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Jett in Japan

JAPAN | Thursday, 20 March 2008 | Views [1452]

In a Jimbe!

In a Jimbe!

He was 9 months old when we moved to Japan.

His first sentence was 'mitte! oki traku!' (look, a big truck)

He went to a Buddhist pre-school. We lived beside the Priest of the near by temple. I remember coming home from work and seeing him on the Priest's lap, slowly rubbing the mallet around the singing bowl in front of them.

Rightly, or wrongly, that was when I decided to leave Japan.

I was an English Teacher for the Pre school. I also taught adults in the evening.

We lived in a small town. Apart from the obvious, the first words I learnt were 'shiroii' (white) and 'Kawaii' (cute) - all for Jett. Grandmothers would squat flexibily in front of his little stroller and touch his white as white skin and marvel to each other. The older children at the pre school also indulged in pointing out Jett's differences.

He was treated specially, and personally, I didn't want him to develop a sense of his 'difference', before feeling his sense of belonging.

People often told me he bowed better than the other kids. And he did.He liked the life style.

He's 8 now and his favourite food is inari, vegetarian sushi and noodles. He thinks of himself as partly Japanese and tells people he can speak five languages. (English, Norwegian, Swedish, Spanish and Japanese) He can say sushi and jin jin..(the way he learnt to call his neather region when he was a toddler)

Tags: children

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