Location, Location, Location
So…Bill has posed the question – how will I make the most of my time in Japan? Well, the answer may not be the standard, but it’s true for a lot of people here – I’ll make the most of my time in Japan by getting out of Japan as often as possible. That’s right, folks, I’m all about international travel.
Being an ALT on the JET program is a unique opportunity. I’m young, much of my cost of living is subsidized – so I have some expendable income, and I have the ability to take chunks of vacation whenever the schedule has an opening. Also, I’m geographically much closer to a lot of places of interest than I was when living on the east coast of the United States. Most of Asia is just a hop, skip, and a jump away. I will likely never be in this situation again. I’d better make the most of it, no?
Some folks are far more serious than I am about travel, but I’ve still done my fair share. In my time here, I’ve been to South Korea, North Korea (technically…if you count 5 minutes over the line in the DMZ), Singapore, Malaysia, Hong Kong, Macau, and the Philippines. (Posts containing photos and video clips from each trip are available by searching around. Too many posts to link to here.) And I’m currently looking at a trip to Taiwan in March. Of course, I’ve done loads of travel inside Japan as well – again, far too much to even list.
I still want to go to Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam, Indonesia*, India*, Russia, mainland China, Australia, New Zealand, and some other spots. But we’ll see. I might be able to knock out 1/3 to 1/2 of that list by the end of my stay here. If not, I’ll at least give it my best shot. That’s how I plan on making the best of my time in Japan. Other than financially saving as much as I can – yes, it’s doable even with travel expenditures – and improving my Japanese, that is.
*Providing they are safe enough for me to go.
** Yes, I borrowed the map from GraphicMaps.com, so sue me. Figured I shouldn’t erase their watermark if I was gonna use their image. Ha ha.