Hey, everyone! Hope you’re all enjoying spring. The sakura are on the verge of bloom! I’m Siri from India, a first year in the Fundamental and Applied Physics program, School of Science.
It’s been half a year since I set foot in Nagoya University, and Nagoya has already started to feel like home. Living alone is a tremendous challenge, and I can honestly say that I have grown as a person. I am grateful for this experience because I have always wanted to live in Japan. Like many people in G30, I became interested in Japan when I discovered anime and manga as a kid. Over the years, I taught myself Japanese and dreamed that someday I would experience this wonderful culture first-hand.
I never thought I’d be doing it as an undergraduate student in one of Japan’s best universities. I feel like I’m killing two birds with one stone. I’m getting a good education AND living the Japanese life! Academically, the first semester wasn’t much of a challenge, but I feel it’s going to get more interesting from the next semester onwards. I’m looking forward to all the physics classes! I’m thinking of joining the university’s Go club. I’m also moving out of the dorm in a week, so it’s quite an exciting time.
A couple of weeks ago, I went to Tokyo for three nights. I used the Seishun 18 seasonal tickets, so it was a long train ride with multiple transfers. The train ride was beautiful. Especially Mt. Fuji and the sea at Atami. Travelling by local trains has a certain charm that the shinkansen can’t offer. As for Tokyo, it was my second time in the city. The first was when I came to Japan as a tourist in January 2014. At that time I was dazzled by the city’s glitter. I was just like a kid in a candy store. It’s funny how I felt so differently when I went again.
Instead of captivating me, the lights and sounds just tired me out, and I soon began to think that Tokyo is a nice place only if you are a complete consumer. I went to Harajuku and looked at the colourful fashion on display. I loved Tokyo’s museums and cultural spots, and ate to my heart’s content in the city’s many vegetarian restaurants (something I wish Nagoya had). But I was nothing but another nameless tourist. Oh, did I mention I got lost every single time I stepped into Shibuya station?
Perhaps this means that I’ve become a Nagoya-jin through and through! I used every opportunity to talk to my Tokyo friends about why Nagoya is so cool, and when I finally got off at Kanayama, even though it had only been three days, I couldn’t help saying, ‘Yattokame!’*
*’Long time no see’ in Nagoya Dialect