Saturday, January 17, 2009

Nine Weeks and One Day

In nine weeks and one day, I'm leaving Japan.

In nine weeks and two days, I'll no longer be a gaijin. Well not technically at least, I think once a gaijin, there's always a bit of gaijin-ness that stays with us.

In nine weeks and two days, you'll find me on the Cairns waterfront eating fish and chips, possibly following that with a lamington for dessert.

In nine weeks and three days, I'll be picking up the keys for our new townhouse in Brisbane.

I'm not sure when I'll get to Japan next, after those nine weeks and one day. And when I do, I'm not sure for how long it will be. I'm so very sad about leaving Japan, but very happy about moving home. I'm excited and terrified about starting a new life.

Only nine weeks and one day left.

25 comments:

Tornadoes28 said...

It's weird. I've never lived in Japan, only visited. And I understand that tens of thousands of foreigners go to Japan temporarily to work. But I am always a little sad when I hear a long term foreign resident who is leaving Japan.

Orchid64 said...

Far sooner than you think, life in Japan is going to seem like some sort of dream you experienced in another lifetime. This will be a good thing.

You'll be a person again in the eyes of all the strangers around you. This will be a wonderful thing.

You'll still miss Japan, of course. :-)

Lisa [strickerin] said...

Wow. I knew it was coming. Nine weeks is not long at all.

All the very best for these last moments and for a great new life in Brissie.

K and S said...

sad to hear that you are leaving, all the best to you!

forsythia said...

OK, you can go home if you must, but please explain what a "lamington" is. It will be 1000 years until the movie AUSTRALIA reaches us via Netflix, and I can't want that long. Who knows? They might not even mention lamingtons in the movie.

Fuji Mama said...

So true--once a gaijin always a bit of a gaijin! Don't you think that being a gaijin in Japan you become a bit more aware of yourself because you are so different? Once you realize you are different does "different" ever really go away? I hope not--I think there's a bit of magic in that! Enjoy every second of the next bit, it goes by way too fast!

billywest said...

Wow, strange to think of a Japan without you in it.

Good luck with the preparations and enjoy the remainder of your time here.

Cheers!

Melanie Gray Augustin said...

Hey Tornadoes - I also feel sad when I hear a gaijin is leaving Japan, whether I've met them or not.

Hey Orchid - It's funny, I remember when I moved back last time and I was really looking forward to not being stared at. When I got back to Australia though and no one was looking at me I was quite upset that I was going about my life unnoticed, I no longer felt special! I will really miss Japan.

Hey Lisa - Yep, it really snuck up on me!

Hey K&S - Thanks!

Hey Forsythia - Oops! Sorry, I meant to put a link up for a Lamington. I'll do that in a moment. It's essentially a day-old piece of sponge cake rolled in chocolate and then in coconut. Very yummy! I'm also eager to see Australia, it won't be released here until Feb 28th.

Hey Fujimama - I think for me too, the whole feeling different, and really experiencing being a minority has made me a lot more tolarant of other people. It opens your eyes to the different ways people do things. It's funny though, I found I wanted to talk to other people about it, but the only people I really could, once I'd returned to Australia, was fellow ex-gaijin.

Hey Billywest - Thanks! To be honest, I think it will be strange to think of Japan without me and me without Japan too!

Anonymous said...

Make the most of your remaining time.

At least Australia is relatively close to Japan. You will be able to visit easily as long as the dollar recovers against the yen.

Good Luck!

I've enjoyed reading your blog.

Melanie Gray Augustin said...

Thanks Anon! I certainly will try to make the last of my time here.

yellowman said...

Leaving Japan is so easy but yet so difficult.

I hope you have a great time back in Australia. :)

Melanie Gray Augustin said...

I'm right there with you Yellowman! So easy... but oh so hard! I always feel like I leave a little part of me behind.

Chrisy said...

sounds like very interesting times for you...make sure you bring all your lovely fabrics back with you...

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Contamination said...

I'd kill for a Lamington right about now.

Melanie Gray Augustin said...

Hey Christy - There are definately LOTS of fabrics coming back with me. My husband estimates I have (honestly) about 3 cubic meters!

Hey Cont - hehehe... I always have a Mr Donuts chocolate and coconut donut to help quell those lamington cravings :)

mizu designs said...

OMG I was just this moment thinking 'when is Melanie due to go home to Aus?' and then I came upon your post. I totally get the fish and chips and lamington craving (though not together, urrhhh!). I visited London once when I was living in Kyoto and all I could think about was eating fish and chips in a pub and finding the best bookshop in town. Which I did. And upon returning to Aus I think it took a good year for me to stop stuffing cheese (of all kinds) down my gob at a scary rate for fear that we would somehow run out. And lamingtons? Well, a girl just have to have them, doesn't she? Brisvegas has changed so much you will love it there. Was just there last weekend in fact.

Contamination said...

In Hachioji there is a bread shop that makes REALLY good chocolate muffins. I suppose I could sprinkle one with coconut shavings....

Nabeel said...

Brisbane is a really nice place, I heard. Enjoy the new beginning.

tim said...

Well--I've always been of the opinion that you should leave Japan at that "right" time: when you still think you have a chance of coming back to visit, and before you reach a boiling point with things here.
Been thinking a lot about this subject, myself... ;-)

Melanie Gray Augustin said...

Hey Tim, I'll be interested to see how your "thinking" goes. You are right, it's best to leave at the "right" time. Last time, I left too early and found re-settling really difficult. So much so I suppose that after 4 years of being back in Australia, I went back to Japan. I think this time, the timing and reasoning was good. I will always miss Japan though.

Nabeel said...

I am hoping that the next Olympics would be in Tokyo. It's such a service oriented nation.

Jamaipanese said...

such a poetic post.

I know you will be fine, you will always have Japan in your heart and it's not like you will never visit again

ウェブ開発者 said...

I hope you would also continue blogging, even when you returned. Your experience here in Japan can really help gaijins like us.

highheelonscoot said...

is it hard to be a gaijin?