Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Back to Wonderland

My name is Christine and I’m a Japanoholic. It’s been 6 months since my last taste and I still can’t get it out of my system. I’ve tried going cold-turkey and blocking it out of my mind but everything I do and see reminds me of Japan and what I miss about it. The smells, the colours, the smiles, the efficiency, the service, the food – the everything. I can’t even look through my photos without tears starting in my eyes. I hate not being there.

I remember crying all the way home in the car when I came back in August. I never thought I’d be someone who would get depressed. How can someone get depressed? It’s an emotional thing. Depression is for losers. Well turns out I’m the biggest loser of them all, with a capital L.

Perth is simply depressing. Yes, this city is beautiful with nice weather and a wide, starry sky each night but it has nothing on Japan. Housing prices have gone ridiculous and I’ll probably have to live at home till I’m 50 before I can afford my own place, public transport is unreliable and inefficient (not to mention dirty and leaky), stores close before the sun sets, good service is a rarity and you’ll be lucky if you find a good restaurant open after 9pm on a week night. Gasp! Need I say more?

I wasn’t the best company either. I feel sorry for Brendon, my family and friends who had to put up with my sulking.

Finally I couldn’t take it anymore and I had to get out, go back and get some closure. So I booked a plane ticket back to Japan for a two week ‘therapy’ session. The timing was perfect as it coincided with my students’ graduation ceremony. These students were my 1st year high school students when I first started working in Japan and now they were graduating.

I was so excited I couldn’t wait to get on that plane. I arrived in Osaka early in the morning and made my way to Cheryl’s place. Everything was so familiar yet it felt strange. It was so good to be ‘home’ but I realised my Japanese had deteriorated fast. I’d never felt so excited to get on that JR train to Tarumi. I had a shower and a nap back at Cheryl’s place before heading into Tarumi to get reacquainted with my Japanese neighbourhood.

This is a new shop that opened up down the street

It was so good to see Cheryl again and catch up with what’s been happening in the last 6 months. First thing on my list with Cheryl was to head to our beloved local Thai/Viet restaurant for dinner.


At 4:54 am, Blogger Stephen said...

"stores close before the sun sets"

I definitely recall that from when I was last in Australia. Annoying to no end!

I've not encountered that in any other country I've traveled to. What's the reason for that?

At 3:02 am, Blogger Sam said...

Glad to see you back in Japan. Like fish back in to your favorite pond again?
I'm looking forward to more food posting.

At 7:23 pm, Blogger Christine said...

stephen - I totally agree and ask the same question. It really proves that Perth is such a small city with laws and a nanny mindset that restrict it's growth and potential. However the upside is that Perth is the perfect place to retire.

sam - I was super glad too and it felt perfect and snug like a well worn and loved beanie. I won't disappoint, there's plenty of food a'coming. Stay tuned!


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