Joel: So, Michele, how long have you been living in Japan? Can you speak Japanese now?
Michele: Well, in total it’s been almost four years now, I can speak a little now.
Joel: Four years. OK. That’s about the same for me too.
Michele: Oh, yeah.
Joel: Do you feel like your totally used to it? Are you acculturated?
Michele: I think so. At times there are still some things that are a little bit difficult but for the most part, I don’t have a culture shock anymore.
Joel: For example?
Michele: Something that I still struggle with?
Michele: Well, there’s still the language barrier because I’m still not fluent in Japanese so, like today I went to the bank and I was trying to do something that was a little out of the ordinary I guess I just had some trouble and I couldn’t get it done.
Joel: And you said you had gone back to the United States…
Joel: I’m sorry. You had gone back to Canada and did you have kind of reverse culture shock when you went back?
Michele: Yes, I did actually. I… at that time, I had lived in Japan for about three years and I returned to Canada and I was so used to living in Japan and I guess I had to change my thinking and behaviors a little bit while I was in Japan so when I went back to Canada I felt like, “OK, now I have to change back.”
Joel: The first thing I noticed when I had gone back to the United States was in the grocery store, the supermarket, when I was buying my food the cashier would talk to me and ask me questions.
Joel: And when I lived in Asia, the cashiers, they never talk to you, and it just threw me off. It threw me off guard. I was very surprised at how much just people you don’t know will approach you and talk to you and ask you questions.
Joel: Is it the same in Canada?
Michele: Yeah. Yeah. I think so. And I also noticed when I went back to Canada, especially I lived near Toronto, and there’s people from a lot of different countries in Toronto, I’ve been so used to seeing only Japanese pieces, so it was a little bit shock to see so many different pieces again whenever I back to Canada.
Joel: And also, you’re planning to move back soon again?
Michele: Well, I’m going to go back Canada in the summer for my holidays but then I’ll be back in Japan.
Joel: Oh, I see. What do you think you’ll miss most while you’re gone?
Michele: What will I miss about Japan?
Michele: I think I’ll miss the food the most. I really love Japanese food.
Joel: That’s exactly the same for me.
Joel: I’ll miss my yakisoba.
Michele: And good sushi. Udon. I love udon.