Thank You, Japan

Well, my stay in this country has ended.

I have to say that my life in Japan has been absolutely amazing. Though it definitely was not easy at first, I found that some of the most difficult things to do in life are the things that are worth doing. Being as introverted as I am, and having never even left my home state before, it was a big jump to travel across the world all on my own. Yet, I stepped over 5,000 miles outside my comfort zone to live in a country that — in almost every way — is completely opposite from mine.

For three and a half months.

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Lessons From a Samurai

If you had told me four months ago that I would have the chance to be able to swing a real katana, I probably would’ve laughed in your face. I would respond with something like, “No way, I’m way too clumsy for that.” However, a few weeks ago I got to do just that, and I learned quite a bit from it too.

Some friends and I had been planning a trip to Japan for some time. One of the reasons we went was that one of my friends was from Japan and was about to start a summer internship in Tokyo. So, jumping at the opportunity, we decided to have a last hurrah before the end of the semester and the four of us proceeded to book our tickets and accommodations.

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It’s the Little Things in Life

Obviously, when traveling across the ocean to live on the other side of the world, you find that things tend to be quite different. Sure there are the obvious differences you find here in Japan, like temperature being measured in Celsius, the use of the metric system and driving on the left side of the road.

However, there are so many little things that I’ve noticed that I find rather interesting. Here are some unexpected differences that I found while living in Tokyo!

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Life at TUFS

I could talk about all the places I’ve visited while living in Tokyo, but for this post, I have decided to stay on campus and address my life at Tokyo University of Foreign Studies.

The school is a language school. In Japanese it is called 東京外国語大学; The literal translation is Tokyo foreign language university. The school teaches more than 20 different languages, and since the school is a language school, I’m not sure that math or science is even taught here.

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One Last Trip to Cap Off a Year in Asia

Hello again, San Diego State! This is my last blog since I will soon return to San Diego after a full academic year of living in Singapore. In this post I will show you my last trip before heading home to conclude the great year abroad I’ve had.

The reason I chose Asia as my study abroad destination in the first place was to visit Japan. It was one of those bucket list destinations that I had to fulfill. I waited until my spring break in Singapore so I could see the famous East Asian cherry blossom trees in full bloom. Well, the wait was worth it because this past spring I got to visit Japan for a whole week.

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The World of Food in Tokyo

食べ物、食品、食堂、レストラン。

All of these words have one thing in common; they are all related to food. Food is an important part of any culture, so it seems appropriate to discuss my experience with the food here in Japan.

My last supper in America was leftover food I had from The Cheesecake Factory. Eleven and a half hours later, my world of food had changed completely.

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Alone in Japan

There is so much I have experienced and learned in just my first few days of living in Tokyo, but I would first like to mention that this whole trip was made possible mainly through the funding I received from the Gilman Scholarship.

Anyway, now that I am here, I would like to give an organized mess of my initial thoughts of being in this country. Having never traveled or left home before, my thoughts and feelings may be a little sporadic.

Here goes:

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