Sometimes its those little things you never noticed before that bring a smile to your face. Like the signs posted at my train station about proper self conduct while riding. Or the excitement on the faces of new 1st grade elementary school students who have never seen you before and realize they can actually communicate with you. And one ought to never forget the joy of playing "dress-up" with her girlfriends. Even though the bulk of my "travels" are done I am still finding things are not too boring in the small inaka (country) town of Hojo.
Having never visited Japan before, making the move for an entire year was very intimidating. I had no idea what to expect, much less an understanding of the language or culture. These barriers have been slowly fading, and I have found the Japanese people to be amazingly accomodating. The term *Minnesota nice* must now be applied to an entire country!... full info