Almost a decade ago I’ve been in Japan mainland living, training Goju-ryu and working for a while. Now I return, but this time in Okinawa. I’ve made a blog of the trip before and I will repeat this now, but this time not in my twenties anymore but in my thirties and with the vision of a Social Psychologist. This is the travel diary.
For those who want to go to Japan and live in a third world country the first difficulty is to get the visa. For you to do tourism in a first world country it’s necessary to have money. Pour people are not welcome. Afterall, you could just run away and become an immigrant, and the common and stupid discourse is that immigrants are bad. Of course this isn’t only in Japan. In Brazil they also do this with the countries that are poorest than us and some brazilians feel, strangely, superior to other people of the third world.
Everyone feel free until they have to pass through to an immigration control center. Then you realise that you are not that free. The treatment in the many immigration points that you will need to pass is very unpleasant. In France, where I have pass on the two times I went to Japan (I don’t even dare go through the USA), the police are particularly more unpleasant, which has nothing to do with domestic terrorism, but with despize for the economic class (which, by the way, already costs a fortune). The first class just passes through.
The trip is exhaustive. Hours and hours in a seat worse than the trip buses in Brazil. Afterall, the companies profit must be total. Hours of wait in the airports and of course the scrutiny of the immigration and of the security of the airports. Checked and rechecked a thousand times. But finally you arrive.
When you get in Japan in the hundredth pass through the immigration the officer asks to open my bag. He inspects a lot and my bleckbelt is seen…
-Ohhhh, going where?
And, differently from the other airports, the inspection is not necessary anymore. I’m not one more gaijin going to do a mess in Japan, I’am one that respects their culture. And, if there is somthing that all folk in the world want is respect, in with almost everyone fails miserably, always decreasing or rising too much this or that culture or folk. Residents of big cities are masters on decreasing and disrespecting folks and cultures.
I took two steps out of the airport and a television crew came to talk to me. Although I don’t talk with journalists for many reasons that do not matter now, I understood that in Japan the stuation is different and conceived them an interview. Very supportive and interested, the guy asked many things when he discoevered that I was a Karateka and had lived there before. He treated me as I was a specialist and was very surprised when I answered that I wasn’t there to compete but to train to learn more. Then he asked how famous I was in Brazil. Course I said I was not famous and he became very surprise and confused. So I’ve been showed up on some japanese channel but I will never watch the interview. When walking in Tokyo all the memories of my last stay came back. Although it was only a few months, it seemed like a lifetime, and now it seems like memories of another life.
Then, after almost two days traveling, 3 planes and an airport switch in Tokyo at 0° Celcius, from the plane window I saw all the Okinawa island.
Burajirujin = brazilian
Gaijin = outsider