So far, I have been in Japan for one whole month, it’s so exciting! I have had the pleasure of having many eye-opening and once-in-a-lifetime experiences. In this blog post, I will share more about my experiences and my thoughts on them.
School, and Internship
I love my internship. Talking with the students is enjoyable, and gives me insight into the culture of Japan, specifically the culture of younger people. So far, I have made friends with many of the students through various club activities, talking in class, or striking up conversations in the hallway. Talking with the students is the highlight of my day, and as I have gotten more confident talking with them, I enjoy the conversations more and more. Usually, the conversations revolve around school, hobbies, and favorite things, but sometimes I have more in-depth conversations about goals or life advice. Those deeper conversations are more engaging and what makes me the most excited to talk with people. Sometimes, the student might not speak much English, and that is ok. Throughout my time here, especially during International Week, I have been using much more Japanese. It is very useful because I can be used as a translator for the sister-school guests, most of whom cannot speak Japanese. My Japanese has certainly improved, but that may just be due to the confidence boost that speaking it more frequently gives me. Regardless, speaking with the students is much easier now because of my improvement, which is another reason I enjoy our conversations more. These conversations also keep me refreshed. I notice that the more time I spend alone, the more often I start missing my family and friends at home. This is the longest I have ever traveled, so I get lonely easily. However, the students help a lot with this, and they keep me too engaged and interested for me to be lonely. I am fortunate to be able to interact with these amazing people.
Every Weekend, I have been trying to go somewhere interesting to make the most out of my time here. Since my last post, I have done even more:
Tokyo National Museum in Ueno
Sunshine City in Ikebukuro
Narita (mostly just in the airport)
Tried Okinawan Food
Tried Dango (cooked mochi with a sweet topping)
Tried Wagyu Beef Ramen
Bought 10 different kinds of Kit Kats
Tried Japanese American-style fast food (i.e. McDonald’s, KFC, Starbucks, etc), because they are very different from their American counterparts.
Technos has an annual event with its sister schools called “International Week”. This year, 35 individuals have come here to experience Japan for two weeks. It is a student-led project and has kept everyone very busy for the past few weeks leading up to it. As a native English speaker, my role in this has been to check English material (scripts, instructions, presentations, etc.) and translate conversations when needed. However, I oftentimes feel that the students are doing such a good job, I do not have to do much work outside of the preparation, it is nice to see that some of the students who are typically very shy in English classes, use the knowledge that they have learned in class and talk to the native English speakers with confidence. It has been a great event so far, but recently due to the volume of work (and the fact I ran out of allergy medication), I have not been sleeping very well. I hope to catch up on much-needed sleep this weekend so I can be refreshed for more international week events next week.
I enjoy all the time that I spend here, and I will try to fill the rest of my time here with as many memorable experiences as I can.