Summer is almost here

And I love the summer.

Though it is going to be super hot, everyone here says so.

Five months ago, I got rid of 70% of my “stuff”, sent the rest by boat to my parents and left my apartment in Jerusalem feeling a bit unsure about a lot of things related to the past, the future, and the present.

I am still a bit unsure about things, but I am working on thinking less about the past, not worrying about the future, and most definitely enjoying the present.

Because I made it to Japan, but more importantly, I took off for another adventure.

The postmen here call me “Peregu” and it’s a refreshing identity. I look at the envelope they handed to me, it’s from the bank account I just opened or the phone company I just joined. Everything is in Japanese, it makes me slightly nervous. Then I look at my (hebrew) name written in Katakana; it’s funny and different. And I like it.

Tokyo University of Foreign Studies is where I am studying the Japanese Language until September. Then, I will move on to a totally different part of Tokyo. Everything will be new again: my university, where I will be living, where I will go to get groceries, the people I will meet and encounter.

There are some unknown obstacles ahead. Sometimes my head is full of questions of how things will be like. But I am learning to count on myself. It will be ok.

And more importantly, I am here now. On this part of Tokyo for the time being. And I go to my university every day. Sometimes, I almost forget that around it, there are some very nice places I should indulge in before life goes on.

TUFS is located at the depths of residential Western Tokyo: Neighborhoods, parks, locals who really like to grow cucumbers in their gardens. They are very surprised to see me walking around. I can relate.

It’s quiet. Peaceful. Foreign to me.

Crazy Tokyo itself, The City with no ends, is looming just a short train ride away. But I like being a bit far from it. Close enough to reach, far enough to withdraw.

Some photos from a walk I took after uni today.

 

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Heading to Tokyo

After three months in the US, I landed back in Israel for three weeks. I have been moving around a lot during these past weeks! Visiting relatives, staying in different homes, and being asked, again and again, where am I living nowadays? and what is going on?

When I say that I am moving to Japan people are astonished, and so am I.

I cannot believe this is actually happening. Yes, I have been dreaming of moving to Japan, but I am also feeling blissful in front of such a big change in my life. By now, I am quite experienced with drastic changes, moving countries, saying goodbyes and starting over. My life has been full of this for the past decade. It is hard. It can be frightening and emotionally draining at times. But I came to love it.

I am not entirely sure why. I think it has to do with feeling fresh, or simply alive. The search for finding myself, yet again, in a new place, rediscovering basic needs, often helps me reach a sense of inner stability.

Ok that’s nice, but why did I come back to Israel and now I am heading to Japan?

(And my connection is in Paris, by the way)

As a MEXT Scholarship recipient from Israel, my flight to Japan was booked for me by MEXT (which is amazing) from Israel to Japan. My entire application procedure for the scholarship was from Tel Aviv. Which meant back and forth trips to the Embassy from Jerusalem (where I lived) over a year-long period. It was a long process.

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I have to say that I am super impressed by the Japanese people who work at the embassy and speak fluent Hebrew. Which brings me to… I will have to work hard on my Japanese.

I am landing straight into a six months period of language school. I did study Japanese in the past. But Japanese is very very difficult and I haven’t used it in four years.

I have to be in school the morning after I land. I’m excited to be a student again! I hope I remember how to.

I am going to be so jet-lagged haha Wish me luck 🙂

 

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Community Garden in Givatayim

 

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The Valley of the Cross, Jerusalem

 

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Tel Aviv Beach

 

 

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Cat

comic talk, book talk

Japan is not all manga,  because it’s obviously not. But I do like it. A lot.

not manga books  i got my hands on

Manga is great.

i used to like many kinds when i was younger, now days, i am more selective. and it takes style and artistic freshness to capture my attention. but you can always find an enjoyable title that fits your mood.
Manga is, in fact, a great way for me ( and for anyone) to improve their Japanese language skills. I do try children books sometimes but the lack of pictures can easily cut my concentration very short.

Manga can often be, grammatically and vocabulary wise, harder than children books, but they keep the interest alive and so very visual.

Now I am going to save poor you from a long manga talk and just show you some of the manga(and not manga) I’ve collected here in Japan. It was very cheap or free.

3 volumes in one.
Brothers of Japan, hard cover.
Matsumoto Taiyo is my favorite manga artist. the guy is a bomb of creativity, smiling characters, and very surreal stories.  I have never read this work before, and this is not easy to read in Japanese

Miyuki, 100 yen, 3 volumes in one.
I have no idea what this is, but it is quite easy and cozy to read.

Ono Natsume is another favorite manga artist of mine.
A recent Matsumoto Taiyo work, not a manga but a Children book. 
it is about childhood, death, and getting old, and it has precious illustrations.

an old Japanese version of the French story “the red balloon”.

The illustrator is Iwasaki Chihiro, she died in the 70’s, but her work will always stay warm.