The Rebirth of J

Yesterday, I went to the concert of Jaejoong in Yokohama.  It was so great I wanted to write this post, to remember it forever.

英語と日本語で書いてさせていただきます~ ここはジェジュンの横浜ライブについて書きます。昨日に行ってきて、すごかったです。一生忘れたくないライブなので、ブログに書くことにしました。

Happy to be able to go

Now, I’ve been a TVXQ fan for years, since I was in High school. I’m now in my masters already. They broke up but I wanted to hear them live. When the members and former members went to Europe, I couldn’t go because it was not in my country and it would be too expensive and I would have school the next day.
But I said to myself, I HAD to go to a concert of at least one of them during my exchange student year in Japan. Sadly, they all went to do their military service. But I had calculated Jaejoong`s return would be a little bit before I leave again so IF I would be lucky and he decided to immediately give a concert, I would grab this chance. No matter what, I would even skip classes for it, luckily I didn`t have to. Because Jaejoong somehow decided to fulfill my wish and gave a concert on a day where I practically had nothing to do.
It was actually thanks to a friend of mine I could get a hand of a ticket. I cannot express how thankful I am to her. Akari and Akari’s mother, you are the best

高校生の時から東方神起が大好きな私はもう大学院生です。東方神起は2人と3人になってしまいましたが、必ず一人だけでもライブに行くこを決心しました。何回もヨーロッパに来てくれましたが、次の日が学校だったり、お金がなかったり、私の都合でなかなかいけませんでした。

しかし、せめて留学中は行きたいと前から決めました。しかし、ちょうど私が日本に来たとき、みんなが徴兵制にいってしまいました。一番早く行ってしまったジェジュンは私の留学期間の終わりぐらい帰ってくれるからちょうラッキーだったらライブやってくれるかもとずっと考えましたが本当にそうしてくれると思わなかったです。しかし、願いが叶いました。

実はチケットを手に入れたのは友達と友達のお母さんのおかげです。私の感謝の気持ちを言葉にできません。あかりとあかりおかあさん、最高です!!

Before

So yesterday was the day I`ve been waiting for.

Yokohama Arena was easy to find. I bought some onigiri at the convenience shop and a few cookies. I felt like I needed some sugar to get me through the concert without passing out. Everyone had received a seating number so no fighting to get in. It went actually very smooth. I bought a light stick (although it was only the 2nd day in Japan, a lot of goods were already sold out) and went to my seating. I went to the toilet three times before it would start. I mean, at that moment it was my biggest fear to want to go to the toilet during the performance.

I returned to my seat and the woman next to me asked me where I came from. I mean, as a foreigner with blonde hair, people notice me. I got into a talk with them and they seemed nice. I was actually happy they had talked to me because most Japanese are shy.

そして、昨日とうとう来ました。

横浜アリーナは新横浜駅からわかりやすかったです。行く前に、コンビニでおにぎりやクッキー買いました。ライブ中倒れないようにどうしても糖分が必要でと思ったからです。席は指定席だったから、入場するのは簡単で、スムーズにできました。Light stick を買って(売り切れたグッズはたくさんありました)席に行きました。ライブ中にトイレに行きたくなるのがあまりのも怖くて、三回いっておきました。苦笑

