Back in Japan

I’m back in Japan for ten days. I arrived yesterday in the early evening, after what can only be described as a fantastic flight. When checking in at the Brisbane airport I had asked for first row seats, since the first row of economy seats have by-your-side storage compartments and lots of legroom. The guy running the checkin said he could get me first row window, no problem. Great, I said, and it was great.

It wasn’t until I got onto the plane and the stewardess directed me to the very front of the plane that I realized – first row, the very front of the plane, is business class. Wahoot! I was pampered in luxury the whole way over. The flight, normally about eight hours, seemed like six. Or five! Barely had I gotten used to it all that it was over. Good times.

So Japan – wow. It’s like I never left. Except everything’s different. Despite all the familiar neighborhoods and sights, there’s a ton of new buildings near the place I’m staying. And wow, the changes made to 7-11. Crazy. All the smells of the old house I’m in are immediately familar from the year I spent living here when I first moved to Japan, and Zumi’s mom cooked up a massive great meal, the kind she used to make. It was deleriously cool.

It’s nice to be home. Despite never really synching with Japan I do feel more at home here than Australia, no doubt because I’ve only been in Australia for twelve months. Japan’s so wonderfully dynamic. Every week there’s something new in 7-11, or some crazy event to go see, or some wacky thing on TV. By comparison Australia’s in a coma. Nothing changes, tho from what everyone says it’s much better now than it was even a decade ago.

Yeah, that’s true, even my own recollections of a decade ago in Australia lend credence to that, but still… Australians are too complacent and too unwilling to complain, so nothing changes for them. The Japanese on the other hand are kept in a constant state of distraction, to take their minds off their cramped little polluted corrupted society.

I really feel that once you’ve travelled you realize that everywhere sucks, but in different ways. When you live a life as ludicrously unproductive as mine, where the important things are trivial and ill-considered at best, then you’re just never happy.

And this is the lesson I can’t convince Australians is true: If you don’t kick up a fuss, nothing changes. You may think I’m whining now, but if someone joins my crusade and something changes, then we all win. I’m complaining for all of us, you lazy sack of ‘roo dung. Your complacency hurts everyone.

I’m digressing.

Today’s new camera day if I have any input on the matter. The budgeting committee is still somewhat happy to have me around, so I think I can push this one through.

Going to Akihabara in a few minutes to meet up with a friend from Holland, for a day of excessive consumerism, buying things that Australians don’t even dream of, for no good reason except that I can.

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