In high school I always wanted to get away. Not that I wasn’t happy at home, I just wanted to see what the world had to offer. I really didn’t care where I just wanted to get out there. I ended up in Hawaii after much prodding from my mom to decide on a university to attend. Frustrated, seeking any criteria to narrow it down, she poked and prodded until finally I said I wanted to go somewhere warm. Exasperated she exclaimed well “why don’t you go to Hawaii or something?” I don’t think she thought I would take this suggestion seriously, but I most certainly did. Getting on the plane I knew I was leaving home behind, but I never imagined that it would be permanent. Continue reading →
Change is not always bad. An odd thing to learn from Japan. This is a country where time honed tradition and history always seem to trump innovation and modernization. You can drink tea, eat ramen and watch sumo, and get the exact same experience as you would have a hundred years ago. Japan’s reputation is as a country with a long memory and a short tolerance for change. Continue reading →
Public transit in Asia in general has been quite unreasonably exciting for me. I really appreciate the ease and comfort that the intricate system of trains and buses offered both in Korea and Japan.
One thing that I have realized, however, is that I have, or perhaps had, a very low tolerance for breaches in personal space. Growing up in suburbia, there aren’t a lot of personal space restrictions, and the US isn’t exactly the most densely populated country. Here in Asia however, I have found myself uncomfortably squished, packed and crowded into planes, trains, automobiles and a variety of other means of transportation. Continue reading →
No, senpai is not a great ninja art or a badass attack akin to the Hadouken or Kamehameha. Senpai is a title given to a senior member of an organization or social order. Its most common use is in school among students of different grades, however it extends into the workplace and life as a whole in Japan. Continue reading →