IMG_1591 on Flickr.
There’s a concept called “reverse culture shock” when people return to the land of their birth after being in parts foreign for a while.  You do pick up local habits even if you don’t mean to. Bowing while shaking hands. Pauses as you look for the best words to use. Pushing into the bus as other people are leaving and then the driver yelling at you to wait and everyone looks at you like you’re an asshole. I did that after returning from Korea. No one waits there. I’ve been back and forward enough now that I can flip my mental switches relatively quickly. And while I still bitch about the constant chill in the Canadian air, I don’t try to pay for bus after I ride it like they do in Japan. I also look both ways before crossing the street correctly. Left, then right, in Canada. Right, then left, in Japan. To be honest, I’m a bit embarrassed by how quickly I slipped into my Canadian comfort zone. Like my Japanese comfort zone was nothing. And to be honest, it really was nothing. I’ve pointed out before: Take your boring life in North America* and translate it to Japanese. There isn’t much adjusting to be done. That’s part of the reason I have an urge to return to Korea. I’m never comfortable there due to the first world comforts going hand in hand with the third world personality. Or maybe I felt that way about my time in Japan due to my having been an expat for seven years by the time I got there. YMMV. I tell you this, though… I’d get a full body Brazilian wax in exchange for Japanese style bath tubs in every house here.
I think this was shot with the Camerabag App. But since I got rid of my iPhone, I have no way to confirm that.
*Living in Tokyo/ Toronto/ Taipei/ Seoul/ Dubai/ NYC/ Rio/ etc… don’t count. Big cities are different planets entirely and don’t really represent the nation they’re in.

IMG_1591 on Flickr.

There’s a concept called “reverse culture shock” when people return to the land of their birth after being in parts foreign for a while.

You do pick up local habits even if you don’t mean to. Bowing while shaking hands. Pauses as you look for the best words to use. Pushing into the bus as other people are leaving and then the driver yelling at you to wait and everyone looks at you like you’re an asshole.

I did that after returning from Korea. No one waits there.

I’ve been back and forward enough now that I can flip my mental switches relatively quickly. And while I still bitch about the constant chill in the Canadian air, I don’t try to pay for bus after I ride it like they do in Japan. I also look both ways before crossing the street correctly. Left, then right, in Canada. Right, then left, in Japan.

To be honest, I’m a bit embarrassed by how quickly I slipped into my Canadian comfort zone. Like my Japanese comfort zone was nothing. And to be honest, it really was nothing. I’ve pointed out before: Take your boring life in North America* and translate it to Japanese. There isn’t much adjusting to be done. That’s part of the reason I have an urge to return to Korea. I’m never comfortable there due to the first world comforts going hand in hand with the third world personality.

Or maybe I felt that way about my time in Japan due to my having been an expat for seven years by the time I got there. YMMV.

I tell you this, though… I’d get a full body Brazilian wax in exchange for Japanese style bath tubs in every house here.

I think this was shot with the Camerabag App. But since I got rid of my iPhone, I have no way to confirm that.

*Living in Tokyo/ Toronto/ Taipei/ Seoul/ Dubai/ NYC/ Rio/ etc… don’t count. Big cities are different planets entirely and don’t really represent the nation they’re in.

This overly dramatic shot is a small portion of the disarray that is my apartment right now. I’m still going through my belongings and mentally weighing their sentimentality against their shipping and/or trashing costs. 

Today is also my last day of employment. It’s been a decent run. Longest I’ve had a job, to be honest.   Few regrets. And this time I’ll be leaving sad instead of angry and filled with the desire to set the building on fire. That’s really something as well. 

Tomorrow will mark the start of the next phase of my life. One month in Japan. Back to Canada for what I hope will be called the “Not so serious. Just take your meds and watch your diet.” phase and not the “Might as well blow your money on hookers and booze in your final few months.” phase. 

That would suck.

This overly dramatic shot is a small portion of the disarray that is my apartment right now. I’m still going through my belongings and mentally weighing their sentimentality against their shipping and/or trashing costs.