席に戻ったら、隣のおばさんが話しかけてくれて、二人にいい感じに話せました。外国人の金髪の私は目立つかな。。。と感じました。とにかく、二人に少し親しくなりました。

The performance

Jaejoong didn’t let us wait for a long time until he started. At first, he felt far away, although we were in the same space. My seat was quite far I guess. People around me used binoculars.At first I felt weird. This man, I had adored since a quite long time, is now singing there and giving his all for this concert, where I am a part of the overwhelming red-white glittering crowd. The Japanese crowd has its own way to react to Jaejoong’s words, with a lot of Japanese eeeeee and aaaaa and I could like effortlessly get into this Japanese mentality. I understood what Jaejoong was saying. His Japanese is the cutest Japanese I have ever heard. I noticed some similarities with the Japanese of other Koreans I know. But Jaejoong’s voice and how he acted, it melted into one and made me fall for him. How he was enjoying his stage, how he interacted with the fans, it made me fall for his charms.
There was this one part where he looked into the cameras into the crowd and talked to us, fans through that. It is a clever way to interact with fans. He also showed some fans of Chile. Around me then, the Japansese wanted  me to speak up and tell Jaejoong I came from far too. Like everyone was looking at me. But I felt so embarassed and unimportant, but thinking about it now, I should`ve been selfish and try to speak up too.
Jaejoong obviously loved interacting with his crowd and his manly fans too. he also loved talking. Like a lot of, how do you call it? small talk! He did a lot of small talk or talk about his friends or experiences or how he thought his Japanese got worse and he should study more (Jaejoong, let`s study together!!) . I actually could really relate with his Japanese learn`-talk.
He had even made a few Japanese versions of his Korean songs although he only was discharged from the army 1 month ago. I could really see he loved his Japanese crowd and being in Japan. I mean… his Japanese was the cutest Japanese ever, had I mentioned that already? it was killing me.
During the performance my emotions went from crying, remembering all the sad times where I had relied on TVXQ or Jaejoong’s music, remembering all the hardships I had went through, to an unbelievable happy feeling (during the uplifting songs like Good morning night, from which he did the refrain like… 7 times?? I didn’t count, even when he was tired, the fans wanted more and more so he gave us more. We also did the good morning J variant!
I couldn’t believe how quickly these 3 amazing hours went by. Before I knew it, we were singing Ill protect you, together with Jaejoong. He promised a Japanese version. Oh please do!! But I couldn’t notice him getting tired and he also had to suppress his cough a few times so maybe he was getting sick. I hope he rests enough.

始まりまで、長く待たせなかったジェジュン。最初は遠く感じました。本当にどうしても届けない人みたいに。肉体的にもむりでしたが、かなり離れていた席に与えられたので。。最初は、変な感じでした。数年間あこがれた人は私の前に立って、話して、歌っているって。その人からしたら、私はあの赤く白く光っている群れの一人でした。ジェジュンの行為、声、日本語の話し方、全部を心があふれるほど好きになってたまらなかったのです。

カメラに通して、ファンに話しました。チレからきた人も見せましたが、そのとき、私の隣の人が振り向いて私を見ました。私も遠くから来た人で、それをジェジュンに伝えと隣のおばさんが言ってくれましたが、

たしかベルギー人なかなかいないんですが、

恥ずかしくて黙ったんです。でも、あのとき、少しセルフィッシュになって話してみるべきだったと思います。いや、叫ぶべきでした。

ジェジュンはファンと話し合うのがすごく楽しんでたみたいですけど、雑談も多かったです。いろいろ話してくれてすごく面白かったのです。特に日本語を学ぶや話すのが難しいという話に同情しました。なぜなら、いまのファンの中では、それをわかる人あまりいないでしょう?日本語がペラペラでもいろいろ忘れちゃうし、大変です。

そして、感動したところはもう一つあります。日本語版を三つも歌ってくれました。徴兵制から帰ってきた二か月もたってないのに。日本人のファンや日本に対しての愛が感じられました。

ライブ中、私の感情はいろいろ左右されました。泣いたり、わくわくしたりしました。東方神起やジェジュンの音楽を聴いてたつらいときを思い出したり、今までの大変な時を思い出して、どのぐらいジェジュンに会いたかったのか思い出して泣きました。

曲やジェジュンのリズムを感じ、ジャンプしたり、わくわくしたりして、最高にうれしかったです。good morning nightは疲れてても何回も繰り返し、楽しかったです。ジェジュン、ありがとう!good morning J版もやりました!

この三時間は本当にあっという間にすぎました。もう最後の曲が来て、ジェジュンと一緒に「守ってあげる」を歌ってて、感動しました。でも、ジェジュンがどんどん疲れてきたと気づいたし、ジェジュンも休む時間必要ですよね

三時間かなり激しいかもしれません!! でもありがたいジェジュンの三時間です。

Me in heaven

I don`t regret paying alot going to this concert, it was worth all the money and I definately would go again if I have the chance!! It has been a long time since my heart beat so much of excitement.

