It’s hard to believe it’s been over a week since we got back from Japan. It feels like a lifetime ago. I think I’ve experienced just as much culture shock returning home as I did going to Japan. I’m still a little surprised when I walk in the grocery store and I can actually read all the packaging or when I get in the car and the steering wheel is on the left side. I crave the all the delicious foods I got to try, but most of all, I miss spending time with my host family and all the friends I made.
Going to Japan was easily one of the most amazing experiences in my life. During the first nine days, we were able to tour different parts of Japan including Tokyo, Kamakura, Hakone, Kyoto, and Nara. It was interesting to be able to experience both the traditional and modern aspects of Japanese culture and to see how they are both so clearly apparent in the Japanese lifestyle. While in Tokyo, we saw the majesty of Old Japan as we visited Meiji Shrine and the Imperial Palace. We also saw cutting edge robotics at the Honda showroom and the neon lights of Shinjuku. It was beautiful to see the new and old so seamlessly intertwined.