Today is also my last day of employment. It’s been a decent run. Longest I’ve had a job, to be honest. Few regrets. And this time I’ll be leaving sad instead of angry and filled with the desire to set the building on fire. That’s really something as well.

Tomorrow will mark the start of the next phase of my life. One month in Japan. Back to Canada for what I hope will be called the “Not so serious. Just take your meds and watch your diet.” phase and not the “Might as well blow your money on hookers and booze in your final few months.” phase.

That would suck.

Ever since I was a child I’ve been fascinated by paths, alleys, trails and so on through the urban jungle. As a depressed teen I was a fan if the Xanth series. (Back in those early books before the author started writing about perving on young girls full time.) The idea that you could take a walk down a path and find a magical world really sang to me. Find somewhere where puberty wasn’t such a fucking drag.
As an adult I still hunt out the strange paths wherever I find myself in East Asia. I feel comfortable doing it here because the odds are low that some bored young men are going to kick the shit out of me just because I’m there. To explore the odd paths of back home, I’m reduced to hoping Streetview has me covered.
Assuming there’s nothing seriously wrong with me, I’ll be leaving home as soon as. The paths call to me. They promise a safe trip.

Ever since I was a child I’ve been fascinated by paths, alleys, trails and so on through the urban jungle. As a depressed teen I was a fan if the Xanth series. (Back in those early books before the author started writing about perving on young girls full time.) The idea that you could take a walk down a path and find a magical world really sang to me. Find somewhere where puberty wasn’t such a fucking drag.

As an adult I still hunt out the strange paths wherever I find myself in East Asia. I feel comfortable doing it here because the odds are low that some bored young men are going to kick the shit out of me just because I’m there. To explore the odd paths of back home, I’m reduced to hoping Streetview has me covered.

Assuming there’s nothing seriously wrong with me, I’ll be leaving home as soon as. The paths call to me. They promise a safe trip.

Tomorrow I go “dark” since I’m closing down my account with SoftBank and won’t have 3G anymore. Thankfully I have Final Fantasy 1 though 4, plus The Secret of Mana and those angry avians to keep me amused. 

I put dark in the scare quotes since wifi access is available to me in a number of places. I’ll have to get used to Starbucks’ mildly coffee-flavored sugar milk. But I do like their chai lattes…

This mess is currently my apartment. I’m trying to get everything packed and mailed off ASAP so I can get to what is looking like an epic cleaning. The big problem is the small and medium sized stuff. Paper is pretty heavy and thus expensive to mail off, but I’d hate to drop these Love & Rockets New Stories books into the recycling.  And what can I stick in the box full of film so everything doesn’t fly around while shipping? A sweater is a bit too big. A washcloth?

I’m also surprised at the two dozen batteries I’ve uncovered so far. Ah well. One more month left to enjoy it. 

The app is Infinicam. I find its filters a bit more convincing than the filters of the more popular apps. But that might just be because I don’t see them all over the Internet.

Tomorrow I go “dark” since I’m closing down my account with SoftBank and won’t have 3G anymore. Thankfully I have Final Fantasy 1 though 4, plus The Secret of Mana and those angry avians to keep me amused.

I put dark in the scare quotes since wifi access is available to me in a number of places. I’ll have to get used to Starbucks’ mildly coffee-flavored sugar milk. But I do like their chai lattes…

This mess is currently my apartment. I’m trying to get everything packed and mailed off ASAP so I can get to what is looking like an epic cleaning. The big problem is the small and medium sized stuff. Paper is pretty heavy and thus expensive to mail off, but I’d hate to drop these Love & Rockets New Stories books into the recycling. And what can I stick in the box full of film so everything doesn’t fly around while shipping? A sweater is a bit too big. A washcloth?

I’m also surprised at the two dozen batteries I’ve uncovered so far. Ah well. One more month left to enjoy it.

The app is Infinicam. I find its filters a bit more convincing than the filters of the more popular apps. But that might just be because I don’t see them all over the Internet.