Thursday, November 24, 2005

A Good Excuse

Happy Thanksgiving!

Hey guys, sorry it's been so long. I have been working and entertaining guests, so my schedule has been satisfyingly full. (I haven't even had time for videogames lately!! Amazing!! 0_0;) Unfortunately that means there haven't been very many comics either. And the house is a mess. True to my word, I have given up on being a housewife, and the laundry and cleaning have just gone out the window.... wait, I mean, the laundry can't go out the window because there's construction happening out there so we have to dry it in the house. *sigh*

Anyways, it was a lot of fun having Julia over, because she reminded me that I'm living in a foreign country. Everything was new and shiny, and a bit of her enthusiasm rubbed back on my thouroughly non-tourist self. ^_~ As one, sole gaijin who lives and works here, I've been quite integrated into society and have been doing mostly boring, normal things. But suddenly with another foreign friend, we became bold and exciting ! I did a lot of things I would normally only sort of wishfully think of doing. These included:

1)Looking in harajuku 'lolita-gothic' costume stores and trying them on! (Julia actually bought one, it's very cute!!)
2) Going into about 10 different love-hotels (lobbies only now, I'm a married woman! ^^ (god that sounds weird to say that)) to try to find really weird kinky ones to get pictures. This was with Takeshi and his friend, who turned quite red and adamatly demanded to stay outside. ^^ hee hee. Sadly, no kinky ones were found, they all looked like Best Westerns. But *boy* did people give us weird looks.
3) Riding little kid rides at the videogame arcade (they had big ridable animals that walked around, how fun!)
4) Exploring all seven floors of Animate in Akihabara... ok, I didn't need an excuse to do that, but it was fun anyways ^^

Also people treat you differently when you seem like a tourist. They are kinder and more patronizing, and a bit more intrusive. That can be a good thing when you need help, but can be frustrating, especially when you know what you're doing and want to be left alone. I haven't been treated like a tourist in a long time, I don't even get stared at on the train anymore. I guess I've just lost the 'vibe'. So when I was walking around wit Julia and suddenly treated like a tourist again, it hit me: the "gaijin" word stops applying to you when you're not an outsider. The word 'gaijin' is a shortening of the word 'gaikokujin': (outside country person = foreigner) ...but the shortening (gaijin) takes the country out of it(outside person). Some people think that 'gaikokujin' is more politically correct, but I like 'gaijin' better, because it's something you can overcome. I will *always* be a foreigner, but as I keep working and living here long enough, I will no longer be an 'outsider'.

(pause for touching "awww" sound from the audience ) ^_^

Julia took about a million pictures while she was over here, and maybe 1/4 of them have me in them. Nice!! ^^ So if you wanna see our adventures, take yourselves on over here:


Anonymous Anonymous said...

As I understand it, "Gaijin" originally meant "member of the out-group". But whadda I know? Happy Thanksgiving. --Dad

10:44 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I get the feeling that I'd always be considered something odd in Japan, even if I was there for years. I get weird looks even here! But it was fun to wander about Tokyo with you. You knew all of the best places to go. ; ) Not to mention, free translation services! Thank you so much for letting me come over. It really was one of those "times you'll remember forever" for me.

And I did find the friend's reluctance to go into the Love Hotels funny...particularly after demanding that I feed him ice cream the night before. Poor guy. We just should have liquored him up before then. ; )


7:39 PM  
Blogger Kyra said...

hehe, oh yeah, I forgot about the ice cream part ^^ definitely, we should have gotten him plastered. But then I wouldn't have trusted him in the back seat with you ^_~

4:26 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

No one should ever be trusted in the back seat with me. I would thoroughly agree to that. ; )


8:22 PM  

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