Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Reverse Culture Shock Lives

After living in Japan for a while, you get used to answering the same few questions every time you meet somebody new. "How long have you been in Japan?" "Why did you come to Japan?" "Can you use chopsticks?"...

The list goes on and on, but today we are discussing a new question, "What is it like, being home?"

WEIRD.

There, I said it. I find America to be a strange and unusual place. Given that I just returned from a country that considers raw octopus to be delicious bar food, one might wonder where I get the guts to call the "land of the free" weird. I think it's less that America is weird, though at times it certainly is, its that I did change in unanticipated ways. Besides, America and Japan are about as different as can be, so again I have to adjust to everything being different. For one thing, the size differential between Japanese and American portions keeps causing me pain, as their large (L Saizu) is about the same size as an American medium (M Saizu). I suppose that might help explain the size difference between people too. I went from being taller (and a bit wider) than average to being distinctly smallish.

It didn't help that I caught a horrific cold on the flight home. Cold + Jet lag + Reverse Culture Shock = one really tough first week back. After that though, things have been getting better and better. Getting reconnected with all my Denver friends has be a real treat, and of course seeing the family. I've even been dating a nice girl! After three weeks home, despite dismal job prospects, I have to say that things are looking up, bit by bit. It's been a rough couple of months, don't get me wrong, but life is looking a lot brighter than it has in a while. Now if I could just find the perfect job...

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

There is no perfect job. I hate mine and want to quit about 10 times a day.

And am I the nice girl you've been seeing, cause you know you shouldn't lie to your readers, I'm evil. They should know this.

Vesp said...

The cold was just welcoming you back home! It was distinctly a Colorado cold.

Welcome back, in case I haven't told you a dozen times yet.

Gus said...

Welcome back indeed in case I hadn't said it yet as well!!!!!

sam said...

The thing is, too, that when you're abroad, all the news you get about America makes the country look extra weird.

And the clothes they sell back there don't fit me.

Hope you're getting re-settled well, though!

island auntie said...

Told you so. Getting a little taste of it myself. When the woman parked next to me today in Costco's parking lot starting talking to her husband in pidgin as they loaded up their late model Audi, I wondered if my English language transmitter (aka ear) was on the fritz.