The other day I went a Japanese Style BBQ with the tennis club in my city. I joined them when I first came here because I wanted to make friends and get to know people as soon as I could. Well I like tennis too, but mainly I just wanted to make friends.
I hadn’t seen many of them in a long time because they don’t play during the winter, so I was feeling a little anxious. I knew I was going to be in a completely Japanese only environment and I was going to have to speak a lot of Japanese. I have a lot more confidence with Japanese these days, but I hold myself to high standards. I don’t want to just respond to people, I want to be starting up, pushing forward, and making conversations fun. It’s because of that I get a little stressed. Well that and I hadn’t seen most of these people in a long time.
Things turned out great. I got to speak to a lot of old friends and got to become a lot closer with many thanks to that night. I think my Japanese had gotten a lot better (since half a year ago when I saw most of them last) because everyone seemed to be a little surprised. This goes without saying but I was happy about that haha. Actually I surprised myself how much I spoke.
Japanese BBQs are great places for dinner parties like this. If you have never been or seen one let me explain how they work. They are very different from a western BBQ. BTW the picture I used is from a different BBQ I went to, not the one I am talking about now. The one I am talking about now was inside of a restaurant which are very common in Japan.
Usually there is a big table with grills built into the middle. These types of places usually with have a buffet style menu where you can order as much meat or various other foods as you want for about 1-2 hours. They will have many different kinds of meat cuts and meats in general to choose from. Once you order it they will bring them out on plates that you and friends will then grill yourself. It’s a great environment to sit around and talk while you are grilling up some meat. Usually there are plenty of sauces to choose from as well. Things like lemon, onion, or soy sauce variants. Sometimes it is all you can drink as well. That includes things like alcohol and soda. I don’t really care for drinking too much though so that doesn’t amuse me too much. Regardless it is great fun and the food is always delicious. I really recommend people to try that type of dinner at least once if they come here.
Since I live in Japan I feel it’s really special for me to get to do things like this. I like getting to see the real sides of Japan. This is something that naturally happens and I just got the chance to take a part of it. It’s not something set up purely for someone visiting the country. I think it’s important to get to do these kinds of real experiences.
I also got to talk with some new people, some who were quite older and had a different view of life than I. While I disagreed with a decent amount of what one person was telling me, it is still very interesting to hear about how someone else thinks. Especially one raised and has lived their whole life in a different country and culture from my own. It also makes me appreciate my family and the upbringing they gave me more. It makes me see how differently people see the world even when at that very moment their physical view and environment is the same. Life is interesting for sure; I want to live it to the fullest. Peace.