Monday, May 05, 2008

A small farewell party

Today is a double national holiday for me: Kodomo no Hi or Children’s Day in Japan and Bevrijdingsdag or Liberation Day (from German occupation) in the Netherlands. Being in Japan I didn’t celebrate Liberation Day and being Dutch I had no idea how to celebrate Children’s Day in Japan, so I just admired the many koinobori or carp streamers swimming beautifully through the air.

Even though I didn’t celebrate either national holiday I did have a party today, a little farewell party at Maiko’s house. Maiko is leaving for a 3-month training session in Tokyo tomorrow and of course I’m moving to Osaka in 3 weeks. Maiko’s mom cooked up a whole bunch of food and I brought along a bottle of pink Cava (Spanish Champagne). Maiko and her dad couldn’t drink because they were still driving somewhere later, so mainly her mom and I drank the deliciously sweet Cava. So we spent an evening eating, drinking, talking and I met Maiko’s brother, Yoshi for the first time tonight. He’s very fluent in English and sometimes facilitated communication between me and his not so fluent sister and parents. I also spoke some Japanese tonight! An old friend of Maiko’s dad called and everybody got to talk to him on the phone, including me. He didn’t speak English, so I had to make due with my limited Japanese, but he understood me and I understood him and I impressed the hell out of Maiko and her family! Of course, we didn’t discuss anything substantial on the phone, just some low-level small talk but it was still fun.

We had a fun evening but farewell parties are always kind of a downer, so it was kind of a sad celebration, especially when it was time to go home. Maiko’s mom was crying, and I assured her we’ll be seeing each other again in August when I’ll visit Inuyama with my family, but that didn’t seem to comfort her. So I just hugged her until she couldn’t breathe anymore. And I think I saw Maiko crying too when she drove away from my apartment a little while later. All those tears made me feel like crying too, but I somehow I managed to keep my eyes dry, but it took some effort. I’m a real crybaby and leaving Inuyama and all my adorable students behind is not going to be easy. But I’m going to try and control myself as much as I can, by not focusing on what I’m leaving behind and instead thinking about the exciting things that are ahead of me.

4 comments:

Sade said...

Hi, it's me again!
I know it's been awhile but I still faithfully read about all your awesome experiences! I don't want to ramble, but I did have two quick (kind of) comments:

I'll be studying for a year at a university in Nagoya starting this September so I feel kind of sad that you'll be leaving there! Maybe we can still meet up sometime in Osaka or something and karoke! Although, I don't really know Bon Jovi so well so maybe you can introduce him to me then too!
Also, Maiko's brother looks so cute! Not in the puppy way, but in the hey-I-think-that-guy-
is-good-looking-even-though-
he's-kind-of-hard-to-see-in-
the-picture way. Haha, that wasn't really important and kind of ridiculous, but I guess I'm too much of a boy-crazy girl sometimes!
Don't worry though, I'm not always like that(^_~)

Louise said...

Moeder van Maiko nam een beetje mijn plaaats is heej... en Maiko was niet alleen een student maar een vriendin.
En afscheid nemen is dan nooit leuk. Heel goed van je om voorruit te kijken ipv achterom wat je achterlaat. Ben heel trots op je poepie!!!! DVK XXXXXXXXXXXXX je moemie.

Minke said...

That's the good attitude! Leaving means also starting something new and exciting!
xxx

Yasu said...

Yes I know you speak Japanese Louana! You are such a quick learner, I'm proud of you! mwah We can see Maiko again! Hopefully someday I'll see her family too. mwah