I’ve spent more of my adult life in Japan than in my home country. I came to that realization the other day. It shouldn’t have been such a realization. Simply do the math. Assuming 18 as an adult, I’ve lived 31 years as such (that makes me 49 for the arithmetic challenged). I live in Japan for much of the 90s; arrived in early 92, left in late 99. So that’s almost 8 years. Then after a semi-disastrous dot-com turn of the century in Boston, I returned to .jp in late 2006. Been living here since. So that is another 9 full years, for 17 in all. 31 – 17 is 14, in the states, so I’m officially and firmly over the 50% mark. I’d have to live in the states for 4 years to take back the lead.
Fine, timeline established. So what, right? Well, the fact that I had to think about it tells me a little bit about how I have changed. How the strange has become the commonplace. How what used to be a mystery, no longer is. Not only that, I think I’ve gone native in some ways. So, I’m starting a new series, “Japan is weird, sort of” in which I write about the things in Japan that used to seem weird, but now I kind of like.
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