Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Confession time

* Shikoku is the light purple island in the South.

This all happened today. Sleep deprivation makes me act a little bit crazy.

It all started as a regular work morning, my soy latte in hand (I reward myself to Starbucks when I sleep less than 4 hours), just checking my email. I was thrilled to find a message from my Japan company, saying they finally have an idea of my placement. It's still subject to change, but they gave me the name of my city, located on Shikoku Island, at the very south of the country. Puzzled, I quickly googled it and found a bit of information, but nothing too specific. I decided to google pictures, and all I saw were mountains and huge fields of... rice. And water. My heart started beating faster and faster, as I nervously realized I'd be living in the sticks. Yup. Me, Vivian, in the countryside. After I specifically insisted on "NON RURAL" on my application. I almost started crying. Imagining I'd be the only foreigner on that island.

So I wrote an upset email to my recruiter, telling them how disappointed I was they ignored my only request, and wondering why they would put me in the least populated place in Japan. Or so I thought. Turns out I was mistaken. In my panic, I had read everything wrong. It's not the least populated place in Japan. My city is pretty big. A Starbucks locator told me there are nine shops in my city. And a Zara. Not bad. Can't be in the sticks, right? Some fellow expats told me it was a beautiful location in Japan, full of mountains, beaches, castles, and hot springs. And full of foreigners, too. And, across the river from Osaka and Kobe. And near the lovely Hiroshima. With direct flights to Seoul. Can't complain.

So I wrote another email to my recruiter, telling her to disregard my first one. That I had been under a lot of stress with the preparation and that any location would be fine. She was kind about it, again reminding me that it could still change.

I went home. Made some tea with honey. Watched some Friends, took a nap, and had a workout. I'm driving myself crazy. Any tips on how to relax?


sharonheit said...

Could you imagine if it had been the sticks though?

Vivian said...

I don't want to imagine.... the mere thought of it sent me into a nervous breakdown this morning!

I think I could survive anywhere, and I could even grow to like it, but um... no.

Anonymous said...

Wow. You definitely had a very long and stressful day. Other than putting on some boxing gloves and finding a punching bag I think you did all you could do to relax. And I agree with you. I think you could survive, but you're not going to Japan to have a "survival" experience. So please continue to voice your opinions to your recruiter, so that you can have the kind of experience in Japan that you want. I'm so sorry that you went through this today.

{lovely little things} said...

That would be quite a shock, I don't blame you for reacting. It sounds like you have the option to go to a different city it - are you going to stick it out or opt for a more urban placement?

Vivian said...

Nothing is confirmed, it could very well change, but if it's my location, i'll be very happy with it.

A lot of people told me it's one of the most beautiful places in Japan, and it's a decent-sized city, so that would be good :)

Anonymous said...

Glad you're not living in the sticks. My first year in SoKo was in the sticks and it was horrible. I'm not the life of the party but i hated country life. So happy to hear things are moving along for you :)

Nicole Marie said...

haha oh my that's kind of funny. but i mean if there's starbucks around it's got to be a great pace!!