Saturday, February 21, 2015

Life in Japan or why I might never be an adult but I don't care

Today's post is a bit special, it's about the difference between living in France and living in Japan. I guess that's what I get when I ask people for a topic for the dreaded Saturday blog post and someone actually answer (you might even have these weird posting for several weeks, if I'm lucky). 

The truth is I have been out of France for so long (almost 9 years), that I don't even remember what it is like to actually live there, especially that when I was there I was in Rennes and Nantes and Toulouse and Paris... (I guess that's about it).  Then before going to Japan, I lived in Belfast, which was already something else but I disgress. Anyway back to our sheeps... (And happy Chinese New Year!)

So when I first arrived in Japan, I discovered that unless you know some basic kanjis you won't get anywhere. I mean in France you can still read something. In Japan, you can't because... kanjis. Except I knew my kanji and managed to get to where I was going. But the kanjis are everywhere, especially in Tokyo seeing the number of signs and advertisements, so somehow, I think people must be trying very hard not to read them, seriously. 

When you get to Japan, there are a lot of things that are allowed, or maybe I should say that are socially acceptable, while you would almost be lynched for them in France. Let's be serious a little, an adult in France doesn't watch "cartoon" (evolved people call that anime), doesn't put little teddy bears on his bag, doesn't eat with a spoon (except for soup), doesn't forget it's camera in the train (yes, in Japan you can and you'll get it back (still don't try, just in case it was repeated luck))...

Going to live in Japan made me feel 10 years younger than I was when I lived in France and that shows even on my face, people still believe I'm a student which I'm definitely not anymore! I was 26 when I arrived in Japan, 10 years younger made me 16 years old, so I guess by now I'm 11. It's the Benjamin Button syndrome on a geographical base.

Living in Japan makes a lot of things easier, you get more international friends than when you live in your own country as well and they all somehow speak English (which is terrible for you so stay away from international people). It's also very easy to make friends with Japanese people, if you can manage to say hi, they might be friend with you, really I'm not kidding, that's all it takes. I remember being so shy when I was in France that I was standing alone at a party and only Chinese students came to talk to me so that I happened to only have Chinese students as friends in the university accomodation in Paris. In Japan, I'm the less shy of the group so no matter what I do I look like an out-going bee, which is fun, I like being the bee.

I probably forgot a lot of things so I might write about it another day. For the moment thank you for reading and have fun whatever you do!

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