travel2japan #57 Please speak Japanese
So, I was in Japan as an exchange student. And wrote diary; approximately three pages every single day. As I think it may be interesting translating the thoughts of an exchange student in Japan, I'm now going to do this.
Some background information:
I was in Japan from March to July 2015(4 1/2 month). I lived in Chiba with a host family.
I went there with the organization WYS (Word Youth Society).
Here we go.
(The text written in italics are comments, I added in retrospect)
#57 Please speak Japanese
Real date: May 6th, TuesayWednesday
Today morning was shit. My alarm rang at 5 o'clock, I studied a bit with my smartphone and then slept till 7 o'clock, when I rushed to get ready. While Wakari san was going for a stroll, me and Kouta san watched TV. When I asked something, he answered only in English, although I said: 'Please speak Japanese' several times. I went to the toilet and cried a bit. Yesterday, I had the feeling that it went upwards and now I am sad again. When Wakari san prepared breakfast, I offered my help but I just annoy her. At the breakfast table, we watched TV and spoke a bit. When Wakari san asked me something and I did not understand, Kouta san explained it to me in English, despite of me saying: 'Please speak Japanese'. Why do they always speak English? I am pleasing them to speak Japanese so often; don't they liste to me? I do not understand at all and I am sad.
Because I ate breakfast quickly, my stomach now hurts. We will go to the beach today. Now I am alone at the breakfast table. Now I still have about three month here in Japan. It feels really long. Everyday I am looking forward to receiving a letter.
We went to the library. I saw a couple of comic books all explaining a certain topic, for example noodles, the weather or make up. There was even one about bras! I lended one about Gyudon noodles and one about school uniforms. Because I want to go to Tokyo, Wakari san lend a Tokyo guide for me, so nice! After going to the library, we went in the 7 11 under the library building, where Wakari san did something. On the way to the library, I met one girl from my music class and Makoto (from my class) I somehow think, my hostparents expected me to speak more with Makoto that just 'Hello'. In the library, I saw Kei senpai (senpai= person from higher grade, in this case the club leader). Japanese students study a lot, preferably in the library. Really impressive.
After returning home, Wakari san prepared for the beach. She packed some cookies from my recent present, picnick sheets, camp- chairs and a book. Quickly, we headed off. At a shop called 'Big House', we bought obentos. In the car, I talked a bit with my host family. At the beach, we directly ate our obentos and then sat there, talked a bit and relaxed. When I went to the toilet, one toilet was really dirty. We stayed at the beach for a long time, but it was a bit cold. On the way home, we halted at a vegetable shop and bought something. I was really tired.
At home, me and Wakari san did something absoulutely amazing. Together, we made my own calligraphy stamps! (With stamps, you often sign your own papers in Japan). We made stamps of my name in Katakana and Kanji (chinese characters) and wrote my last name in Kanji. With these stamps, we signed two of my drawn calligraphies.
I am really tired. Wakari san unpacked a package for her; it was coffee. She then went to her room and now, Kouta san and me are watching TV. I am very tired.
Now I want to tell you something about Japanese meals: (only my own experience!)
In Home Economics class, everyone learns to cook 'the right way'. At home, always the mother cooks at a certain time. Till that time, everybody waites for the meal. Sometimes, they do eat something before or after the meal. The food is arranged very pretty and always a lot of diffrent dishes are used. Then, the family tells the mother, how mcuh they like their food, I guess. People also take obentos to their work or school and eat it all during the lunch break. They somethimes eat a little before or after. They also somethimes buy the obento or eat in a restaurant. When they meet in a restaurant and the food for one person arrives, he or she just starts eating immediately. Sometimes, there is also a lot of food put in the middle of the table and everyone can take from the dish, he likes. People would either eat a whole meal or no meal at all.
They eat very quickly and the food is often very hot. I do not really understand. When the meal is arranged and prepared so pretty, why would you haste so much eating it?! I cannot always enjoy it.
Often, fish, meat or vegetables are eaten as well as some eggs. Milk products are not so common. The bread, that is eaten sometimes, is white and sweet. The food is sometimes hot and spicy. They eat an amazingly huge amount of rice.
Dinner and lunch are hot meal, after one of them, desert is served. As for breakfast, there is sometimes some warm food on the plate. The desert is icecream or a sweet, but they do not make their own sweets. Breakfast and lunch are eaten very early for my standards. At weekends, at least one meal is eaten out. Water and tea is dranken a lot of the time.
While eating, people often watch TV and talk. Sometimes, we also eat some spicy crisps while watching TV. There is also some instant food that is eaten but most food consists of raw ingreadients.
I think that was all. (One thing left: I love Japanese food)
I think, we might eat out today. Tomorrow, I will go to school again. Golden Week was long. In TV, there are currently a lot of shows about animals in zoos. Oh, Wakari san came just in and started preapring dinner.
Japanese meals are my dream. Now, my life is my dream and my dream is my life. I still cannot really believe that I am actually in Japan now. It feels so unreal, this whole thing. Really.
We ate dinner.
Tomorrow, there will be school again. I am looking forward to this. Good night.
I hope, you liked that part!
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