by
on September 20, 2017 on 9/20/17

First Impressions

Hello everyone,

I’ve been in Japan for 2 weeks now, and during that time I’ve done my best to explore Tokyo and meet new people. Overall, it’s been a lot of fun! I stumbled across a festival at a local shrine, went to the beach, visited Yoyogi park, ate some delicious food like ramen and udon, and a lot more. Coming to Japan was a really exciting thing for me, but it also made me quite nervous. I’ve been studying Japanese for the past two years, and while that’s gone well, coming to a place where it’s what everyone speaks is very intimidating. I didn’t realize how much courage it would take just to go to the supermarket and buy some milk! Thankfully I knew the kanji character for “cow” and food products have pictures on them or I might starve here!

Today I took a test to help place me in the right level of Japanese courses when classes begin next week, and I didn’t score as high as I would have liked, which was a bit disheartening. I did, however, get the chance to meet some Japanese university students and talk with them. One girl I spoke with entirely in Japanese for about 20 minutes, which was reassuring that the past two years of study and preparation have done some good. Thanks to that I feel a lot more confident going forward with my adventures here in the land of the rising sun!

Some pork ramen. Much better than the instant noodles we have in America!

This shrine looks fantastic all lit up for the matsuri (festival)! Some locals even did some traditional folk dances!

A typhoon was coming, so I think less people came to the beach because they were worried it would rain a lot that day. I love the way the overcast skies affect the lighting though!