Thirteen months ago, I uprooted my life. Freshly minted college graduate, bright-eyed, eager to take on the world, insert your choice “ready to start my adult life” adjective here. I shipped off to Aomori, Japan to become an ALT – Assistant Language Teacher – at the prestigious Aomori Prefectural High School. The past year has been a whirlwind of many unbelievable heights, a few foxhole-esque trenches, and countless “oh sweet Powers That Be, I live in Japan!” surreal moments. Yet as I looked back over my first year in Japan, I realized that I didn’t have anything to show for it, at least in documented form. Nothing that I’d be able to read in five years to reminisce about, aside from loads o’ short, succinct tweets.
While I’d always intended to start a blog (even if those intentions only existed in the farthest, cobweb-infested back corner of my mind), somehow the weeks turned into months, and eventually those months turned into a year. And still no blog. Today, that changes (finally).
I’m not really sure what changed to light the fire underneath me to finally get this thing up and running. I could give some poetic reasoning about how the muse just suddenly struck today, but in all honesty…I’m bored at work. I have three more hours to kill. I haven’t written in ages and I miss doing it. So I figured, “better late than never.” Here I’ll post about the daily adventures I encounter in my life in the “blue forest.” Trust me, there are many:
Language barrier? Check. My Japanese skill set, on a good day, is about that of a kindergartner.
Cultural barrier? Check. …wait, I have to clean tatami mats? How? Why? When? What do you mean, they’ll grow mold if I don’t?!
Physiological barrier? (That sounds weird, but I don’t know how else to phrase it.) Check. I am blonde. I am blue-eyed. I am tall. I stick out like a California roll filled with imitation crabmeat on a plateful of authentic, high-end sushi.
Thanks for reading, and hopefully I’ll keep you coming back for more.