Life abroad

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Living in Japan was a dream come true for me. They say it takes up to 9 years to get used to living in a foreign country. After three years in Japan I finally started growing accustomed to life in Japan. There are three phases of adaptation which I noticed: Cultural shock and eternal optimism You enjoy the differences in whatever you see, taste or hear. But at this stage you still have your country’s way of life inside of you. The rhythm that you are living in at this stage is more of a tourist. The differences in lifestyle are not obvious. Your favourite words at this stage is […]

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One of my colleagues moved into the new apartment the other day. She said that she had to read the contract together with the owner for an hour. That’s what Japanese apartment contracts are! I should probably mention this more often, but Japan is an incredibly bureaucratic country. Their mind set on putting everything on paper, that’s why there are a lot of manuals and contracts. The bureaucracy has its plusses, once the deal is made you are fully protected by various papers. But there are also minuses, such as no one dares to set off the right path of a manual, for example. The rent contracts are part of […]

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I went on a job interview to a very interesting place yesterday. It was a science lab, I won’t tell you what that lab was. You know, if you tell your wish it won’t come true kind of stuff. But the communication with people who work there made me wonder about foreigners living in Japan. Three years in Japan is an achievement, I must say. The professors at my university lived in Japan more than ten or twenty years. But I speak for myself, living in Japan more than two years is an achievement. Why? Because it is a country with different language, food, lifestyle and even time zone. Being […]

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New Year is a fur tree, a count down, presents and all-nighter all over the world. But not in Japan. In Japan New Year is celebrated in an extremely modest way, comparing to Japanese Christmas or New Year celebrations in every country. Here is a list what a foreigner can (or should) do to celebrate New Year Japanese-style. 1. Nengajo (New Year post cards) It stands for Japanese New Year post cards. Post cards are a inevitable part of Japanese culture, but New Year post cards or 年賀状 (nengajo) are a special aspect of Japanese post card culture. The Japanese have been sending post cards to each other since Showa […]