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I’m a juice cleanse failure

13 Jun

Well I started with this grand idea to do a 5 day juice cleanse thanks to an awesome Living Social deal. In hindsight it would have made more sense to try and survive a one day cleanse but I was attempting to be bad ass. The first day I woke up late and started at around 11am and by 4pm I was starving and broke down to some chicken bean rice dinner. The second day I started on time but was unable to gag my way through the third green smoothie. I broke down and at leftover salad for dinner. The third day I attempted to try again and was off to great start. Then my energy level tanked and I was super cranky. A quick chicken salad cleared my mood right up. Today was the only “successful” day and I still feel awful. I’m thinking of all the pizza and burgers I could eat. Some serious mental torture! I’m also sweaty and a bit foggy brained.

All in all I will definitely appreciate a healthy balanced diet after this ordeal. Eating healthy will always beat straight juice for me. I love smoothies and will continue to eat those once a day since they have the fiber, veggies and fruits I need for the day all in one. I want to try to eat vegan a few days a week as well. Moral of the story for me is to make life changes and not quick fixes!

Stateside, Fellowships and more travel!

27 May

Well things didn’t go exactly as planned (do they ever?) and now I’m back stateside for the 6 weeks. After my last post in Dubai I returned to the US for what was supposed to be a week long trip but family problems and finances kept me here. Since I never planned on staying here all my stuff is still in Japan! Luckily I found an awesome deal for $600 r/t from vancouver to Tokyo and I will get to go back, say my goodbyes and get all my things. 

This summer I will be at Beloit College’s Center for Language Studies Program-Japanese. Starts in 3 weeks and is basically a super intensive 8 week long language camp. Middlebury was too expensive at the Monterey Institute cancelled their Japanese program so here I am. Luckily I get to take an extended break in Japan over the fourth of July (5 days!) to put my hopefully improved language skills to test. They also gave me a $1,000 scholarship even though I applied late so check their program out here at http://www.beloit.edu/cls/apply/

Next up on my travel list is Jamaica around the end of August. It will be a 4 day weekend type trip before I delve into applying for a bajillion things senior year. I need to narrow down my list to one country fora potential Fullbright opportunity. Right now its between

~Teaching in Bangladesh, Vietnam, Colombia or Bulgaria ~A masters degree in Mexico ~Research and Language studies in Japan

Basically teaching in either country would be extremely different than all that I’ve ever experienced, a masters degree would be useful and probably improve my Spanish 10 fold although I’d have to come back and get another degree in the States so more for experience and the program in Japan would hone in on my language skills and develop some research skills. What do you all think I should do? There is still is Princeton in Africa, MEXT scholarship, Pickering Fellowship and the Carnegie Fellowship that are definitely on the radar since nothing is promised to me!

Fun times in the United Arab Emirates with Insight Dubai

17 Apr

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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These are a few photos from the conference I attended last month in Dubai. It was an all women’s conference that focused on Sha’ria Law and human trafficking. Jam packed with activities all day long but I recommend you ladies give it a shot in 2015. It gives an honest insight into the Emirati culture and no they aren’t paying me to write this lol! 

On another note I will be posting my reasons for leaving Japan and future plans in an upcoming blog post.

 

 

I thought college in Japan was supposed to be easy?

24 Oct

Well let me tell you now that that is a myth, well at least it is here at Tsuda. I am drowning in homework. Kanji test with 25 new Kanji and 80 vocab each week, 2 work sheets, 1 essay, reading 5 pages and meeting with a tutor once a week for 1.5 hours. The benefit is that my Japanese should be amazing when I leave next year.

Luckily I can escape on weekends but with curfew even that is hard. I spend my weekends eating crepes in Harajuku, shopping in Shibuya and karaoke in Kokubunji. I went to see the movie Hafu which is an excellent document about Biracial Japanese people. Check it out if you get a chance. It’s being released in cities around the world in the upcoming weeks. I also got to meet with a professional sumo wrestler this past week! Winter festival is coming up and I have a gymnastics meet that same weekend. Life is busy but better than the last time I blogged. I’m erasing people that cause me stress and focusing on enjoying my time abroad.Image

What’s the Difference Between Cultural Exchange and Cultural Appropriation?

