Well it’s been almost 4 months now since I came to Tsuyama. Life here has definitely been interesting, compared to my previous Tokyo experience. At times I do miss the hum of frequent trains, and the sparkling city lights of Shibuya, but I find myself enjoying the quiet here. I can relax and take time to explore my surroundings.
Tsuyama is very similar to the town I grew up in; a town with its own personal fame and history with friendly locals and their usual hangouts. It’s easy to relax on the weekends, and meet with friends. I also enjoy all of the space! When I lived in Tokyo, it was the thing I missed the most. Wide, open spaces! As you know, Texas is full of wide open space, even in the city. I was so happy to see all of the rolling countryside and rice fields. My hometown has a local farming community too. On the weekends you can buy fresh eggs and milk. I found myself tracking down the local products and was pleased to find local Tsuyama milk and eggs. I try to cycle down to the store once a week to stock my fridge. I have to say the milk is very delicious! And it makes my homemade tortillas taste even better.
I have especially enjoyed the local festivals. I have never experienced a Japanese autumn festival before. It was a lot of fun to watch everyone pulling the danjiri. I even got to wave hello to some of my students as they went by. The autumn is very beautiful here. I have been starting a collection of Japanese maple leaves. It is quite a marvel to me. I can’t wait until the spring to see the famous Kakuzan cherry blossoms.
Tsuyama has just the right amount of quiet nature and bustling city about it. It suits me quite well I think. I want to say thank you to everyone for welcoming me into your community. I am pleased to say, Tsuyama is a home away from home.