July 03, 2006

It's Family, but It's Not Home

I can honestly say I was not very homesick in Japan. As much as shit was hitting the fan all year 'round, I was enjoying my independence and free life more than anything else. As the last few weeks drew I had a lot of mixed feelings about going home, and I still wouldn't say I was homesick - I was more relieved to be leaving my ever-more stressful job more than anything else. But now I'm in Canada, I really do feel homesick. I wanna go home...

..but its still mixed feelings. I'm here to visit family. Family I haven't seen in 10 years (most of them anyway). Due to my childhood and poor memory function, I remember hardly anything before 15 and even the rest is very hazy. I really wanted to see them again, but now I'm here they all seem to expect/want/ask me to stay even longer. It was easier when I had a return ticket back to Japan with a fixed date, I could say I have to leave July 2. Now that I had to get a new ticket, it became really hard to say I still want to leave close to that date (I actually wouldn't mind earlier).

My sister was older when we came last time, so remembers more of people. I don't. And she doesn't seem to understand this. I'm not excited about meeting a lot of these people because they all remember me, but I don't remember anything about them. When you're a young adult, it's a really unnerving experience as far as I feel.

I have extended my stay here an extra week. The masses of cousins, second cousins, great aunts and uncles that I have scattered throughout Ontario has meant that I'm actually not spending a lot of money on either accommodation, transport or food - which really shouldn't be a main decider - but realistically its a factor in how long you can stay in a foreign country. It's starting to feel less intimidating, but I am a bit apprehensive about a wedding I'm now going to for a great uncles wife's sister's daughter's daughter (or something) on the 4th of July in Michigan (for one thing, can I cross the border without hassles?). After that my sister and I will take a short trip to Montreal and then I'll be going home on the 14th of July Ontario time, arriving 16th of July Queensland time, via Vancouver, Hawaii (airport only) and Sydney.


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