A new journey…

Welcome to my blog!

I’m pretty excited to start this. I’ve been wanting to start a blog for a while now, but I’ve hardly had a chance to sit down and open up my laptop since arriving here in Japan.

For those who don’t know who I am my name is Tim, and I’m from Northern England. I’m currently working as an English language teacher in Tochigi, a prefecture in the Northern Kanto region of Japan. I’ve been in Japan for just over a month now and plan on staying here until March next year.

It’s hard to believe that just a few months ago I was in England feeling very lost and trapped in what seemed like a passionless routine. Despite years of studying hard in order to get my qualifications, I still struggled to find any work in the UK. Instead I was helping my parents at our family owned takeaway. My parents are from Hong Kong and migrated to England over 40 years ago. They are hardworkers, and owning a takeaway is really not that easy. Not only does it involve long hours, it is also very physically demanding. That’s why I hold so much respect for my parents. I basically grew up in the takeaway, and I have been working there since the age of around 16. As much as I respect the business, I knew that it was not something I wanted to do for the rest of my life. I always wanted to travel and be adventurous. With the teacher’s job market being so tough in the UK, it only made sense for me to teach abroad. However, there was always something inside me stopping me from pursuing these dreams. It took a lot of courage to step up and apply for Japan, and I have truly learned that the biggest step in achieving your goals is to first find the courage to step out of your comfort zone. This step has taken me to the other side of the world, and I am now in a country I have always dreamed of visiting and doing a job that I love.

My time in Japan so far has been pretty hectic. After some intense training (10 hour days) in Narita, moving and settling into my apartment and even more intense training with the Board of Education, I have finally started working at my assigned elementary school. Kids are great! And it’s nice to have students run up to you and say ‘Hello Tim Sensei!’ followed by a high five. I already seem to have made a group of friends who wait for me to come out of the staff room every break so I can play baseball with them. It’s these tiny things which make me realise how great it is to be a teacher.

I’m excited to see what this journey has to offer. I’ll be sure to post my experiences of working and travelling in Japan when I can. That’s it for my first post! I’m ready to head to bed. Thanks for reading!

Oyasuminasai!

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Ohtawara, Tochigi
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