Sunday, October 26, 2008

sayonara -- Japan 1996

Good bye...sayonara....auf wiedersehen.... selamat tinggal....Au Revoir....Adios....

No matter what language you say it in, it feels sad to say the words 'good bye.' Leaving Japan in May 1996 was not easy. I was saying goodbye to precious friends. Familiar places were no longer going to be part of my daily routine. As the 'good bye' day drew closer I would think, "This is the last time..."

I embraced "Goodbyes" all my life,but each time I had to embrace another one I found myself backing away. How can I leave the sights, the sounds, the people, the places and the experiences which make up the place I've been? How do I walk away? Slowly but surely I reach for the "Good bye" hugging it close to my chest. Maybe it will shield me from the pain of leaving. Of course, it never does.

Japan was one of the hardest good byes. Maybe it was difficult to leave because I lived there for seven years. Little by little, I pulled the farewell cloak around me. One last look at the tozai sen, one last taste of the tonkatsu down at the little shop near my house, one last chat with my wonderful friends and one last glance around the wee apartment which housed my family for seven years.

The thing about "good byes", they are always followed by "hellos". I do so love saying hello.


  1. FINALLY......I got the postcard today.....thank U its really so cute....but u mentioned 2nd postcard...does tht mean u sent 2?
    Hmmmm....have to chk it out. well if the 2nd postcard made it here, the 1st postcard must be somewhere closeby. I'll hunt it out:-D.

  2. hehe.....forgot to comment on urself in my excitement:-P.

    Yes goodbye is one of the hardest words to say in any language & worse if its for ever. But then life is full of them hellos & good byes.
    I keep my feelings in & say it(goodbye ie) with the brightest of smiles but breakdown when I later think about it.....especially if I'm all alone:-(.

    p.s - its "alvida" in Hindi!!!

  3. just noticed a mistake in my 2nd comment "hehe.....forgot to comment on ur POST in my excitement:-P."

  4. wonder if you went back there again.

  5. Reflections- is the saying 'better late than never' able to compensate for the fact I'm two years late in responding to your comment. Forgive me- remember I was (and am) a ding dong when it comes to blogging- had not figured out how to have the blog let me know someone commented- now I have figured it out- but that does not help for the past entries!! :)...thanks for giving me the Hindi word for it.

    Haddock- can you believe, with all the places I've been since 1996- I've never been back to Japan? I have been in the Narita airport enroute to here or there- but I've never gone back to visit, my husband was hoping to do so this year- not sure!!


Where do I begin?

(written on March 28th 2018) For someone with so many words...words that just tumble out even when they are not wanted...words that jump h...