Sunday, June 3, 2012

A bit of background..

Looking studious?

Hi my name is Anna, and I am a 20 year-old Australian girl, currently completing my third year of university studies in Osaka, Japan. I live with a fantastic host-family who I've been close friends with since a previous 10 month exchange here back in 2009.
I know from experience the roller coaster ride being on exchange can be. One minute I'm thanking my stars for this chance to learn about another culture first hand and experience so many strange and wonderful things, and then the next, I'm frustrated and confused at how different two culture's ways of thinking can be, why I can't seem to beat the emotional snacking, and pining over all the 21st birthday parties I’m missing out on back home!

Another element to my story is that I was only seven months into my first real relationship (ooooo!)before jetting off to Japan for the next year. This has brought with it a new element to studying abroad that I didn’t have back in 2009.   
Scott and I at Big Day Out in Jan

What I do remember from that last exchange is the 8 kilos I put on that year, and consequently not being able to fit any of my clothes or any of the clothes sold here! It wasn't too great for the self esteem and confidence, so is something I am actively trying to avoid this time around!
With so much running through my head lately with uni, hostfamily and other commitments, I was starting to get a little stressed out. My boyfriend (Scott) hates me not knowing exactly why I am stressed or down, so spoke with me on the phone last night until we came up with that writing a blog could be a good outlet and a chance for me to get creative and do some writing again. So basically I am starting this blog to somehow make sense of all the things I love and hate about being on exchange, and to share my thoughts and discoveries on culture, people, food, health, spirituality, and long distance relationships. I haven’t quite worked out why I so desperately needed to go on exchange again, but I am hoping that through the process I might also discover something about myself.
Host mother, father, grandmother, uncle and sister. Heading out to a picnic.