I’m leaving Japan to move home to America in 34 days, 1 hour, 59 minutes and 54 seconds. (But who’s counting?!) Well, technically I’m going to Europe, then moving back to good old Maryland. I have a countdown on my iPad but I had to remove it from the homescreen because I would obsessively watch the date and time. Sometimes I get so excited about moving home that I get butterflies and I can’t sleep. I haven’t been this excited about anything since I went to Disneyworld in 4th grade! Don’t get me wrong: I’ve done some pretty awesome things that I’ve gotten excited over, but moving back to my native country after a year and a half away is the most exciting thing I’ve experienced.
What am I excited about? Here’s my list:
My family: I talk to my mom every week, but its not the same as seeing her. Sometimes we even Skype, but its still not the same. My dad writes me emails and texts me, and he’ll even shout in the background when I’m on the phone with my mom, but it will be great to see him. My brother isn’t the best communicator so we’ve only talked here and there since I’ve been in Japan, but he’s a great communicator in person. My grandma, the woman I want to be when I grow up, is still living with my family and says she has missed me dearly (as I’ve missed her).
My dog: OMG. I. HAVE. MISSED. MY. DOG. Sometimes my mom would hold her up to the computer when we would Skype and Lady would respond to my voice. It killed me. I. CAN’T. WAIT. TO. SEE. MY. DOG.
My friends: A lot has happened since I’ve moved to Japan. Some friends moved away, some had babies, others started Grad school. While I don’t have the expectation that things will be the same when I get back to MD, I know that I will be able to pick back up with those I love.
Salads: I don’t know if I’ve mentioned my inability to eat salads with chopsticks. I tried when I first moved here, but it was always a failure, so I gave up. Also, salads are not always full of green leafy lettuce here; sometimes its baby corn and snow peas. I’m really looking forward to eating salads again.
photo credit: www.123rf.com
Going to the doctor: It’s not always easy going to the doctor here in Japan. While insurance keeps costs low, sometimes I have a hard time getting a receptionist on the phone who speaks English. I’ve found plenty of doctors who speak English, but often their receptionists don’t.
Managers who speak English: My manager at work doesn’t speak English. She’s the greatest, nicest lady in the world, but that doesn’t make up for the constant game of charades we have to play.
Reading menus at restaurants: Often eating at a restaurant is a guessing game because I can’t read the menu. Instead I order via picture and hope for the best.
Understanding the voicemail recording on my phone: for the last year and a half whenever I’ve gotten a voicemail on my phone something is spoken in Japanese prior to the message playing. It will be nice to be able to understand it.
Lack of crowds: If I never experience a Japanese festival or crowd again it will be too soon.
Italian and Mexican food: Haven’t gotten great versions of either while in Japan.
Lack of humidity: The humidity here is insane!
Central hear/air: Most places don’t have central hear or air and just use wall units. They are better than the ones in cheap hotels, but they still aren’t always that great.
Couches, beds and not living on the floor: I don’t have a bed; I have a futon. I only sit on couches in public places because most people’s apartments are too small for couches.
I’m sure I’ve left off a million things, but this is a good start. There are plenty of quirks I’ll miss about Japan, but I am CRAZY EXCITED about going home!