Today just happened to be a not-so-ordinary day and here’s my story:
First off, I enjoy interacting with multiple personalities on the job as I mentioned in my earlier post. I love meeting new people and learning as much as I possibly can about them. I love the exposure I get when it comes to learning about the different cultures, traditions and lifestyles that these individuals preserve. I love how everyday is an exchange of new information between me and my students. I learn something new everyday, and some of the things I learn are considered life lessons for me probably because I’m younger than a majority of my students and I know that I still have a large number of things to explore about myself.
Today, I decided to utilize my day off from work to explore Takasaki. Takasaki is located in the Gunma prefecture, which is often described by many locals and foreigners as being in “the middle of nowhere.” Maebashi is the capital of Gunma, but Takasaki is a larger and more populated city and serves as a regional transportation hub. At Takasaki Station, the rapid train (Joshin Railway Line) and the Shinkansen (Bullet Train) are accessible so it’s definitely not mandatory to navigate Japan riding the local train. I haven’t taken the Shinkansen to Tokyo yet, but I rode the rapid train when I went to the city over the weekend and it took me about 2-2.5 hours. Riding the Shinkansen would have cut that amount of time in half, but that would have meant having to pay double the price and I’ve definitely been trying to put myself on a strict budget! It’s about $23 USD to take the rapid train to the city one way. I’m really thankful that I live 3 minutes away from the station (and my workplace) by walking so it’s easy for me to hop on a train and venture out to other places! Overall, as my first impression, I personally think that it’s a nice and peaceful area, but not exactly ideal for tourists.
It’s unbelievable that today marks my third week of living in Japan! I arrived in Japan on February 4th, started training on the 5th, moved to Takasaki City in the Gunma prefecture on the 17th, and started work on the 18th. Over a three week span, I’ve met a lot of new people, learned a lot about the Japanese culture, acquired teaching techniques, and explored some touristy sites in Japan. Lastly, I’ve gotten to explore myself better and I believe that it’s already helped me improve myself both personally and professionally.