A lot of eventful things have been happening since I last written on here. I’ll be honest; I have been neglecting this blog a bit because I have been writing a lot on my Livejournal as of late. I know I said I was retiring from it on my first post but I still have a few things to write on there before I finally leave to rest. But anyways, on to the main topic.
I’m moving to Japan.
Back in November, I applied to the JET Program. This is essentially a well-known teaching abroad program that sends people from all over the world to Japan to become an English Assistant Langauge Teacher (ALT) in a variety of schools. People are sent all over the place in Japan–ranging from a big city to a rural area. JET was originally a crapshoot for me, as I thought I wasn’t good enough for the program. However, as I continued to study Japanese in college, the more interested I became in it. I love Japanese culture, its scenery and its history and I wanted to become a teacher…why wouldn’t I try for it? And so I did.
The first time I did was back in ’09 and I didn’t even get an interview. I was pretty disappointed at this but as a consolation prize I was hired for a full time job at a South Minneapolis school as a receptionist. It wasn’t perfect but I was happy as the job economy has been really rough for recent graduates. Also, the job actually turned out to be a very rewarding and fun one (despite the high stress it created at times). However, as soon as I knew it, the deadline for the ’10 application was coming up. After some contemplation I said “Why not?” and applied again. I didn’t have anything to lose. In Feburary, I got word that I was invited for an interview. In a sense, getting the interview is the hardest part and I passed it!
In March I had my interview in Chicago. Thanks to my intense research and practice, I had little problems with it. I left back to Saint Paul the same day with confidence; I had done everything in my power to get the job.
One faithful day in May I received the good news: I was accepted into the program. What followed was a lot of paperwork, trips to the doctor, preparing my departure from my current job and plans for the big move. “I have three months to do this, no problem,” I told myself.
My, has time flown. I leave to Japan on July 23rd. I have 7 more days left on my current job. It’s finally hitting me: a new chapter in my life is about to begin. I will be residing in Izumi, a city that is 20-30 minutes south of Osaka. Needless to say, I have lucked out in terms of placement. I didn’t put any preference in where I wanted to go as A) I had no clue and B) I didn’t care where I went, as long as I was in the program. Part of me wanted to be by a city though because I’d rather not be dependent on a car. Public transportation has always been a part of my life and while I was planning on driving this summer, Japan kinda got in the way (haha). I will be living a few minutes away from the train station, which basically takes me anywhere I want. The people I will be working with sound like a great group–I have been getting all the information through them while I know some people are still left in the dark until their predecessor contacts them. I can’t wait to meet them, they sound like a fun group!
So how does this relate to this blog? Well, when I created this blog, I always had a thought in the back of my head: “If I get in JET, I’m definitely making a blog for this part of my life.” However, this blog won’t simply be a “JET blog” like the many that are out there on the Internet. My original plans of making this blog (random life ramblings, thoughts, photos/videos) will still be present as ever. A lot of my friends and family want to read about my life over there while I’m away and I also want to store the adventures that await me.
So, here it is.