write a reference letter for me; let alone figure out how to write some form to get me a spot. I really want this, I really do.
Okay I think he has a girlfriend by the fact that he has his arms around her.
Memorable scenarios of Japan? Firstly before I go anywhere please buy your JR Pass before entering Japan. You cannot buy it in Japan! It will save you at least a grand! But nevertheless feeling giddy on the plane with Peter, I kept thinking, “I am finally going to be in Japan”. I basically said something similar the whole trip. Japan really is like some fairy tale for the westerner because its culture is such an opposite of Western countries. Stepping into Narita airport; my first test of the language came thick and fast as I soon realised English skills were extremely limited, even in an airport. Furthermore, unfortunately (or rather fortunately) the locals assumed I was Japanese. How? The Japanese just spoke to me in Japanese straight away. Sometimes I could understand, most of the time I could not. Nevertheless, it is all part of traveling.
First noticeable thing was the train announcement being spoken in a whiny Californian English accent. This was followed with the high pitched Japanese that I expected to be accompanied by. Korean and mandarin soon followed after. Outside; all I could see was a sea of green. Grass was everywhere! Contrary to the burnt Australian land. Confusion follows and we get lost trying to even exit the train and the station. It is not helped by the exhausting humidity, but hey, we are in Japan and who cares.
We finally get to Asakusa; an old part of Tokyo only to find girls in kimono haplessly running about while old men stare at the pornography store and the uncensored posters on the front behind caricatures where parents frolic to photograph their lost children. The phrase ‘Only In Japan’ becomes a common phrase from here on.
Five minutes later we get to our hotel. A colossal gathering of fat American tourists, French cosplayers and rich Chinese businessmen congregate here. Two Aussies with a signature drawl have rocked up here. We are ready for the two and a week adventure. Bring it on we thought!