Very unlike me, but it is what it is. Let me just say that I was a little overwhelmed by the whole being in another country; and in Tokyo, one of the busiest cities in the world.
I have been to some large cities and of course New York had a lot of fast paced hustle and bustle, but Japanese people; they are totally hardcore. They are running in designer suits (not your casual morning jog either-I'm taking full on sprint) to make that train or get to their destination. They have places to be and people to see and apparenly the Tokyo workplace does not offer many graces.
I would also like to mention that Japan is light years ahead of the west when it comes to toilets and recycling. Their toilets have remotes and warmed seats and I thought about bringing one back, but I don't think I would have made it through customs. Haha could you imagine? Hey! What's the hold up?" "ehh, this lady is trying to get a toilet back to the states. I'm sure shipping it would be the better solution, but they really should just be selling these in America. On the recycling front; they have bins everywhere designated for each type of recyclable, I think America could learn a lot from this and if it was readily accessible, we would be way more apt to comply.
Well, I can officially say that not only did I cross an item off my bucket list by going out of the country, I one upped myself when my brother made me climb a mountain. I really didn't think I was going to make it to be honest. I thought I was effective when I go to the gym, but apparently I'm a workout slacker.
We got a goodways up the mountain; a mountain that apparently 5th graders in the town are required to hike during their school year (not so great for my self esteem by the fact that 10 year olds can do something I was nearly incapable of doing) when I had to pull myself together. Partly because I wanted to do it and partly because I was way too embarrassed to tell my brother and his friend that hiked with us to leave me behind and that I would live in the mountains with the monkeys (Im hate to say that I didn't see any monkeys). But by telling myself over and over 'you can do this!' 'live life' 'today is a gift' I made it up and down the mountain hours later. I felt like a million dollars and my legs were trembling the way marathon runners do at the end of a race (as pathetic as that is for me to admit).
Japan might be ahead of us in some areas, but America is ahead when it comes to carbs. I went 10 days without eating bread. Unless there is a time I'm blanking on, which is a very real possibility because it has been a lot to take in for me.
From all my experiences here though I think the most valuable lesson I've learned being here is that we all aren't that different after all. Even with a huge ocean and thousands of miles separating us, these people are my neighbors just as much as those living in my neighborhood. They love their kids the way I love mine, they pay outrageous gas prices ($7+/gallon), and they are all just in a pursuit of happiness just like we are. I think we all can relate even if we communicate in different language and have different concepts of personal space.
It's been fun Japan, until next time.