このライブは後悔は残ってない。もう一度行く機会あれば、ぜひお金を貯めて行きたいです!どうしても!またジェジュンに会いたいです!私の心臓がこんなにわくわくで早く打ったのが久しぶりもんです!

 

 

 

 

I’m starting yoga classes in Japan?

There are 2 main reasons I wanted to start yoga in Japan. 

1) I noticed my stress is getting worse again

2) I noticed I may be addicted to gym-treadmill or exercises in general? It sounds strange but I’m having difficulties stopping when being at the gym… and lately I’ve been pushing myself more and it takes some time to recover for my body. 
So I wanted some relaxing exercise where I still can sweat or move my body. And I’ve wanted to try yoga for some time.

So when I started googling it up, I found ‘Lava Yoga’, a yoga studio nearby.

So, I went to ‘Lava yoga’ for a try-out lesson. 

I went 30 minutes earlier as asked when reserving the lesson. I had to fill in some formulars and they let me choose between 3 courses, each with a different price. 

  • Only the lesson
  • Lesson + some health benefit drinks
  • Don’t remember but there was a lot included

I tried out the drink one. Because my hands were so cold again and the drink should be good against that.

There was another girl there to try-out. She was thin and elegant but I couldn’t grasp her age, somewhere end teenagers until mid twenties. She turned out to be 20. 

The instructor was so sweet. She is about my age and seemed very enthousiast and genuinly happy to have us in her lesson. 

The lesson itself was held in a warm room, with some 20 other woman, ages ranging from 20 untill somewhat in the 60. But Japanese DO tend to look younger than their age so I honestly don’t know.

I tried to follow the instrutrice , trying to understand the Japanese while relaxing. There was a lot of Japanese specific to exercises or yoga and sometimes I misunderstood, so when secretely glancing at the person next to me, I immediately changed my position. 

Although being a beginner, I think I did a good job. It was really refreshing and actually fun. My stomach felt better. 

So I decided to become a member. They were holding a campaign so I can now enjoy the benefits of being a ‘full free member’. Which means I can borrow towels for free, can go whenever and wherever to the studio. 
I hope I can feel the benefits of yoga soon. Anyway, I’m really excited. 

Chosen daigaku school festival

Last sunday I went to the ‘chosen’ university school festival. One of my friends, a ‘zainichi’ Korean (a Korean who lives in Japan- there actually is a complicated and painful history behind this) went to this school as a bachelor student and invited us to the festival. I guess it’s rare for the school to open up? I arrived quite late since I had the ‘hangul kentei'( a kind of Korean language proficiency test). I wanted to the try a traditional Korean dress but came to late for that which is a pity. They had a lot of stands with food or small traditional goodies. They also performed some acts on the stage. I really was impressed by the fashion show. So pretttyy!!
I’m so glad I could go! 

Having a Western life style in Japan

When I first came to Japan, I tried all kind of Japanese dishes. I thought, since I am in Japan, I should try to experience the Japanese life style. Especially cooking Japanese (also because cooking Western can be very expensive here). But as much as I love Japanese food, I notice I feel better eating western-ish food. It’s really remarkable how important food habits are for your mental health too. I can’t really explain it, but it might be an inconsiousness ‘habit’, part of who you are, your cultural background you grew up in (this idea is a bit of Bourdieu’s term ‘habits’). It’s lingering deep inside yourself…

Anyway, maintaining this Western life style or life style I feel the best with (which is eating as healthy as possible) is a bit expensive in Japan because

  • Staples get expensiver (whole weat spaghetti, peanut butter, etc) 
  • Fruit is so expensive
  • My favourite granola or cornflakes also are more expensive … a lot
  • Cheese is also expensive bit I don’t eat cheese so it’s ok
  • Western food is mostly importer so it’ll be expensiver

The shops I go the most to are (besides the normal supermarket) 

  • Kaldi
  • Seijo Ishi
  • Natural House, Lima, or other  biological shops

In these shops I will get chick peas or legumes, tortilla wraps, sriracha, peanuts butter, european-ish bread, whole wheat spaghetti, non sugared almond milk

In my local supermarket I will wait untill they have their ‘sales’day once a week where fruit and veggies get cheaper. 

