Thursday, May 31, 2012

Culture Shock - The Negotiation Phase

Tokyo from the Air by Stuck in Customs (Flickr)

It's been just a little over a month since I've arrived in Tokyo. It's been great. I've visited Harajuku, Shibuya, Odaiba, Ueno Zoo, Roppongi, and a few other places. Just recently, I was able to witness a Japanese tea ceremony 茶道 (sadou) lesson and today ventured into my first visit to a Japanese public bathhouse 銭湯 (sentou). It was actually really nice and I would love to go again. I might just make it into a regular th
ing...

But at the same time, during my stay so far, I haven't always been as happy as I thought I'd be. And I tried to hide it from everyone. Even from those dearest to me. Which only made me more miserable during those moments when I wasn't feeling so good. I am in the place I've always wanted to be and admitting I wasn't thrilled 100% of the time made me feel guilty.




Monday, May 14, 2012

From Prague to Tokyo

Early mornings were when the bridge was most worth crossing...

Saying "Good-bye" in order to say "Hello." 

 

Admittedly, four years is a relatively short time in the greater scope of things. If I'm lucky enough to live to a ripe old lady age - 80 let's say - four years seems an insignificant number if you really think about it. But then again, a mere instant is enough to change a life. And a single moment or chance meeting is more than capable of leaving a permanent mark. So in the end, four years are still four years. Their significance depends on the person who lived them.

Four years of my life were spent in "the heart of Europe," in what is arguably the most beautiful city in said continent - and maybe even the world. I knew I was never going to stay there permanently. While fellow expats contemplated that notion, that idea had never crossed my mind. Prague was always a "temporary" home and I was fine with that.




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