Today, March 13, 2003, marks 1 year that I have lived in Japan. Wow. I can say with confidence that never before has a year in my life passed so quickly as this last year did. I have no idea where it went!
When Naoko and I left San Francisco on March 12, 2002, naturally my feelings were of apprehension. Leaving behind a city I called home for 14 years (not to mention the best American city by far), San Francisco, leaving behind the friendships fostered in that time, leaving behind my wonderful apartment. It seemed as if the day of departure would never come, and in some ways I didn’t want it to come. Why go through upheaval and change, would it really be worth it in the end, would Japan be the right place for me. How would I get by in learning Japanese, how would I manage to live under the same roof with Naoko’s parents, how would I cope with finding a job, and most likely doing something I had never done before, teaching. And perhaps the biggest question of all, how would married life suit me, someone who never in his wildest dreams thought he would ever get married.
Perhaps predictably, since the moment I landed however, I’ve never looked back, and never had even one smidgen of regret about leaving the States. It hasn’t always been a smooth ride, but it has been a wondrous one, so many things coming together, so many unexepected discoveries, so many new directions in life that I never envisioned.
I have no idea how many more years Naoko and I and family will be in Japan, but I have a sneaky suspicion that it will go by even quicker than Year 1 did.