Back to ‘Ancient’ Japan – The Act of Letting Go…
This short post was inspired by my good friend Farnoosh Brock. She was enjoying a vacation on the relaxing island of Bali, and was really wondering if she should keep her weekly routine of posting on her blog. Or should she just let go of her routines and let her embrace by the beautiful culture and nature of this Indonesian island?
Just two months earlier I myself visited Bali, so I exactly know where her struggles came from. But it made me think back to my stay in Japan in 1996. Talking about letting go…
In 1996 I left my family and my future wife and traveled to a country with an 8-hour time difference. Internet was not available, I did not have a mobile phone.
This really forced me to do it all on my own. No sharing of experiences, no online network to ask questions. It was me and my Japanese friends. I had a planned phone call back home once a week (Sunday 8pm Japan-time) and I hand wrote a weekly letter. I mean, they had to know I was doing o.k. at the least!
Now I ask myself, did this enhance the experience of spending time in Japan? Did it create an enriched memory of those months? I alone figuring it all out, I alone soaking up all that happened, all that I felt. I guess in a sense it did.
I was working on my comprehension of the Japanese culture and its people, not distracted by the need to communicate it immediately. I could give my full attention to what was happening around and with me. Today I would have posted everything on Twitter or Facebook the minute it happened. And immediately look for another opportunity to post.
With a big smile I look back at my experiences in ‘ancient’ Japan with no internet and no mobile phones. If you have the chance of immersing yourself in a totally different culture or environment (even for a couple of days), leave online network posting to a minimum. Enjoy it, live it and come back enriched with new inspiration and life lessons.