I just got back in a few days ago and I’m struggling with jetlag off and on. I do seem to get better at it every time I go. This time it has left me a little drunk more than anything else. I’ve also been getting through my massive backlog of emails and comments. Thanks everyone for sending me some awesome mail. I always love to answer questions.
It was also good to just take two weeks and forget about it all. I was able to devour massive amounts of American food and eat all the sweets that my family notoriously cooks up for the holidays. You don’t think you are going to miss American food when you come over here, but you do. Anyway, it’s good to be back and I’m ready to roll up my sleeves and start blogging and podcasting again.
Going Back to the States
Going back to the States always reminds me of the sharp contrasts between Japan and America. There are plenty of sharp contrasts to notice. I almost notice them immediately. From how it’s such an absolute pain to get through an airport anymore to how different everyone’s mannerisms are.
This is one thing that you can’t read in a book or see in a movie. It simply most be experienced to really realize the importance of it all. That’s why I encourage anyone that can to live abroad. Even if you can only make it over to another country for a few months, it is definitely something that will change your perspective on life.
I Have a Drinking Problem
Yeah, it’s time I come write out and admit it publicly. I, Clayton ‘Mac’ MacKnight have a drinking problem. You heard it here first at JLPTBootCamp.com. It’s time a finally got it off my chest.
It all started when I first came to Japan and I discovered this strange substance that was green tea. At first I thought it was bizarre that they brewed tea and then stuck it in a bottle and charged you as much as a soda for it, but the concept grew on me little by little.
Now I have to have a drink of the stuff everyday. It’s my go juice. It’s healthy, zero calories and it is the most abundant resource in Japan aside from dark-colored business suits. I absolutely love the stuff and so does Japan.
If you walk into a convenience store in Japan you are most likely to see an entire drink section dedicated to green tea (and probably another half section devoted to coffee). You won’t see many sugary drinks (at least not yet anyway). Oh, you might find your trusty Coca-Cola and Pepsi and whatever they happen to be calling their zero calorie Frankenstein drink, but beyond that there aren’t many options.
It is quite the opposite in the states. I always dread going back because there simply aren’t any real drink choices that don’t contain something sweet.
Now, don’t get me wrong I like sweet. Sweet is well sweet, but I like chocolate cake, too, but I’m not going to eat it every meal. I think I’m truly becoming Japanese because I don’t need that much sweet anymore.
I’m actually starting to understand why people in Japan don’t like starburst, skittles, and other ultra-sugary sweets. Although, I still have a place in my heart for Sour Patch Kids. They’ll always be my favorite.
In Japan, people prefer more chocolately things. For example, chocolate covered macadamia nuts or chocolate covered biscuits. This seems to be the general trend. So, if you are ever buying some sweets for your sweets, be sure to avoid the Skittles.
What Contrast Have you Noticed?
What is a contrast between Japanese and western culture that you have noticed in your studies or your trips abroad? Let me know in the comments below.
Stay tuned toward the end of this podcast for a special bonus N5 vocabulary lesson. Give it a listen and let me know what you think. I’d love to hear your comments.
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