Friday, September 17, 2010

The Good Life

Time to just be current, even if I'm way behind (on posting and even replying to your kind comments - I will, and, truly, thank you). More pictures, 9 months worth, will come sporadically, here and there, now and then. If I try to play catch up, I'll be overwhelmed and will never update. Again. It breaks something inside my Messy Tessy but Neat and Tidy little mind, but I may as well step out of my comfort zone and live on the edge. Wheee!

So, life is good. Yes, while I was MIA, I signed on for another year of Japan and another year on the JET Program. Really, it's kind of hard not to love this life I get to live. My dear Tom is still holding down the fort with the meow faces (and he's been here to visit me, and I there to visit him, and modern technology like Skype completely rocks), and we agreed that another year makes sense. The money isn't at all bad, the job market at home isn't at all good, I just became debt free (w00t!) and am ready to start seriously saving money, and I'm having a really super awesome good time here.

With the combination of an excellent transportation system and being surrounded by mostly younger people (though the one even older than I am is the nuttiest and most wild of the group), I spend a lot of time out and about reliving the college days I didn't really have, and it's been a ton of fun. Back home, I rarely go out. It's expensive, I don't believe in drinking and driving, and it's just different. Here, I make a point of being out and about in the city. If I miss my last train, I can stay out until the first one of the morning at some all night karaoke place. I can't sing well, at all, and nobody cares. A lot of them are not all that great either, but it's fun.

About half of our group of 10 that arrived at the same time last year has left, and it was really hard to say goodbye to people I'd grown so close to and got used to seeing on a somewhat regular basis for dinner, drinks, karaoke and hilarity in between. Doing this thing that I am doing, you expect to meet Japanese people, but in reality, you make really good friends with people from all around the world, the other foreigners, the other JETs, here doing the same thing. We got a whole new batch of folks (more than twice the size of my incoming group of 10), and already some friendships are forming. It's different from our small group, but it's good in a different way, maybe. Some of us went to a ridiculous but fun Cat Cafe where you pay about $12 to have a cup of coffee and spend time with cats in a room. Only in Japan. Well, I hear, now other parts of Asia, too, but as odd as it is, it is not surprising. This kind of stuff continues to amuse me and make it fun to be here.

I traveled all over Japan last year, seeing every place I should have seen last time (yes, later, sometime, pictures), and this year I am expanding a bit. I leave for South Korea on Sunday for five days. How many times over the past decade I've wished I'd gone when I lived here before, and now, it's happening. I've learned to mostly read Korean (it's easier than you think, easier than Japanese) and can say "hello," "beer please," "(whatever food item), please", "thank you," "you're welcome," "where is the bathroom," "do you speak English?," "can you speak Japanese?" (many do), and I'm hoping that's enough. I do not even know how to say "my name is..." Also, the numbering system is confusing because there are two of them, so, if needed, I will resort to gestures or just writing numbers on paper. It's not like I never have to resort to stick people drawings here in Japan where I supposedly can speak the language some.

So, yes, I am back, still, I think, but I will be gone for about a week. When I return, there will be pictures of South Korea, and I will feel like I'm skating on the edge by skipping ahead to current. I do what I want. I'm living the very good life, indeed, and I know well enough to appreciate it and live it to the fullest as best I can. Thank you for letting me share it with you, too.

11 comments:

  1. and I will savour the words that you share, when you wish to share. glad you are back Maggie

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  2. Oh hurrah! I'm glad that your adventure is going well, and that its all working out peachy for you. Thats awesome! :)

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  3. It all sounds so fabulous. I will just have to live vicariously. ;)
    So glad you are happy and enjoying life so much. :)

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  4. I'm so glad you are getting more time in Japan, but also glad to hear Tom is still holding down the fort. I was afraid to ask (and it's none of my business). :)

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  5. I'm excited about seeing more photos of your adventures, and am glad for you that you have the chance to venture out to see more of your beautiful adopted country.

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  6. Looks like you're having the time of your life! I'm so happy for you, this is after all a very unique opportunity!

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  7. So happy to see you back...I was starting to wonder where the heck you were! big ((hugs))

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  8. I've been waiting for this. Bring it on.

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  9. I'm so glad to see you back and posting!! I have really missed your posts, so I hope you really are back!!

    I think it's great that you're taking extra time in Japan. I'm so jealous of the opportunity!!

    -Jac(Formerly Wuzzle Makes Three!)

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  10. I just loved this, Maggie. Besides the odd update on FB I really wasn't sure where you were (home or there) for a long time. Anyway, it's so nice to read your posts and see your pictures again. You've got such a pleasant blog demeanor and I've missed it!

    Love to you, M xo

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