1.     Why did you decide to come to Japan?

       ( 日本に来ることに決めた理由は? )

Jacob :  In 2001 (and again in 2005) I had the opportunity to visit uji, and upon arrival immediately found an interest in Japanese language and culture, and in particular Japanese people. However, under these circumstances my visits were brief to the point of being cursory, and I received a lot of special treatment. I want to experience the everyday lives of Japanese people, which I have finally managed to do; moreover, I hope I may drastically increase my embarrassingly poor Japanese language skills during my stay.      

( 20012005年に宇治を訪問する機会があり、日本の言語や文化、人々に非常に興味を持ち、日本の日常生活を体験したいと思い来日しました。 )

Kaitlynn : I decided to come to Japan because of the teaching position available through the sister city relationship.  I thought this would be a fantastic opportunity to learn about a new country and culture I really knew very little about, And it has definitely exceeded my expectations.

       ( 姉妹都市の関係で英語を教える仕事があり、自分がほとんど知らない新しい国を知る良い機会だと思って。 )

Kate   :  I am very interested in Japanese culture and art, and studied it in university before I came here.  I thought Japan would be a very unique, interesting and exciting place to live!  Also, I really like children and I want to be a teacher in Canada in the future, so I thought that I would really enjoy working as an English teacher for elementary and junior high school students in Japan. 

( 日本の文化や芸術に興味があり、大学でも学んできました。将来、カナダで教師になりたいということもあり、日本で英語を教えるのも楽しいかなと思い来日しました。 )

2.  What is the difference of the image of Japan,  before you came and now?

    ( 日本に来る前と今では、日本のイメージで違いますか? )

Jacob : Before my first visit, I honestly knew next to nothing about Japan, so I had no preconceptions to go off. This was probably a good thing; it may have spared me an adverse bias.

      ( 何も知らないで来たので。それが良かったのかも。)

Kaitlynn : Before I came to Japan I thought that it was going to be a very efficient country, but as soon as I arrived I learned that it is one that is full of paperwork.  I couldn’t believe the time it took to get the simplest task completed…for example Getting internet.  We had to send away papers to a company to get more papers sent back to fill out in order to send those exact papers back to get someone to install a modem, seems crazy to me at times.  Also I had different expectations for the sushi, there aren't any California rolls here. Ha-ha  joking I knew that there wouldn't be.  But now after living in Japan for about 8 months,  I realize because something is done differently does not mean it is wrong and I feel that I am at an advantage because I can pick and choice aspects of both countries to live by.

      ( 効率的な国かな、と思っていたけど、日本は文書業務が非常に多い。インターネットをつなぐのにも、書類を何度も送ったり送り返したり。それに、お寿司もカリフォルニアロールが無かったし。冗談だけどね。でも、日本に住んで8ヶ月経って、違うやり方は間違ったやり方じゃないって実感しています。それに、両方の国のやり方や見方を選べるから、良かったと思います。 )

Kate  :   Despite the fact that I studied about Japan in university, I still didn't really know what to expect! Japan is so far away that people in Canada don't have a very good idea of what it is like, except for Tokyo and anime!  So, it has been a very new and exciting experience for me coming here!  I am really enjoying living in Japan, learning more about Japanese history and culture, visiting Japanese cities, temples and the beautiful countryside, and getting to know many wonderful Japanese people.  I am surprised by how well people speak English here, and it is very nice the way people go out of their way to be welcoming and friendly to confused foreigners like myself!

( 日本はやっぱり遠い国。東京とアニメ以外は、カナダの人には遠い国すぎてイメージがわきにくいです。 だから、日本での滞在はとても目新しい刺激のある経験になっています。これからもっとたくさんの日本の事を知りたいと思っています。日本の方は英語がとっても上手で、外国人に本当に親切だなあと驚いています。)

3.     Is there any Japanese culture or manner which is really hard to understand for you?

( 日本文化や行儀作法で、理解しがたいことは? )

Jacob : Yes! Politeness levels in speech really throw me off. In formal setting I'm often not quite sure which honorific to use or how I can be in my verb forms. I sometimes come off as being rigid and overly formal, but more often I accidentally fall into a more conversational rhythm and end up being too rude. I used "ore" with my kouchousensei once. Luckily he either didn’t notice or chose to pretend he hadn’t.

