The days leading up to this trip has been filled with assignments and chapter long to do lists. To be honest it’s a bit overwhelming trying to ensure I’ve covered every little detail of everything before I leave. It’s s nerve racking flying to the other side of the world with people you don’t know to spend 12 days working together. I’m not exactly sure what activities we’ll be doing or what exactly is expected of me. I only know where I’m going and for how long. Also, for the first time I’m going to have to be actively aware of my shell-food allergy 24/7 – that’s a bit scary. So, in summary, I’m anxious. However, Japan has been #1 on my list of places I absolutely need to travel to so no matter what happens I’m excited to experience it. I’m honestly already thinking about what I want to do if I ever get to go back (I haven’t even been there yet! haha!). I feel truly blessed that my first time there is not as a tourist but as a student because I get to have the full educational experience and see parts of Japan for what it is and not what the tourism industry has put forth for me to see.
I think my fascination with Japan stems from the fact that many things about the culture is so opposite to my own. Even the most mundane common everyday things that I hear about are intriguing. I’m enthralled by their media and entertainment. It’s the strangest thing I’ve ever come across in my life, but it’s also the first bit of media that I’ve encountered that accurately depicts how my mind works. I love storytelling and writing and I must admit that a lot of my writing is heavily influence by Japanese drama, anime and manga.
I’m excited to experience the culture firsthand, meet new people, try new food and cross another country off my list. I’ve been collecting bracelets for places I’ve travelled to- I’ll attach a picture below. I can’t wait to add a new one to my collection.
This bracelet is the first one I ever got- it’s from Cancun 2015. A guy had set up a booth inside the resort I was staying in and was carving personal designs in coins and attaching them to handmade bracelets. I decided to share this picture because of the symbol I requested to be carved. It’s the logo of One Piece. One Piece is a Shonen manga created by the mangaka, Eiichiro Oda. The manga follows a group of pirates travelling the world, conquering their fears, and following their dreams. It is my biggest inspiration and I hope to get a copy of the manga in the original language when I travel to Japan.