First days in Japan after 1 year of learning japanese

Hello everyone,
I did it, I made my way to Japan after more than a year of japanese learning.:tada::confetti_ball::balloon::jp::jp:
Actually I started learning japanese on July 2017 with no previous experience on the language or any conscious knowledge of language learning. My mother language Spanish and I could say I learnt English from experience and massive exposure as a kid… but no knowledge at all than could serve me as basis for japanese.

I must say I’ve been extremely regular with my japanese studies so far, 2-3 hours a day without skipping more than 4-5 days this last year (which I don’t know if it is a good or bad thing to be honest); grammar, kanji and vocab initially, later more like reading, vocab, watching shows, and kanji (in that order of preference).

So far it’s my 3rd day in Japan. I’ve been able to ride the correct trains, read the signs that warn me on not doing silly things ( like riding that 女性専用車 / girls only wagon on the train: though to be fair it’s a pink sign translated to English as well; which apparently didn’t prevent some guy entering the wagon to the amuse of people in the facing platform) and for the most part been able to tell what kind of shops and restaurants is the one facing me (guided by the signboards). As for talking… well… lets say I can ask simple questions and help myself to get products and indications for the most part, but sudden or unexpected phrases really put my out of my comfort zone (and the rest of the conversation turns into an audible blob with the word お客さま been the one I’m most likely to pick)

The level of things you hear on the street as well as the written information happens so quickly that it takes a really clear mind to process all at a constant rate; by the end of the day I’m much less prone to get anything happening around if I had to depend on writing or listening alone.

Having said this, I was watching this video today about immersion and making your way through comprehensible input. It feels so relatable right now… learning through the struggle of wanting to understand the thing you have right in front of you … aided by whatever means.

Anyway, I’ll probably post a couple of times while traveling around Japan, today in Osaka, seems so much quieter in comparison to Tokyo…. My jet lag seems to be over so I’m ready for the upcoming weeks. :muscle::muscle:


I managed that on my trip in December - think I dashed down the stairs and leapt on the train just before it left, but it took me about two stops before I noticed I was sharing the car only with women. I bowed in apology and hastily departed.

Yeah, I feel that. I would happily have entire conversations in Japanese, only to get completely derailed by an unfamiliar word. I don’t think I ever once understood anyone asking me where I came from either, which ought to be a simple question.

If お客さま is appearing in a sentence, you could be dealing with keigo, which is a whole different kettle of fish.

Show us slides of your vacation? :slightly_smiling_face:


That is awesome, I feel so excited for you! How long will you be there?


The women only car is only from 7am to 9am to prevent groping in the extremely crowded morning rush hour. Anytime outside of these hours it’s just another regular car.


@Ncastaneda Yeah, to me Osaka seemed to have a entirely different vibe from all other cities I have visited. I liked it a lot.

Haven’t done much with the camera but…

Yesterday at Tokyo’s Yoyogi Park

Today near Namba in Osaka

this was while waiting my takoyakis been made while playing the most catchy takoyakis song I’ve heard (though I had never heard a takoyaki song before :sweat_smile: )

Oh, yeah, totally. Most of this conversations happen when buying something… so, I was extra aware on how to order something, say that I didn’t have a point card too (happened before in some overseas japanese store) … but I wasn’t prepared for the " would you like it served hot or cold" question :stuck_out_tongue_closed_eyes: … that totally stressed my language balance during day 1 :sweat_smile:

Actually I’ve just checked, and it doesn’t put any time reference on the sticker on the windows of the train… so I would guess It causes a fair amount of unnecessarily ashamed foreigners that get caught in that situation :laughing:

Oh, I’m getting the same impression… such a lively vibe for a sunday night… and oh… those Izakayas and little streets… I’m guessing already where I’ll be spending my nights …:smirk:

three weeks!! I’ve managed to set plans for one week going back to Tokyo and nearby places with some friends, but both the first and the last week it’s mainly improvising and going with the flow… I’ve bought the 3 week JR pass, so that opens a lot of possibilities as to where to go… so far I’m considering Hokkaido as my last week plan… but suggestions are more than welcomed :hugs:


thanks for the video.
Have a nice trip.

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Awesome post. Hopefully, I will try the same experience within the next couple of years (excited emoji).

Have fun and share more media from the trip ^^

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Same happened to me once… :see_no_evil: Nobody said anything but I felt quite uncomfortable when I realized it.
The times of woman-only trains vary. In Tokyo, if I remember correctly, it’s only during rush hour. In Kansai, there are lines that have women-only cars all day long.

I love Osaka so much. People seem much more open to interact with strangers, compared to Tokyo. The food is incredible!!! And the nightlife in Namba - especially Nishi-Shinsaibashi - is a hidden gem.

Enjoy your trip! I’ve lived in Kansai for more than a year so I really get 里心 when thinking about it :smile:

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Congratulations dude. :slightly_smiling_face:

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congrats man. I too plan to visit japan withing two years; right now, i am gathering up money for the trip.

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Hope you have fun for the remainder of your trip. Sounds exciting! I’m booked for my first visit to Japan in November. I will also be going exactly one year after I first started learning Japanese. I feel like I’ve got some idea of what to expect now :blush:

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Hah, that one got me too. I was ordering tsukemen in December, I wasn’t aware cold was even going to be an option.

Yamadera in Yamagata Prefecture. Koyasan. Kyoto and Nara. I could probably suggest stuff all day. :stuck_out_tongue:

Yeah. Think there’s a combination of being lenient with the baka gaijin, and not wanting to be rude, but yeah.

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Depends on the line. Where I live they tend to be all day.

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You got a lot of gropers in your area? :rofl:

Isn’t it just simpler that way? No need for people to have to pay attention to the time.

But considering it doesn’t even get that crowded during rush hour on my local line, I’m gonna say, no, the number of gropers is not related to the allocation of women’s cars.

That way it’s more clear which women want to be groped, because they have to go to a different car. (Joke! It’s just a joke, I promise.)

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Sounds like fun. Let us know how you get on as the trip progresses.

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Wow, this is so exciting! I can feel the sense of energy and discovery from across the web. :zap:

And this photo! It’s SO gorgeous! :heart_eyes::heart_eyes_cat::durtle_love:

I’m so excited for you. Three weeks is awesome, I hope you have a lot of fun! Post more cool scenery shots! :camera_flash:

Going to Japan is one of my goals, too! But I want to get better at the language before I attempt to mosey on over there. Someday! :hatching_chick:

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