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japan

Life Photography Travel

Lost in Translation

Blooms.

My trip to Japan lasted almost two weeks and went by in a bit of a blur. It’s hard to believe that I’m back home and life is back to normal, well somewhat normal. I’ve been home almost two days now and of course my sleep schedule is completely whacked. It’s 8AM, I have yet to fall asleep, and I go back to work on Saturday. I’m going to do my best and keep myself busy today and hope that I can get to sleep early tonight.

4:30AM

It was nice seeing my sister, niece, and brother-in-law, who I haven’t seen since they moved there two years ago. However, Japan is not someplace that I would ever want to live. If you’ve grown up with that culture or if you’re highly adaptable to your surroundings you could enjoy it there. It’s a hard place to live. Living in America my entire life has spoiled me on such luxuries as my personal space, portion sizes*, and most importantly diet pepsi. Two weeks without a decent soda is enough to drive someone mad. They have Coca-Cola there but it tastes like a flat version of America’s Coca-Cola. *Probably a bad thing.

Chuu

Honestly, if it wasn’t for having family over there I doubt I would have a desire to return. I think I’ve deluded myself into believing that I like Japanese culture more than I really do. It’s a very hard place to visit if you haven’t mastered the language. According to my sister even if you have mastered the language it’s still a hard place to live. This is her second time living in Japan and she’s still trying to get used to their customs.

subway

I felt helpless throughout most of the trip because I would need my sister or brother-in-law to translate or ask questions for me. I came unprepared and it was no ones fault but my own. I knew there wouldn’t be English translations everywhere but assumed there would be some translations. Not at all.

Interior

Despite saying all of these negative things I did enjoy the time I had with my family. The mountains in Kamikochi were my favorite, we went to Kamikochi for a weekend and spent our nights at the Pension TengallonHat which was surprisingly nice after all. My sister and I relaxed in an outdoor hot tub (not the correct term), which was right next to a loud stream coming from the mountains. When we visited the Japan Alps it was cool and rainy so it left a nice fog on the mountains. Sadly I haven’t mastered photography enough to capture it really well.

Krill

Other than that we did a lot of (window) shopping, went to the aquarium, Nagoya Castle, visited with my brother-in-law’s parents, and more shopping… Did I mention shopping? Yeah, we did that too! Oh and I watched about 12 Japanese people try to fit into a very small elevator. After pressing several buttons and the elevator door still wasn’t closing two of them ran off to the escalator to catch their train. That was pretty amusing.

Bicycle

I’m pretty happy with the way my photos turned out. I have about three rolls from my Holga that will be developed this weekend so you should see more photos soon. Unfortunately, my supersampler* broke near the end of the trip. ::tear:: However, I’m hoping lomography will replace it, as it’s not even been three months. Cross your fingers for me…

Click below to view a slideshow of photos from this trip!



Life Travel

Sayonara

I’m leaving for the airport in about an hour and I’ve been doing a good job of not getting worked up about it. I’m not a nervous flier like some, but being in a confined space; in the air, for many hours may end up taking a toll on me. I’m bringing a journal with me and hopefully I’ll utilize it. Instead of blogging about the entire trip I thought I might just blog about really interesting parts of the trip in detail. We’ll see how that works out.

We’re flying out to Chicago tonight where we have an 11-hour layover, needless to say we’ve reserved a hotel room near O’Hare. (Thanks, Roy!) At 7:30 tomorrow morning we fly to San Francisco and reach our final destination (Nagoya) 17.5 hours later. I think we arrive in Japan at about 2:30pm their time; they’re 13 hours ahead which would make it 1:30AM on Wednesday EST. I’m sure I’ll be fine once we’re getting on the plane in San Francisco and en route to Japan. I’ll have books, an ipod, my laptop, and camera with me on board so I should be entertained for a while.

I suppose this will be the last you hear from me until I return on June 3rd. Most likely I’ll be updating my twitter account sporadically. Keep an eye out! :)