Its been a while since i last posted, and for that i am regretful. I have some things to come clean about before i get home in a few days… no big deal but i feel like i need to be totally honest with everyone: I am so, totally, completely homesick. I have been for a while, but I’ve been putting a big smile on and continuing to live this trip to the fullest because i realize how lucky i am to be here in Japan. But as the countdown begins for my flight home, i’m finding it harder and harder to put on a happy face. Not because i feel necessarily unhappy, but i feel literally sick. Sick and tired, i look tired too. I really wanted to come home looking great and having everyone say ”wow you look great! that trip must have done you a lot of good, Erika.” Well, the trip did do me a lot of good. But at this point, i’m exhausted. I have dark circles under my eyes and i could sleep for 24 hours straight if you let me. Or, if i let myself, i should say.
Can you blame me for being so tired? Traveling is not easy! Especially being alone… 2 months is a very long time, and although i wouldnt change the amount of time i have been in Japan, i dont think i would go somewhere on a whim for 2 months again. The truth is, I’m sick of Japan. There are things about this culture that i love, and that i believe they do the ”right way”. I love all of the people who have helped me, guided me and taught me. I’ve made some wonderful friends, and I truely appreciate and am grateful for these things. When i say what i’m about to say, I’m speaking of the society as a whole, based on what i’ve seen on my travels: I’m having a hard time seeing the wonderful thigns about the Japanese when i feel so tired of their indirectness, indeciciveness, and inability to look to themselves and see and admit their faults. Japan may be leaps ahead of the rest of the world in technology, public transportation, cell phones, cameras, toilets, and abundance of escalators. They may have recycling down to a science, and a faster postal service, but they wrap everything at least 3 times in plastic and paper and i feel it really defys the point. In a single day in Japan i aquire more trash then i could ever remember being responsible for in the US. So their divorce rate may be much lower than the US, but maybe the trade off is that we have people with smiles on their faces walking down the street. We have independent, creative thinkers, and strong women in our society. We have people that can look at a relationship and say ”this isnt working, something is wrong and it needs to be fixed or i need to move on to be happy.” In japan, they just dont say anything, dont do anything, they simply accept the poor situation that they are in and lead an unsatisfying life. I would rather live in a society where a strong, independent woman was applauded and gifted, rather than look at as if she were crazy. ”you mean, you dont want to cook and clean for someone that doesnt hardly touch you, help you , or thank you for raising his children?” No thanks. Granted, I’ve have met a few couples who have beautiful families and wonderfully collaborative relationships. I know people thought i would come to Japan and fall in love with a Japanese man, but …well, i’ll save my cutting remarks and simply tell you that: its not going to happen.
The Japanese have amazing work ethic though… i’ll give them that much. I bet America would also, if we had the same mentality: You live to work. Thats the way most Japanese think. As Americans, we think: I work to live, not live to work. Big difference… so what if our production level is lower… I think we lead overall happier lives.
At this point i’m just ranting, so i’ll stop and tell you how excited i am to go home. I cant hardly wait to speak english, and understand what others are saying to me. I cant WAIT to see my friends!! My sisters, my mom…. I’m going to soak all of it in like a sponge because i feel like i couldnt get enough America into my veins. I love America so much.
So i only have about 10 more minutes on this internet, and i dont really feel like giving a watered down account of the past few days. My dad and i are having a pretty damn good time though… Right now were in Kyoto riding out bikes around in the day and feasting on traditional Japanese cuisine in the night. Tonight we had about an 8 course Japanese dinner. It was AMAZING… some things we knew what they were, and some we didnt have any idea what we were eating. It kept coming and coming, but its a feast you dont feel guilty about because it has almost zero fat, if any. We had a few drinks and we kind of started laughing in this very serious Japanese enviornment. Im talkin’, this place was pretty stiff and sober. WE, however, werent sober at this point. When dessert came out as this tasteless gelatin with a couple small slices of fruit, one starts to want some FAT, some ice cream, or cake. Especially after such a healthy dinner. And drunk Erika exclaimed, ”wheres my pistol? Allow me to shoot whomever calls this dessert.” After my dad took the next bite of his, and realized the truth i spoke, we were shaking with laughter. Red in the face, watery eyes, occasional spurts of noise and grunts as a result of attempting to contain ourselves… Jesus, we almost totally lost it in that place. It almost crossed that point of no return where you think, ”Its too late, i may as well laugh my ass of and roll on the floor.” but i knew it just couldnt go that far! I wouldnt allow it, we would make fools of America. So i used every last drop of discipline and seriousness to pull myself together. I told my dad with a straight face, ”Whip yourself into shape, man. Comeon!” and then we almost lost it again…. SOOOO funny.
Annnnyway Good night. Cant wait for my landing on Nov. 24th at 10 a.m. 😉
YEAH babes, see you soon!!