       ( 話す相手によって、礼儀正しく言葉を変えるのは混乱します。なので、丁寧すぎたり失礼になってしまったり。一度、校長先生に、『俺』って言ってしまいました。)

Kaitlynn :Not really, I mean I expected that there was going to be cultural things that I didn't understand, and therefore nothing really sticks out... I suppose the whole idea about relationships is a bit strange.  I mean I come from a country where most husbands and wives share in each others lives both personally and professionally.  It seems strange to go to enkai's (Christmas parties etc) and not invite along significant others.  No body really talks about their partners in the work place, and that is something I didn't expect.

       ( 今まで知らなかった文化だろうと思っていたので、特にないかな。でも、思っていなかったことは、夫婦の考え方がちょっと違います。カナダではほとんどの夫婦がお互いの友だちや仕事関係も分かち合います。日本では宴会やクリスマスパーティーに夫婦で参加しないし、仕事場では配偶者のことを話さないですね。) 

Kate    Japanese culture is very different from Canadian culture, and even though I want to leaas much about Japan as I can, there is still so much that I don't understand!  I am often confused by people bowing and exchanging formalities, especially in the workplace, because we don't do that in Canada.  Also, the junior high school students are always doing funny things I don't understand!

( 特に仕事場で、形式的にお辞儀をし合うのは、混乱します。カナダではしないですから。それと、中学生はいつも理解不能なおもしろいことをしています。)

4.What is your dream?

      ( 夢は何ですか? )

Jacob : Up to this point my dream was actually to live in Japan as a high school ryuugakusei; now I suppose it is to return to Japan and live here long-term, hopefully in the near future.

      ( 今のところ、近い将来、日本で長く滞在したいです。)

Kaitlynn : I would like to one day work in a humanitarian field, with the United Nations or some other NGO.  I am also  considering going to Law School when I return back to Canada.

       ( いつか人道主義的な、国際連合やNGOで働きたい。カナダに帰ったら、法律学校に行くことも考えています。 )

 Kate   : My dream is to travel the world!  Also, I am going back to university in Canada next winter to do a Masters in English Literature, and then I want to be a university professor.

( 世界を旅したいです。それに、カナダの大学に戻って英語文学の修士の勉強をし、教授になりたいです。 )

5.Do you have any message to Uji International Friendship Club members?

      ( 宇治国際交流クラブのメンバーにメッセージを )
 Kaitlynn :I would like to thank the Uji International Friendship Club Members for all their hard work, they
                are relentless in their efforts to educate the people of Uji about Global issues and our sister               city...Without people like you I am afraid these cross cultural experiences would be lost.  I think it is so               important to continue to strengthen these global relationships so that each community can grow and                    learn from each other.

      ( 宇治国際交流クラブのメンバーの努力や取り組みのおかげで、このような文化交流の経験ができていると思い感謝しています。係わり合いをさらに強め、続けていくことが大切だと思いますし、そうすれば、お互いの市がさらに学びあって成長できると思います。)

Kate    :I want to say, thank you so much for how welcoming, friendly and helpful you have been ever since I arrived in Japan!  It is very difficult at first moving to a different country, and the Uji International Friendship Club members made my transition to life in Japan much easier. Thank you for all the fun times, and ongoing friendship and support throughout my year in Japan !

( 日本に来てからずっと親切に助けになってくれて、ありがとうございます。違う国で生活を始めるのは難しいけど、宇治国際交流クラブのメンバーのおかげで、日本での生活へスムーズに変われました。楽しい時間や交流、日本での1年をサポートしてくださりありがとうございます。)



現在、カムループスから3人のAETが 宇治市の小中学校で活躍しています。今回はそのうちのKaitlynn(写真右)とKate(写真左)にインタビューしました!