21st Day and More to Come.

They say it takes 21 days to form a habit. Today, I am on my 21st day of living in Miyazaki, Japan.

Work has been all about learning how things get done and getting acquainted with people in the office. Observing and asking. Sometimes, even asking if they need help with anything coz there are idle times for now. I get one weekday off which changes depending on my manager's mood and a Sunday off.

This is a photo dump of some of the few things that happened for the past 21 days.

I forgot the name of this pathway, but my colleague said that before passing through this red posts, one must make a wish. 

I will take a photo of this certain tree per season and see how it changes through time. 

This is one of the famous dishes here in Miyazaki, Chicken Nanban 

After a long day, there is a spot called foot bath and it's for free! It feels good to soak one's feet in warm water after an hour of cycling. One just needs to bring his/her own towel for wiping and drying. 

Having my daily dose of matcha with this local version of "puto" from Daiso. 

One of tmust-visit restaurant coz they have a menu in english. LOL. Sobrang sulit ng food for only 680 yen. 

Pork ginger on top of shredded cabbage salad with tofu. Yummmersss! 

This is a great place to buy second had stuff and gadgets. My eyes glittered seeing the Casio, Roland and Yamaha stuff! My sister and my father will find this place a heaven on earth. LOL. 

Slowly filling up the walls of my soon-to-be classroom. 

My Irish colleague suggested I visit this gai-jin bar (foreigners' bar) named The Bar. The lady-owner had been so welcoming and she speaks tagalog too! The guy was a Kiwi surfer who loved Miyazaki and put up this bar instead. They've been in the city for more than a decade now.  

The local beer. Ang mahal ng beer dito! Whyyyyyyyyyy........

This is like their Divisoria complex. 

I bought this veggie without even knowing it's name. Thanks to google translate, it told me, its name is chrysanthemum which I didn't believe at first so I had to send a photo to my cousin who lives in Niigata and asked if its edible. LOL. 

Tried cooking that famous winter soup-- Nabe. Well, I just bought the soup in the grocery and just started dumping veggies and meat the covered it until it turned to a boil. 

If I Wanna Grow Old with a Cat

I just finished watching A Street Cat Named Bob. A movie based from a true story and book of the same title published in 2012.

It had become a habit to stream on a movie or an episode as a night cap. The very fast internet speed connection really got a "whoaaaa!" from me.

Going back to the movie. It's a story about a junkie who decided to be on a rehabilitation program and at the start of his journey, a cat, barged into his home and never left his side from then on.

It made me think then, if I wanna get old with a cat. Just a cat. Kinda lonely, but James, the protag in the story, found his meaning with the cat, Bob, by his side.

I cried for most drama parts of the story.

This is one of those days that it feels lonely. Though, I always hurry home from work and virtually join my family for dinner, it's still feels different if there's someone I can come home to. Tell about my day, complain about little things, encourage each other, talk about just anything and pet a cat with. Haha. The cat will always be part of the story.

I'm just being the emotional me. I've been so overwhelmed with how things are turning out for me that I wish I have that someone I can just talk to about everything that's happening in my life. Social media has been a great way for people to know where I am at now and I have received many well-wishes that I just can't think of reasons why I am receiving so much love. Someday, I am not even sure if I can take care of a cat since I am allergic to it but maybe someday,  I'll come across that someone and we will pet a cat together.

After all, God had been so kind and faithful and true to His promises to me. He hasn't given anything that's not yet due on it's due time.

On a different story, my sister bought her cat, Tofu, a jersey, a blue one with a Japan imprint on it. Now, Papa is asking, where's the shirt for his favorite cat, Jude....

Miyazaki Narrative: The Arrival

On January 11th, 2017, I took a flight bound to Fukuoka via Philippine Airlines. My parents and I were at the airport as early as 4am. It was an opportunity for my parents to meet the people from the agency who were behind our employment. Should there be any concerns in the future, at least my parents know who to reach out to. My father earlier since he still has something else to do.

Papa: Oh sya, aalis na ko. (Biglang tumalikod)
Me: Pa naman eh. Payakap muna.

Which he did. That was the first time I hugged him again after a very long time. The closest physical contact we ever had before that were the usual "pagmamano" or me putting my arms on his shoulders. I will always cherish that hug. The warmth and comfort it brought, I will always remember.

Mama and I waited for my other two sisters to arrive. I was also happy that my Tito and Tita woke up very early in the morning just to bid me goodbye as well.

My fellow teachers were a bit shocked that there were so many people who sent me off. I just joked that they were just happy to see me leave and can't wait. LOL.