If I don’t plan it’s really too expensive and by planning ahead I can save a lot of money by calculating in those ‘sale’ days.
Examples: 

Butternut black beans oat burger

Crackers

Pitta


I feel so much better since I eat like this! So conclusion: if I want to live in Japan, I’ll need a good job. 

Vegan gourmet festival in Tokyo

Hey, it’s been such a long time since I wrote something… I’ve been so busy with preparing for the JLPT (japanese language proficiency test) and the ‘hangul kentei’ (a korean proficiency test). And of course, busy living my life 😂😂
So this post is about a vegan festival I went to a month ago with a friend (she’s Japanese and 8:2 ratio vegan because she eats meat when eating with her boyfriend. I think it’s interesting that in Japan most vegans are vegan because of health reasons rather than ethical) 

Anyway it was held in a huuuge park km Kiba in Tokyo and althoug h it was october it was SO hot. Definately dressed up to warm. 
We walked around and talked a bit. We ate a taco rice and a matcha crepe (we were sooo full after that). Taco rice is an Okinawan speciality and the stand selling it also really came from Okinawa to Tokyo for this event. Which deserves an applause. Other shops were from Tokyo, Kyoto and Nagoya mainly. 
This crepe was soooooooooo good. The matcha made it a bit bitter and not too sweet and the matcha creme inside was soooooo indulging. Mixed with Azuki red beans and chestnuts and something crunchy… this was the best crepe I have ever eaten. No.regrets.at.all.

I bought some vegan cheese, this will be the first time eating vegan cheese. It was good though! 
These pumpkin cookies were soooo cute and tasted even better. Really, like the batter melts in your mouth and leaves a pleasant after taste. 

Do I need further explanation??I mean matcha Azuki brownies. Two of my most favourite Japanese foods combined in a brownie?? Instant buy (was really cheap actually) 

These kale chips… HAVE to find them again. Too expensive in other shops and these were like too good. 

It was a nice day! 

I actually want Japanese people to be a little more aware of what they are eating. I mean fish stock is used for like everything and even ‘vegetable cooking’ in restaurants contains meat… the concept of vegetarianism clearly isn’t well-known and wenn it is, it’s mostly because of health reasons…

Me after one week of classes

Tired

But I feel like it’s getting easier to follow in class. Has my Japanese improved? Is it because I feel less tired??  I don’t know but I do know I had some strength left to do some cleaning on this lazy sunday morning. Maybe because I didn’t do a thing yesterday. Those days are needed too right? 

I’m still confused if it is ok to take the classes I’m planning to take but I’ll just register them and see what happens. Deadline is tomorrow.
I’m going to the gym again and I feel good. The teacher recognized my efforts! I felt so happy about that.
I’m meeting up with friends a lot too, or am planning to. I feel like I made so many good friends here…i feel sad when I think about leaving. I’m also confused about what to do next year… No clue.
Anyway this was a small update ^^  

Dairy log : counseling hour with my teacher

Last Wednesday, I had this counseling hour with my advising teacher, which I was so afraid of. I like my teacher but I was afraid I’d feel pressured again to take too many courses I can’t handle. But it went super good. She asvised me to write a ‘small’ paper (miniature thesis) untill january. I hope I won’t geg too stressed anymore. Stress seriously is a problem. But I really want to enjoy this last semester in Japan, in every way! Wether it is study, hanging out with friends, travelling or shopping (working on financing … Maybe I’ll get a student job). 

Anyway, I am so happy I don’t have to take tons of courses. I hope so. 

I finally got a microwave

Guys, it’s standing there… In my kitchen… Right now! I cooked one year without it. This will sooooo speed things up. Omg I’m just… Why did I wait so long?

I guess I listened too much to other people. To cut the story shory. Then I started thinking in terms of ‘only a year’. And so on. ‘Only a half year’ it is now. But 

I won’t hold back too much. I know where it led me. Will not go there again. 

Anyway I had to carry it home myself though. It was sooooo heavy. Any of you ever carried a microwave in package for 15 mins? 

Ok, maybe I’m not the strongest. I managed though ✌️