Hey guys! How’s it going?
Beth is back to talk about “mingling with” 外国人s!! I know!! I know!! I am one of the aforementioned 外国人s!!
When I was younger(I have been in Japan for MANY years), there weren’t so many of us! Now we seem to be in all areas of Japan!
I understand that it might be hard to jump into the middle of a group of foreigners. OK! So, why not try taking baby steps!
STEP 1: saying “HELLO”
Japanese people in general are considered to be shy! All we need here is one word…one single word!! Try it in Japanese if it helps…most of us(foreigners)DO speak some Japanese! I am American! In my small city, there are foreigners from multiple countries! NOT all speak fluent English, but many speak a little!! “こんにちは！ or HELLO!” plus your best smile…..in no time, you’ll have a lot of あいさつs going back and forth!!
STEP 2: taking a seat
If step 1 is a breeze to you, or you can make it with a little work, let’s try something a little more advanced! Next time you are at a hospital, city office, or even on a train, check for 外国人s! Quite often(really), the seat next to us is open. If it is, it’s your LUCKY day!! Be courageous!! Walk over, say HELLO, then take a seat!!
When someone sits next to me with a friendly smile, they make my day!!
To most foreigners, making Japanese friends is so much fun!! We want to get to know you!!
STEP 3: making friendships
The last, and of course, best step you can take is to actually befriend any foreigners in your community! Most of us look forward to the “hello”s, then maybe a nod or a wave!! Many of us have questions or concerns about living in Japan!
Don’t worry about having perfect English!! Like I already mentioned, not all of us actually speak Eanglish as our native tongue! Mix English, Japanese, and maybe even hand gestures! If you are smiling, any of the above should work! You’ll soon find many foreigners are eager to learn “how to” do things the Japanese way! As a bonus, you can learn about non-Japanese ways!
To wrap things up, I can’t promise that ALL 外国人s will respond positively to you; but even if there is one who doesn’t, don’t give up!!
Easy words and phrases to start a conversation :
*Hi, how are you?
*Welcome to …..(if they are new to your community)!
*Can I help you?
*Do you speak English? Japanese?
*Hello! May I sit here?
Hi! My name is Beth !! I have lived in Japan for a really long time!! I am fluent in both English and Japanese, but with age (hahaha) am finding myself sometimes digging for words in both languages !! I love anything that is not housework!! Teaching (helping others learn) is my favorite activity!?! I hope to make many new friends !! Feel free to drop me a “howdy!
座右の銘は、”God first! People next! Everything else after that!”