Saturday, July 7, 2012


It's been a little over a month since I've returned to the states. I guess I've been delaying this post, perhaps because I'm still in denial that I've actually left Japan. It's an odd feeling, being back in the states. It's not reverse culture shock so much as the end of an incredibly important chapter of my life. However, I'd like to think this isn't the end of my adventures in Japan. I *know* I'll return eventually, hopefully within the next 2 years. But somehow, it will never be the same as living in Japan as a KGU student.
Looking back, I realize that through all of my struggles with living in Japan, I cherish even the mundane day-to-day moments, like cramming kanji in a house full of friends now scattered across the globe, or biking to the weekly vegetable sale at fresco supermarket. Getting lost in Makino and being pointed at by children saying 'she's cute for a gaijin'. Quiet bike rides, taking an new route in a mountain and winding up in a random area of an unfamiliar part of town. Babbling in Japanese to yanki, schoolchildren, people I hardly knew, always with that same bemused expression on their faces. Maybe i can't articulate how much I have grown to love Japan, but I can at least say I had grown accustomed to the odd life of a foreigner finding new things, exploring new places everyday. Because even though I've mainly written about sightseeing in major locations, national holidays and the like, there are so many little things that I remember from Japan, things which for the most part didn't even make it to this blog, yet which warm my heart much like hazy childhood memories. And to the people who I shared these memories with- we may have parted with teary eyes, but our memories fill me with happiness. 
I graduated KGU! And also taiko drums...

So there you have it, the truth: leaving Japan is a return to reality. Kansai Gaidai was a dream-world full of adventures with amazing people and lacking real responsibilities. Returning to America, my feelings can be summarized by two words-'now what?'. And even though I miss Japan, I'm glad to return to my family, boyfriend, and real vegetarian food. I'm ready to start my new chapter, no matter how blank the pages seem now.  何とかなるさ!

1 comment:

  1. It should definitely not be the end of your adventures that you have left Japan, just a new chapter :)

    If you do continue to write more blog posts, tell us what it's like living in America and some things you recommend to foreigners planning to go to Japan maybe.