Having been to japan 3 years prior to travelling overseas with our university, i had a lot that i expected of japan, and the culture that went with it. but i of course knew that nothing would be what i expected even if i have experienced the culture before. Travelling from USC to NUFS was an experience in itself from boarding the first plane after saying goodbye to family and best friends, to landing at my first transfer, hiccups happen but the best thing to do its keep on moving (quote: just keep swimming like dory because it works), arriving at my host institution after making it from the airport i landed in Kansai, Osaka all the to NUFS in Aichi, Nagoya; arriving there on time in one piece feels like i just conquered half the world, and maybe lost half my brain from sleep deprivation. After arriving and settling in i met all my fellow students who of which many became great friends; everyone is always happy to chat. Though the coming first two weeks were grueling with placement Tests and legal forms and lectures on them, it was one new thing being thrown at me after another however i coped, While many other student from other countries found it hard to adjust i felt at ease surprisingly. After being here for about 2 Months already with all the new people i have met and all the different cultural backgrounds i have learnt about i wouldn’t change this experience for anything else.
My first major trip came with Nara and Tennoji temple a famous temple in japan where deer live and are considered messengers of the gods. Having been there on my last school trip i felt like a bit of a navigator in Nara city showing my friends where to go and what i already knew about the area, the religious culture and age of every building is so great it is a wonder people who live here don’t realize how immense and withstanding their culture is; coming from Australia where our culture has a very short period of time of existing having a building 200 or more years old would be wondrous.
My second trip came with a few good friends to Ise Jingu shrine, travelling by train like many have said and i already knew is all just a matter of ‘how long will it take?’ and not ‘how long do we wait for the train?’, so making it to Ise shrine we saw a beautiful hidden shrine over the famous stretched bridge, we prayed at the shrines and explored the area, seeing a entrance to the small river, me and my friends went to get a photo and as i touched the water i as a local Queenslander had never felt water any colder in nature than i had then, and i think that’s when I realised i had travelled all the way to the northern hemisphere and that winter was yes, winter was coming :o.
So for now ill leave it there I am having an amazing time so far and it is only the first few months, i could ramble on even more but summarizing this experience is just not easy, there is too much to talk about.