Wednesday, 18 May 2016

Extroverted me, Introverted me.

I found this page sometime last year. This page was the background to my Japanese language blog about ambiverts.

Today I would like to look at 2 statements from this page and relate them to my experience.

First of all number 13.

13. Too much time spent alone can leave you a bit downcast and you're concerned that it's not very productive.

The first time I came to Japan was at the end of March 1992. For 9 months I would go to school in the morning to study Japanese and then in the afternoon and early evening I would do some part time work at Korakuen Amusement Park in the middle of Tokyo. At that time I couldn't really speak Japanese so the first 6 months was quite trying.

Also for an ambivert, meeting new people is quite tiring. We have a whole host of questions in our mind, "what is this person like?" "Can I trust this person?" "Is this person friend or foe?" It is very difficult.

Therefore when I was working at Korakuen, there were many days that I would just spend the whole day in my room. Usually this was on a Sunday. Sundays at the amusement park were as you can probably imagine, very crowded and for an ambivert like me that sounds like not the best way to end the week. The best ways to avoid those crowds of people was to stay in my room and to not talk to anyone.

Next, lets have a look at number 14.

14. And some of the best weekends of your life have been when you didn't go home for three days.

Yes, I have had a few weekends exactly like that.

In 1997 I returned to Japan and worked for the Japanese government as an Assistant Language Teacher in Kimistu, Chiba Prefecture, a prefecture boarding onto Tokyo. Of course, from the beginning it was trying. There were lots of people who I didn't know. I had absolutely no experience in the work that I was supposed to be doing and what I thought was even worse was that the schools that I went to had no idea how to use me in their organisations.

In spite of all this I gradually started meeting the various foreign people who lived in the neighbouring cities as well as locals who had overseas experience. I made friends and started to be invited to various parties and gatherings.

One particular weekend we decided to go to Tokyo for a bit of a night out. Usually I would play soccer or baseball or basketball after school but this particular Friday I went home straight away and went to Roppongi which is a very interesting entertainment district in Tokyo. For me when I was living in Tokyo going to Roppongi was very rare and I got quite excited about it this particular day. Ironically, now, I live about 500 meters or ten minutes walk from Roppongi Station. When I was living in Kimitsu, it took about two and a half hours to get there by train.

Anyway, we make out way to Ropppongi and we have a good night drinking, dancing, flirting and I arrive home at my apartment at 8.30am the next day. I immediately crash on my bed and within seconds I am sleeping like a log. At 10am I get a call from a friend inviting me to come with him to the beach. I love the beach and it didn't take me long to say yes. Even though I had only one hour of sleep we all piled into my car and went off to the beach. At the end of the day at the beach, the four of us decided to go to a famous bar on the way home. We were there until about 3am and I finally got home at about 4 or 5 am. I have no idea what I did on the Sunday ...

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