My kuya didn't come to the airport anymore but we dined out the night before my flight. My other younger brother also didn't go. I just kissed him and woke him up real quick before I left. He then messaged me on Skype to say sorry and that he had to sleep because he had an interview that morning. I told him, it's okay. I was just being the melodramatic sister that I am.

Last December 2015, I took a flight bound for Legazpi and I remember posting about it on Instagram and that I hoped that my next flight will be an international one. And it happened. I never had any flight projects in 2016 nor any local flights for holidays back then. The flight after that was this one bound for Miyazaki. I can't thank the Lord enough for everything. Really.

Though, my arrival to Fukuoka Airport was a quite an event to remember.

I have a connecting flight bound to Miyazaki just an hour after my arrival in Fukuoka. As per the Welcome Kit, after the clearing in the Immigration section, I am to take a bus bound to the Domestic Airport, that would take more or less 8-15 minutes, enough for me to get into the check in counter and get on another bus that will take us to the plane on the runway. Flight will take 35 minutes and somebody from the Miyazaki branch will pick me up at the airport. Bring me to my house and then take me to the office to be welcomed by everyone.

That was how it was supposed to be.

But then, at the immigration, we were asked to take a seat at the corner where there is a table an a long chair. Apparently, there is a discrepancy with what appears on our Certificate of Eligibility and the visa stamped on our passport. The five of us were all held and asked to proceed to that little corner in the immigration section.

Just imagine how scared I was.

I told the immigration officer that I have a connecting flight in an hour. She then just made a few phone calls, asked for our passport and COE then returned to her office to make more phone calls.

After 30 minutes or so, she returned with our passports and our printed residence cards. A moment of relief for all of us. We took our exit and the airport staff were kind enough to sort out our baggage from the conveyors.

I missed the flight and had to wait for another 3 hours for the next flight. I was so tired. I didn't even bother to stand up where I was seated until the announcement for my flight. I am also scared just because I can't understand almost everything around me. I can barely read and understand a thing. The almost three hours of waiting would have been a good time to go around. But I didn't do that.

I felt so tired. I felt under-dressed when I saw the other passengers who were waiting. I was wearing just one-layered coat but I do have my leather gloves and bonnet with me.

I arrived at the Miyazaki Airport around 8:30pm, 3 hours past the expected 5pm arrival. Then, another 20 minutes to drop off my stuff at my new home, get my keys and the souvenirs. My new boss then took me to the office where everyone was waiting. It was very late yet they still waited for me. My Filipina colleague and I walked home together. The first of the many afterwork walks and cyclings that will happen.

I was so tired that night yet I didn't sleep well. I was thinking of all the mess and all the scattered stuff on the floor and what to wear the next day.

1.11.2017, I will never forget.

Aside from my father's assignment for me, that is to find our ancestors from here, I look forward to an amazing Japan experience. My heart is always full of gratefulness to each and everyone.

Miyazaki Hits

I am on my 9th day today in Miyazaki, Japan. It's winter and since this is a subtropic region, i experience no snow but the coldness really can drop to as low as 0 degrees Celsius. Enough to get those winter clothes up for a strut. I bought only one trench coat and several thick, knitted clothes to keep me warm this winter.

Except for a local cellphone number, I am almost settled in where I am at.

Mga iilang ganap sa buhay ko dito ngayon:

1. Time is time. No bumper to bumper traffic issues here!

2. Having a bike is a must.

3. I still do the local conversions of prices.

4. I may not have jetlag. But my metabolism seems to take its time for adjustment. If you know what I mean.

5. I tried Tinder. There are a lot within 3 miles but I'm a little scared. Though, this is one of the safest places, I still need to be careful.

6. Mama has Skype account and she knows how to call me in now! Hurray!

7. Tomorrow, I will start my Nihonggo classes.

8. Naging hobby ko na yata ang magpabalik-balik sa Maxvalu (ang equivalent ng Hypermart) at sa Daiso araw-araw.

9. Wala pa kong ginagawang meal planning sa ngayon, pero nachchallenge ng bongga ang aking cooking skills dito!

10. Nung una akala ko gaganda ko dito, tapos pagtingin ko sa salamin, ang haggard ng face ko! Superdry ang skin dahil sa lamig, dark circles around the eyes and ang hair, mukhang magsusuperdry na rin dahil araw-araw blow dry. Haybuhay.

But, so far, so good. I haven't taken a lot of photos since I arrived. I am honestly oerwhelmed and I am still trying to absorb the feeling that I am here.

Hope to get around Miyazaki, activate the shutterbug in me and be able to fulfill my next dreams for myself and my family.