Thursday, September 24, 2009
Asia, take two.
It's no surprise that I've been obsessed with Asia since I set foot there, and I somehow knew I'd be back sooner or later. My short visit to Japan last summer left me thirsty for more, and I haven't been able to get it out of my head since then. I was so tempted to go back to Seoul for another stint: a city I love so much, a city I know by heart. But it would maybe be too many memories, and I needed a fresh start, something that would be my own.
The timing is perfect. It's the end of my television contract, and I'm secretly happy to escape yet another freezing Canadian winter. Finally living my Japanese, Lost in Translation fantasy. For a second time. I am aware it will be difficult, and challenging. To say good-bye to loved ones all over again. To jump into the unknown, away from familiar and comforting things. To be on my own, and to not be able to share the experience with someone I love.
But I'll be fine. I forgot how much paperwork and organization moving abroad involves, but it's going smoothly. The second time around, it's so much easier, as I know what to except. I'm surprisingly calm and collected (except for the occasional 3am panic attack...hmmm). My family and friends have been so supportive and happy for me, and I wanted to thank you all for your lovely comments. I'm definitely looking forward to writing about it all.
To be honest, I'm terrified. I remember flying to Korea for the first time: I was completely frightened. I woke up not knowing where I was, and it was the worst feeling in the world. But it got much better. In fact, it got amazing, and I didn't want to leave anymore. This time, I'm determined to do it right. I'll learn Japanese (I'll make a real effort and take classes), I'll be more outgoing, and I'll embrace Japanese food and culture instead of wishing I were home.
Six more weeks in Montreal. I'm soaking up every little last bit of it. Eating cupcakes, baking my favourite treats, long, lazy brunches with friends. Learning Japanese (um, trying).
You can get out of Asia, but you cannot get Asia out of you.