18 Oct

Unsettling America

Courtesy of Elephant Journal(Related: “Cultural Appreciation or Cultural Appropriation?” and “Wanting To Be Indian“)

Jarune Uwujaren explains that there needs to be some element of mutual understanding, equality, and respect for it to be a true exchange.

From The Good Men Project

Cultural appropriation is a term that isn’t often heard in daily conversation, which means it’s inevitably misunderstood by those who feel attacked by feminists, sociologically-informed bloggers, and others who use the term.

Many a white person sporting dreadlocks or a bindi online has taken cultural appropriation to mean the policing of what white people can or can’t wear and enjoy.

Having considered their fashion choices a form of personal expression, some may feel unfairly targeted for simply dressing and acting in a way that feels comfortable for them.

The same can be said for those who find criticisms of the Harlem Shake meme and whatever it is Miley Cyrus did…

View original post 1,481 more words

Life in Japan 6 week check in

12 Oct

Life has been very hectic here in Japan. I think I have already went through the 2 phases of culture shock (honeymoom phase and the debbie downer phase) so now I’ve reached the acceptance phase. This means that I accept Japan for what it has and doesn’t have. I recognize that I will never find Welch’s fruit snacks, colby jack cheese, pepperoni or lawry salt seasoning. I’ve come to an understanding that carbs will make up 80% of my daily diet and that having 9 classes is normal here.

I’ve been filling up my days to stay busy. Trying not to thing about him (not so happy breakup before I left to Japan). I’ve been quite successful I must say. Gymnastics 3x a week and badminton 2x a week and maybe a boxing class here or there. Nothing beats throwing yourself into fitness regardless of the underlying reasons. Plus I have homework in 5-6 of my classes usually. I learn about 25 kanji a week and that is very stressful. Weekends I shop in Shibuya, sing karaoke for hours on end or go out to eat. All in all that equals a large chunk of money but it offers me piece of mind if that makes any sense. 

I’ve attached a few pics of my new cell phone, boxing class and from the welcome party at Tsuda. I have no idea why one of my friends covered herself with that thing lolImageImageImage

Classes have begun!

1 Oct

I started my first semester of classes of what will be a year long exchange here at Tsuda College for the semester. I must say that it is very intense compared to the 3-5 classes and average student in the US might have. I have 9 classes! I’m currently taking Kanji, Grammar, Reading, Conversation, Japanese Society, Japanese Modern History, Japanese seminar, Australian studies and Spanish 3 (random I know). They are all very interesting classes although my Spanish class is review of things I learned in in 201. They meet once a week.

I also joined the gymnastics club which is very intensive a most Japanese clubs are. Clubs in Japan meet 5-10 hours a week while circles are more social and may meet 1-2 hours a week. I practice on Mondays, Wednesday and Fridays from 4-7pm. No one speaks much english and I am definitely the awkward girl at practice but maybe that’ll change over the course of the next year. The have legit competitions and are even ordering a uniform for me. I may join the boxing club or samba club which practices twice a week at 7pm. Weight loss is on the horizon! It is the best way to form friendships with people my age so far.

My cooking has not improved and I mainly eat rice made with my lovely rice maker and curry packets. I supplement this with the occasional pancakes, cereal or eggs with green peppers. I attempted to make a hamburger and with only salt and pepper it turned into a giant breakfast sausage. I added syrup to make up for no ketchup. I’ve brought some vegetables and meat to make stew so I’ll let you know how that all goes. Fruit is very expensive in Japan due to the importation taxes so unfortunately I don’t eat many vegetables. I have found a new vegan restaurant in Tokyo that I plan to try out in the next couple of weeks. I need a cell phone to get around and use these train lines!

No pictures today but I promise to be more proactive in documenting my experience through photos 🙂