Japanimation Group 1- “A lOnG bLoG” by Laura

Hey everyone! Family, Friends, Potential Experimenters, my name is Laura and I’mma write y’all a blog. Prepare for a long read, cause I love to write.

Today, we spent our morning in anime class, learning Photoshop techniques, playing around with filters, and building our portfolios. I’ve been using Photoshop for at least a year and I still picked up some new tactics! Following class, we returned to our hostell to practise our lines for our voice acting segment this Friday, a redub of a soccer anime called Inazuma (Lightning) Eleven. I switched roles with David to play Endou because I love voice acting, and Endou had a lot of lines in the scene. We also grouped together to watch a little further into the scene to find out exactly what “God Hand” Was supposed to be.

After practise, the majority of us decided to go to Harajuku for the 2nd time as a group to further explore anime themed shops and animal cafes. Personally, I wanted to go so badly because Julian had informed me that there were Scout Regiment Capes in Harajuku for around $20, and I wanted to get myself and my best friend a cape. I was disappointed because the only ones I found were some cheap raincoat fabric cloaks for $150 in USD that were too small, and some Hoodies for $30. And I mean I love hoodies but it’s not what I was investing in, so I got neither. Julian is still sure he saw some so there may be some hope yet. On the bright side, my group of 4 (Barbara, Quinlan, Matt, and I) visited a rainbow-themed candy store with LITERALLY THE HUGEST COTTON CANDY YOU’VE EVER SEEN. As well as many adorable Lolita style fashion shops with extravagantly cutesy outfits. Honestly if they weren’t so expensive I might consider getting one. Or two. They were REALLY nice. We also stopped by the Tower Records store, unfortunately it’s not the 13th, so no Splatoon 2 exhibit yet for me, but a nearby building contained a huge One Piece store on the 7th floor, and Matt was REALLY stoked about that. There was also one small section for a couple of other animes, and I got a few pictures of grumpy AoT characters on keychains and a Season 3 poster on the wall. Btw I missed the 1st episode of it because it was airing at 2pm and we’re not allowed in the TV lounge then ;_;

But anyway. Today was really fun, though our feet were in some pain by the time we got back. And by some pain I mean it was heaven to sit even if only for a few seconds outside the train station. But it always works out, we get back, get fed, clean up, and we share the best parts of the day, as well as the worst parts, and what we look forward to doing. It’s a little thing the leaders told us about called Rose-Bud-Thorn. We sometimes mention during the day that some moment is definitely one of the 3. Anyway, that’s what happened today.

Probably the best aspect of this program has got to be the dynamics within our group. Group members have all got similar interests, like, 100% of us love anime, 65% love Pokemon, and about 65% also love Boku no Hero Academia. I’m not among that last one, but it’s super fun to watch everyone getting excited and talking about it! We also get along amazingly well, it’s totally incredible. And most of us love vines and memes and stuff, it’s great. And everyone is super open and accepting and supportive. And everyone is unique and charming too! I’m a relatively introverted human, but I can’t feel truly uncomfortable around these guys. We’re gonna cry when we have to leave. My second favorite part of this program (outside of the opportunity to buy a ton of Japanese exclusive stuff,) is this concept our group has been given called “Challenge by choice.” While we are meant to go a little outside our comfort zone by doing things like ordering food for ourselves in Japanese, going on the subway trains, trying new foods and stuff, if anything is too much, we’re not forced to do it. I actually had a nervous breakdown the other day, and I won’t go into detail but it was not pleasant…and I was told not to push myself into that kind of stress. If anything is too much and you need to recharge a bit and take it easy, don’t be afraid to take some alone time. Of course, the program is amazing, so I don’t know if it’s just me, but it’s very easy to bounce back in with everybody else after a bit of recovery. The program is about experiencing new aspects of life, learning what life here is like, and having fun exploring and meeting new people. If anything is making it more difficult to have fun, take the time to make things right again. That should apply to any life situation, really. Everyone, including you, should be happy.

We also have a surprising amount of freedom! While there are organized outings and places we all go to together, we are allowed input for places we’d like to go to see sights and buy stuff. And upon arrival, we often are sent out in groups of three (or more!) to do whatever we’d like, so long as we don’t do anything illegal, don’t leave the general area, and we all meet up again at a set time. Of course, homestay week is slowly but surely creeping up. But I think we’re gonna be ok. We might have some trouble settling in at first, but everyone is really excited, Adam is staying with a family with a dog, I think, and Matt has been gushing about his new little brother. I’m personally a little apprehensive that I might forget a rule in the household or be a bad influence on my 3 little sisters, but I think overall it’s gonna be a good time.

This is probably gonna be my longest blog because a lot has happened this week and a lot has not been at least mentioned before (by me anyway,) and the while point of the blog is to paint a sort of picture of what life is like here. But really all you gotta know is don’t do anything illegal or dangerous, spend your money wisely cause there’s a lotta stuff you’ll wanna buy, and try not to be on your phone ALL the time. We sometimes have chill times where we hang out or just rest from a lot of walking, texting and stuff can wait until then, or more preferably before bed when more people are ready to sleep and simmer down than socialize. The most important part is to have fun and engage with your group whenever possible, cause trust me, that’s a lot more fun and unpredictable in the moment than texting your friend for hours while you’re walking around Tokyo. Especially since its really crowded, you don’t wanna lose your group. Phones aWAY when you’re in a crowded place. But yeah, it’s a lot of fun, and you’ll have more fun by getting involved than being glued to your phone for more than 15% of the time. Of course, Pictures are always good. I think pictures are the best use of your phone during the day, or organizing your wish list, including prices, places you saw everything, and how much you want it.

I… I do that. It keeps me from buying too many things and lets me save for other stuff. And if you don’t have a phone like I didn’t until 2 years ago, more power to you, you’ll probably have fewer problems with participation.

Okay that was a huge paragraph on phones how about we end it here. So like I said, it’s super fun, we’re super free, and classes are SUPER fun. Our teachers are usually almost, or AS enthusiastic about the topics as we are. It’s awesome. So I’ve rambled on for long enough, I’ll see you guys next week!

I think!

I’m not sure when the next blog is supposed to be!

Woop Woop!

~Laura L, Japanimation 1