Arriving in Japan land

Coming to Japan has been one of the best things that could have happened to me. I have not only had some of the most amazing experiences of my life so far, but have also grown as a person and overcome so many of the obstacles in my life that have always managed to bring me down. I have learnt to overcome fear of being different, fear of failure and fear of caring so much about what people think. Your life is your own, no one else’s. I feel the biggest lesson I have learnt so far is to do what makes me happy and live each day for that day. For so long I have always looked so far into the future and stressed myself out wondering what I’ll be and how old I will be when this or that happens. I finally feel content to just go with the flow and see where I will be tomorrow or next week rather than in 10 years’ time.
For me, finding out I had won a scholarship to come to Japan and teach English was not only the most exciting news I have ever had, but one of the most terrifying. I had absolutely no idea where I was going to be placed in Japan, what my surroundings were going to be, who I was going to live near and what my new job was going to be like. Saying goodbye to my family and friends and not knowing how long it would be before I saw them was also terrifying. I remember sitting on the plane to Tokyo wondering if I had made the right decision for me or had I just done this because it was impressive to others? Did I really want to go and spend a year in Japan? Did I really want to leave my beautiful home and move to a country that spoke a different language and had a completely different way of life?
The first day I arrived in my new town was one I will never forget. Myself and two other Australia’s on the same programme, were picked up from the airport and driven three hours into what seemed like the middle of nowhere. Our new homes would be in the ‘Inaka,’ which translates to Japans ‘country side’. It was summer and the weather was unbearably hot and muggy. Back home in Auz I don’t ever seem to sweat, but here I remember feeling so disgustingly damp and sticky I didn’t know how to handle it. The one thing that took my mind off it was looking out the window at what surrounded me. I had never seen so many rice paddies and mountains in my life. Everything was so lush and green it seemed almost surreal. Knowing that I was surrounded by nature was such a beautiful and almost relaxing feeling. I couldn’t wait to see what my new house looked like and where it was.
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Let’s just say the first night in my new house was probably one of the top worst nights of my life. I arrived late afternoon to find the water had not yet been turned on therefore I couldn’t have a shower to freshen up or even use the toilet. I decided I would just get changed instead, as it was an hour before we had to meet the other people on the programme and have a dinner. I was so sweaty and in such a frazzled head space that I realised I had forgotten the lock number for my suitcase. After several failed attempts I had to embarrassingly ask the plumber who finally came, if he could cut it open with the pliers from his tool kit.
When I was finally able to have a shower, it had turned dark outside. I became aware that I hadn’t really paid attention to what was behind my house, whether there were bushes, whether I had neighbours that could see straight into my bathroom window that had no curtains.. I had no idea. The one thing I did notice was the massive spider that was sitting on the inside of the window staring at me. One of my most hated things in this world besides cockroaches, are spiders. I jumped out of the bath/shower tub as fast as I could, but as I did this I managed to rip down the shower head and fall flat on my face. ‘Dadddddddddd where are you there’s a spiderrrrrr!!!’’ oh that’s right, you’re in Australia and I’m in Japan 4000 miles away from home. Living out of home and by my self was obviously new to me. I will admit I slept with the lights on the whole night and even cried myself to sleep. However, the following morning was a new day. I woke up and realised I had made it, I was here in Japan, I had an amazing experience ahead of me and was ready for my next challenge.
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