I have nearly spent my first week in Japan (just shy of a few hours)!
The things I have seen, learned and experienced are beyond words. I find it hard to stay up past about 7:00pm. I wake up at about 5:00am and am ready for a nap by 10:00am. I haven’t eaten as much as I do at home because ordering is a challenge for me. Hah! I have eaten the majority of my meals alone and every single meal has been out (because I have to learn to cook)…
Saturday, I rode my bicycle to what I thought was the mall…where I ran into a teacher I had met just last week. That was a SHOCK because I only know a handful of people here and I have met them only within this week. I asked her where I was at and she informed me that I was at a supermarket…(I know…how did I not know the difference?) She pointed me in the right direction of the mall. Once I got there I was overwhelmed with stores, smells and sounds.
I spent a few hours walking around and wandering in and out of shops. The entire time I had the biggest smile on my face as I saw people going on about their days. I had a 20 minute bike ride home, maybe less. I was able to go meet with a friend at the mall later that night. However…the bike ride there at night took be about twice the amount of time and on the way home it took me at least triple the amount of time!!
I’ve officially been lost. I’ve also fallen off my bicycle which I had to laugh about. It reminded me of a bee sting…it’s just one of those things that has to happen every now and then.
Sunday, a friend taught me how to use the bus and find my way to one of the train stations. We spent hours talking and exploring. She helped me figure out things it would have taken me months to figure out. Thank goodness for nice people. Tonight, I walked to the supermarket and got an ice cream cone. Someone told me that I might cut down on my ice cream intake in Japan due to the taste…but the only reason I am cutting down is because you cannot buy quarts here. Walking to the supermarket at night is an ordeal for me…I might not even do that back home since I’m such a baby. I’m overly cautious and afraid of most everything but I’m discovering that a thought is just a thought and a thought can be changed.
The people appreciate when I try to speak Japanese. Sometimes I know I must sound and look like a fool…but I’m okay with that because at least I’m trying. I’ve always envied people who do what I am doing…it’s hard for me to believe that I’m living something I use to dream about. I look out my window from where I am sitting and I see a porch light blinking like it is going to burn out. It is the only thing I have seen each night that remains the same and I find comfort in that.
I have to keep my tattoos covered. I think that my tattoos are friendly and happy but tattoos are not yet accepted here. I cover the ones I can with clothing and the others with band-aids. I thought it was more of a “cover up for work” kind of thing…but it turns out it is better to cover them up any time I am out. When I walk out the door I begin dripping sweat so I wear two shirts now…the first is to absorb the sweat and the second is to try not to show the sweat. At home I swear two shirts just because it’s how I am comfortable…now I wish I could only wear one without it getting soaked. Once I walk in the door my clothes are off as quick as my shoes (which is at the door). I have so many updates I want to share but I cannot think of a way to string them together smoothly and in a timely manner…
To say the least:
The people are friendly, helpful and appreciate any effort I put forward.
The children are SO CUTE. Seems people love the word cute 🙂
Disney is big…and hedgehogs, I LOVE hedgehogs!!
The fabric is BEAUTIFUL and I need a sewing machine ASAP..
People take good care of their pets…
I went to the dentist last week which was a terrifying experience for me, only because of my past dental experiences. You see, I take care of my teeth…but if something is to go wrong, it will. At the dentist, a dear friend who took me under her wing the even before i got here, translated. As I was sitting in the exam chair hearing that my nerve was dying and I needed to get a root canal, the tears started streaming down my cheeks. I’m going to be getting a root canal…(TBD) I was too scared to do it then. I didn’t want to cry and it wasn’t because of dental care in Japan…I just cannot explain the amount of dental pain I have endured and the amount of time/money it has cost me. I hear the dental care here is wonderful- that will be to come.
Everybody at school does their part (I saw the assistant principal mowing the lawn last week, how amazing is that?!)
My bike was making a funny sound…so I was outside fixing it and a stranger stopped and tried to help me. The language barrier made it difficult but I knew he was asking if I needed help and I was able to let him know I had fixed it.
I have will have officially made it up until 9:00pm by the time I get into bed. The list of experiences I have had in a weeks time cannot be written or told. You would have to see it to believe it.