Saturday, May 22, 2010


So I've been in Japan since January. I'll be leaving this Thursday, after nearly exactly 4 months here. I am feeling about 8 billion different emotions right now, and trying to figure out what that all means is a royal pain in the neck. But I've had an AMAZING experience, and now it's time to go home.

I've visited some incredible places while I've been here, seen some things that I didn't even know existed. There is a lot of history here, and a lot of sights that I could never find in the US. It's crazy being in a place that's been a country for so long, learning all the history behind everything I see (and promptly forgetting it, but hey, I tried).
Some things I've seen/done:
Yasaka Shrine,
Nara Dobutsu,
Osaka (Tennoji, Shinsaibashi, Nipponbashi...),
Roppongi Hills,
Japan Baseball Museum/Hall of Fame,
Imperial Palace in Tokyo,
Shibuya, Harujuku, Shinjuku, Ikebukuro,
Meiji Shrine,
Ueno Koen,
Tennoji Zoo,
Geisha Dances,
and more. I've done SO much... and not to mention the food. Oh, the food here is so great! Bento boxes are probably the world's greatest inventions. Seriously, it's lunch in a box, but it's all fresh and healthy. None of that Doritoes and a soda business. Okonomiyaki is quite probably my favorite, but I love takoyaki, tenpura, tendon, and... oh gosh, just everything. Sweets: mocchi, konpeito... nom. They also eat a lot of curry here, which I am more than ok with.

I've made some amazing friends here, from all over the world. I will never ever ever forget them, and I fully intend to visit every one of them as soon as financially possible. We've all bonded so quickly, and we've made some amazing memories that I will always remember. I will miss them all terribly.

Speaking of friends, I've been introduced to some new Japanese pop culture stuff: an anime called Durarara! which is quite entertaining... another anime called Hetalia, which everyone on the planet should watch, regardless of age, nationality, or interests... a few dramas, namely one called Bloody Monday (which is fantastic) and another called Samurai High School (which is so terrible it's good). There's also Sunao ni Narenakute, which I mostly like because some of the other Seminar House 2 girls and I would watch it in the lounge every week and make fun of it because it's so cheesy... good times. My favorite by far though, is a manga called Kuroshitsuji. The Black Butler. It's FANTASTIC. I'm up to date on the manga, but I still have to watch the anime. It'll happen. There's also the musical which I LOVE, despite the fact that there is exactly one actor in the entire thing who can actually sing. The second musical, which I wont be able to see until October (grrrrrrrrrrrr)... ah me.

There's some pretty good music here, too... discovered Matsushita Yuya by watching Durarara! and the Kuroshitsuji musical... not normally a type of music I'd listen to, but his voice is just so pretty. :) AND in Tennoji there's this particular section of sidewalk that's raised like a bridge over the street, and guys come out with their acoustic guitars, amps, and microphones and just sit and play. Seriously, you can just walk around and listen to whoever you want, buy a cd if they don't suck. It's fantastic. I'm quite sad I only got to go once, but such is life.

I'll be going to Sakaiminato, the hometown of Mizuki Shigeru (the author of GeGeGe no Kitaro, among other things) tonight, and I'll be there all day tomorrow, so that should be fantastic. I'm pretty darn excited, and I plan on taking about a billion pictures. Should be great. :) I'll be back on Tuesday morning, go to karaoke with some friends Tuesday night (have I mentioned how fantastic karaoke is? LOVE it), pack my stuff and chill out on Wednesday, then leave Thursday morning. It's closing in. Weird.

Anyway. I've had a fabulous time here. I really want to and really don't want to leave, all at the same time. That's how it goes, I guess. This trip has kindof made me realize how important it is to travel though. I mean, I never would have gotten this kind of cultural diversity knowledge from a classroom somewhere. It's important to go out and actually experience the things you're learning about. Plus it really helps language skills. ;)

I'm off though. Gotta start packing. ^_^