Monday, August 30, 2010

Won't Miss #226 - "why are you here?"

As I've mentioned before, I have talked to literally thousands of Japanese people due to the types of jobs I have done and the one question that I am thoroughly tired of answering is why I'm here. I get asked this question both in terms of why I came in the first place and why I keep living here after 20 years. One of the things you don't appreciate about living in your home country is that no one ever asks you why you exist where you do. You just live and no one questions your purpose in being wherever you are. Now, I am not saying in any way that the question is unreasonable or that the motivation behind asking it is in any way a bad one. I don't blame people for asking the question, but I really am tired of answering it. It's not only because it's the same question being repeated so often, but also because it frames my life as one of an outsider in this land who has to somehow offer an explanation for continuing my life as I have lead it for quite a long time. It's yet another reminder that I don't belong and that my presence is one that should be questioned.

I'm thoroughly sick of being asked why I came to Japan, and I won't miss being answering this question over and over and over again.