When home becomes slightly less familiar

Hey Everyone!

It’s your friendly neighbourhood Gaijin here. It’s been quite a week between the passing of Kobe, the imminent threat of the Corona virus spreading around Asia and an amazing Grammy performance by Demi Lovato speaking about her struggles with drug addiction. Everything changes so quickly sometimes, but at other times stays the same. Today, I’m writing about when you’ve been away from home for a while and it starts to feel like everything there moved along without you. After all, it kind of did.

So, I like returning home for Christmas if my budget permits. It becomes the most wonderful time of the year with my family and I like to keep in touch with friends and family. It’s only been a year and a half since I’ve moved out from my parents house to Japan, which is not too long, but when I went back to my house it seemed like everything was just as I left it. However as I drove around my old high school hangouts and the local mall everything seemed completely different. The buildings were built up, stores were changed, new things came and classic things left – it didn’t feel exactly the same anymore. It really is not realistic of me to expect that things will stay just as I remembered when I was leaving, maybe that’s just a hint of my selfishness mixed with nostalgia.

I was able to meet up with many of my friends as this is the only chance I get, and in doing so I got to catch up with them about their whole year and how things are. We’re around the mid-twenties to early thirties, so it’s fascinating to see where life takes everyone – whether that be through difficulties or victories in life. Their objectives or paths in life as dynamic as The Flight of the Bumblebees. I find it funny that my students always think that adult life is as easy to travel as the 401 in the morning, while they’ve yet to discover all that traffic that you have to go through during rush hour causing detours. Though I guess that’s a good thing, at least they think I have my life completely together.

In Japan, I’ve become more distant from events like Kobe and closer to the spread of the Corona virus, it comes with the territory. So, overall going back to Canada some things stayed right where I left them, while others changed more than I could have imagined. That’s life.  Does this makes me feel a little uneasy about leaving home for Japan again, heck yes. Nonetheless, when I was home I noticed that my personal lifestyle in Canada wasn’t very different from before I left, but in Japan I have such a different way of living that it’s at least noticeable. I’ve come to love my lifestyle in these Inaka streets of Japan and the things that stuck out to me as weird at first are now what makes it homey for me. I guess you don’t see yourself changing because it’s hard to feel those minuscule daily changes, but logically if everything else changes, so do you?

Have a great day everyone and thank you for reading.

How have you changed recently?

Yannick

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