I’ve always heard people talk about travel, and I have always hoped one day I could venture out into the world as well. But I never really believed how impactful it could be.
I haven’t even left the states yet and I’m feeling this huge sense of, there’s so much out there! Do you guys believe in the saying ‘you attract what you think/feel’? I used to think it was the most stupid thing I had ever heard, but lately I am wondering.. could it be true?
Since I changed to Japanese studies, of course I’ve still had struggles, but in all, I’ve been seeing a difference in people I surround myself with and opportunities that pop up. These are things I had always hoped I could find, but it hasn’t been until this year that I decided to become stronger that I have been so fortunate.
The past two days I have been enlightened on the world. Yesterday I attended a meeting about teaching abroad and was able to listen to stories from people who have traveled and taught all over the world from Spain, The Middle East, and even Poland! Two people struck me as very passionate and were just so humbling in the things they would say about their experiences.
Then today I was able to meet a Brazilian exchange student. We talked for about an hour and she told me of her studies and her struggles and about her home country and the friends she has made here. We discussed a lot of differences between our countries and were both envious of one another. I felt like like Brazil sounded so much more free than America, and she thought everything about America was amazing, but the people were a little cold.
She told me I was a ‘nice American’ and that many Americans didn’t have the patience for her broken English since she has only studied a year or a little more. It made me realise that I will be in her shoes in a few months.
A whole new culture. A whole new language. She complimented me on my kindness and patience I had with her, and actually… I had never thought about it. I’ve always enjoyed talking with people from other countries and actually I don’t find their broken English annoying at all. I actually felt really awful thinking about the impatient people exchange students probably deal with. And I wondered… will people in Japan be accepting of me?
So far my friends I have made here in America from Japan are very helpful, but I have never been forced to rely on Japanese. I know once I am in Japan I want to challenge myself to be different.
Though I think my heart belongs in Japan, meeting this student today, being invited to hang out with her and her other friends from South America to experience their style, I hope to visit many places around the world. I find such incredible beauty in peoples traditions and countries. I wish I could feel so strongly about the country I was born in. But maybe through travel I can understand why so many people think America is amazing. Maybe I focus to harshly on the attitudes of people in America than what America offers. We’ll see one day I hope!