Whilst I was at university I had the opportunity to study Japanese as an additional subject. I jumped at the chance as it really appealed.
It was a small group and we had a lovely teacher who was very patient.
At the end of the first year there was a trip to Japan. It was for five weeks and we were to study as the university in Kyoto.
I was one of five students to go on the trip. Two of the others who went on that trip are still two of my greatest friends, which says a lot about the impact the trip had on me. Although we aren’t all together very often as one lives in Hong Kong, when we do get together it is so much fun…and normally involves lots of food and photos.
We spent 2.5 weeks in a hotel in Kyoto and 2.5 weeks staying with a host family. It was the most incredible experience.
My memories of Japan include:
- Green tea
- Cherry blossom
- Long escalators
- Massive watermelons
- Massage chairs
- Crazy jet lag
- Golden temple
- Octopus balls
- Amazing shops
- Lovely people
- Electronic talking toilets
- Sleeping on the floor
- Fast trains
- Crowded trains
- Cementing friendships
Aside from the friends I made on this trip, my only daily reminder of Japan is a cup of green tea. Clearspring make the ‘proper’ stuff you will actually find in Kyoto – Organic Matcha Green Tea. It is a really bright green compared to the regular stuff and seems so much more authentic. I absolutely love this stuff. The colour is amazing and it is a great start and end to a busy day. It comes in powder form, so you only use 1/4 of a teaspoon at a time and then you need to stir quite vigorously to ensure there is no residue.
I am determined to go back some day and show the children all the amazing things I saw and more.
When I got back from the trip I read ‘Memoirs of a Geisha’ and it transported me right back to Kyoto.
Are there things in your daily routine that remind you of a great trip or experience?