So today I decided to write this post in English to change it up a bit.
I am going to talk about my first time in Japan. All of my life I had dream of going backpacking in Europe. Eating paella in Spain, seeing the Eiffel Tower in France, the leaning tower of Pisa and beautiful beach front houses in Greece. That plan quickly changed after my boyfriend had to go back to Japan suddenly. With the quick departure back to his home country and no real chance to say goodbye I decided to go see him in Japan.
The flight was the first one I have taken by myself. I bought my ticket and was off to Chicago for my first layover. Since Ken had to leave so suddenly I had to bring his things back to Japan. So there I was, with three suitcases trying to make my way through customs at Person Airport. After finally checking in my two suitcases I got on the plane. Now I am not very picky but this was one of the worst planes I have ever been on. The plane was extremely small to the point that one person could barely go through the walkway.
Luckily my connecting flight was with Japan airlines. It was amazing, the food was great and so were the movies and service. After traveling for 16 hours, I arrived in Japan and of course I took pictures of everything around me. The payphone, vending machines and convenience stores. As soon as I got though customs there was Ken with his parents and sister. Of course this was the first time I met them. At that time there was a HUGE language barrier. Although I had tried studying Japanese by myself prior to meeting them, it obviously didn’t work. After the 3 hour ride to Ken’s hometown in Omiya, we were dropped off at the hotel.
My first week in Japan was filled with a lot of interesting adventurous. I ate lots of Japanese food such as sushi, ramen and don katsu. Of course the most interesting of these experience were sushi and ramen. When we got to the ramen restaurant there was a ticket machine outside. In Canada we don’t have anything like this. I was so shocked at the fact that you pay for your food at what looks like a vending machine, get a ticket and then have someone make it for you. It seems like a smart and efficient idea that can be useful in Canada. But sushi was the show stopper. As I was sitting down there were sushi chefs in tall hats putting on an art show in front of me. There was an array of fish, some as simple as sashimi to amazing looking maki. This is nothing like I had ever seen in Canada. Although it was simple, fish and rice was all that was necessary the taste of the fresh fish tasted like it just came straight from the ocean. There was make it yourself green tea. Cup and an box full of match powder. Beside it was your own personal tap that poured boiling hot water to make your tea. It is something that is very hard to replicate outside of Japan.
Karaoke was a whole different experience in its self. This is the first time I have heard of 飲み放題（のみほうだい）which stands for all you can drink. In Canada you can’t even drink alcohol outside let alone do all you can drink in 2 hours. Of course everyone was completely wasted. The room was filled with almost twenty people doing karaoke. This wasn’t your typical sit down and watch your friends to Karaoke, it was hardcore. There were tambourines, gorilla mask and guys taking off their clothes. In Canada we go out with our friends and have a good time but it’s so different. It seems that in Japan people hang out in really big groups during university. Ken said his friends from university do that every year.
This post is actually starting to get quite long so I think I will do a part 2.