My trip to Japan - My Family Travels

The Island of Japan did more for me than be any amazing tourist location. I not only went and stayed in Japan, but I was a foreign exchange student on a full scholarship. I made life long friends, experienced new foods and cultures, and found out characteristics about myself that I never knew existed.

I lived in Osaka, Japan for seven weeks while going to see many shrines, gardens, and sacred temples.  My host sister, Yoshiko, and I became very close; we still keep in contact with each other to this day.  Yoshiko and her mother showed me kindness that I never thought possible.  They brought me into their home and accepted me as their own.  My host mother owned a bar; I not only helped open and close the bar, but sang karaoke until I was blue in the face.

Being away from my family, friends, and home for so long at the age of fifteen helped me to mature and grow as a person. I found my independence. Everyone kept asking me, “Aren’t you afraid? Aren’t you scared of what you are getting into?” I was excited beyond belief. It wasn’t until the car ride from the airport to my new home did the shock hit me. I also found that I adapt well to situations and people. The food and atmosphere of Japan are a complete change of taste and pace than life here in America.  My first full day, I threw up everything I ate.

Overall, I loved every moment of my trip, and to this day still tell stories of my experiences I gained while in Japan. I learned a tremendous amount about myself and made friends I will forever hold near and dear to me.  Japan, my second home and forever my love, I will see you again one day.

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