Sunday, March 3, 2013

In love with Sendai

It feels nice to finally post something because the winter semester was too short. Classes were more intense and because of my Tohoku Culture class, I was traveling a lot, had to write a lot of papers, and I did not have a lot of time. This semester I was cooking a lot, so here are pictures of food I made during the winter semester. Here are pictures of macaroni and cheese and pork adobo.

My roommate had moved to a different dormitory at the middle of this semester, so I got my own room. My room was really cold during the winter semester, so I was in the library normally. I wrote five papers for Tohoku Culture, but I am not too happy with all of them. I may post some of them on my blog in the near future.

Besides Sendai, this month I will be going to Tokyo, Okinawa, Okayama, and Hiroshima. My break is one month long, so I am very excited. As for my blog, I connected my British's friend Pimms Hubbel's blog to mine. Therefore please check out his blog. He will be going to America for the first time this month to visit a friend he met at Akita International University (AIU) during the Fall 2012 semester. 

Here is a picture of my Japanese class this semester. In addition, here are pictures of presentations my class and I had to do for Japanese class this semester. My presentation was Crayon Shinchan. These presentations were required for Japanese 300, 305, 307, and 309. I was not required to do this for Japanese 300 last semester, but this semester's Japanese 300 class was required.

I am not sure if my British friend is giving a speech about Ninja turtles
My friend is giving a presentation about Taiwan fashion
My British friend is a Kangaroo
Classes ended on February 27, so on February 28, I went to Sendai to visit a friend for a few days. I would have left later, but my friend was going on a trip at the beginning of this month. In addition, this may have been the last time I could have seen my friend.

I had arrived at Sendai at around 2:30pm, but checked in late because I could not find my hostel. I tried to take a Taxi, but they could not understand what I was saying despite having instructions in Japanese. Eventually I called the staff at my hostel, and the tenant suggested that I talk to the people at the informational center at the train station. The staff at the informational center was very helpful, and they gave me instructions in English to find the hostel.

After finding the hostel, I checked in, and walked around the shop for several hours. It was so nice to walk around, because there was no snow, and this semester, I stayed mostly at AIU. The only reason I decided to  return to AIU after visiting Sendai was to save money and go skiing later this month possibly. Here are pictures of places I saw at Sendai. It is nice to walk around the shops and not worry about the snow.

Classic Gameboy Micro

The next day, I met with my friend and ate beef tongue and drank matcha with her. Beef tongue is a local specialty at Sendai. I was so happy to see my friend at Sendai because my friend will be moving to Chiba soon to start working around April.
Eating beef tongue with my friend
Drinking matcha together

I have been to been Sendai before, so when I met her, I was trying  to get recommendations for new places to visit. According to her besides going to Matsushima for sight-seeing, Sendai is mainly good for shopping. I went to Matsushima three years ago with my dad, so I did not go to Matushima again this time. Here are pictures from before.
One of the most beautiful places in Japan

Besides talking about sightseeing locations, we talked about other things such as our future careers, cultural differences, and future places we want to live at.

I really wanted to go to her graduation, but I cannot go because of my current plans for spring break. I told her in Hawaii, people give each other lei's during graduation. Sometimes people even receive money leis. She was so jealous because in Japan, they only listen to a speech, and they do not receive anything.

The next topic we talked about was future places we wanted to live. Like a lot of Japanese people, I thought she wanted to live in Hawaii. Surprisingly, she wanted to live in Singapore. She likes the warm weather, and I think it is cheaper for her to live in Singapore than Hawaii.

As for me, I am not sure where I want to live yet. I thought I wanted to live in Japan, but after meeting so many great people here at AIU, I am not sure yet. There are so many places I want to visit now. I would like to travel after college because it is very difficult to get a job. But after talking to her, I realized at some point in my life, I need to get married and get a job. I know I do not want to go to graduate school, but I am not sure what I want to do yet. I feel like Hawaii is too small, and I do not want to live with my parents forever even though I like them. 

Compared to me, I feel that my friend is almost set for life. She has a boyfriend and a job. Therefore I think she just needs to get married and start a family.

Surprisingly she was does not want to get married yet, and she may break up with her boyfriend soon if she finds someone better in the city. Her boyfriend lives in the country side, and she does not want to quit her job in the city and become a housewife. Her boyfriend does not have a lot of time so he does not talk with her that often and constantly tells her he loves her. According to her, it seems like he is so busy with his job that he does not have a lot of time to meet new women.

I think she should break with up him if she is not happy because she has too much too waste if she becomes a housewife. My friend is really sweet, and I even admitted her to that I think she is attractive. Therefore I do not think she would have a problem meeting someone new. In Japan, a lot of girls usually try to marry to a rich man and become house wives. I believe it is possible for her to marry someone she loves and keep her career.

It seems likes she wants to marry another Japanese person or someone that is interested in Japanese culture. It is easier for her to deal with someone that has a similar thinking style.

As for me, I am not sure who I want to marry yet. I do not need to marry someone who is passionate about Hawaii or Japan, but I would like to marry someone I truly love.

It was fun talking to her for a few hours. Unfortunately she had to leave because she had to make food for her family. While she was in college, she rarely saw her family, so this is how she spends times with them.

Her family was also affected by the Sendai Earthquake, while she was studying abroad at Singapore. Therefore she lives in an apartment with them while her house is being rebuilt. When her house got destroyed, her family had to live in there car for a while. 

She seems happy and grateful for her family. I was sad to see her leave, but I look forward to seeing her again.

On my last day at Sendai, I walked around the shops for buying gifts for my friends at AIU. I did not know where to go, but I wanted to walk for as much as I could because I did not want to see the snow at Akita. Sendai is such a beautiful city, my friend is so lucky to live here.
Surprisingly I miss Hawaii

My last view of Sendai
Today I finally got back to AIU. Before taking the bus from Sendai to Akita, I gave the tenant a gift I bought for him at the train station. According to him, a lot of AIU students come to that hostel both international and Japanese students. A Japanese student stayed at the hostel the week before in order to search for a job.

Here are pictures of my hostel. I was nervous to travel on my own for the first time, but I am happy I could do it. The hostel was really nice, and I felt like I had enough room to move during my stay there.
My Bed

The kitchen at the hostel
The refrigerator at my hostel
The living room
Side-view of the kitchen
Outside of my hostel
VW Beetle stuck at wall near hostel
It was fun to come to Sendai, and I am happy I got to see my friend. It may not have been easy to get to Sendai, but if had the opportunity, I would do it again. Due to my friend, I have a better idea of what I need to do, and for that I am grateful. Although I am looking forward to returning to Hawaii, and trying things I have not done such as paddleboarding and bodyboarding, I plan to make the most out of my time year.