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As I mentioned before, I enjoy studying and looking at different buildings in Japan, particularly the old temples and shrines. This is especially why I love living in Kyoto. Recently I do not have as much time to go to temples and shrines (plus, it is also getting very hot and humid) but it is still enjoyable to see some of the older streets and buildings that I can walk by, or see from the train when I travel to different areas for work.
Speaking of travelling, I also love how easy it is to travel to different areas of Japan. In Salt Lake City, there are buses and trains, and the system is still growing, but if you miss a bus or train, you often have to wait 15 or 30 minutes, sometimes even an hour, for the next one. I find that Japan is much more convenient to get around, whether it’s for work or for leisure. Because of this convenience, I love being able to explore different places by myself. Of course, I am still learning Japanese so sometimes it can be difficult to ask for directions if I need them, but usually I don’t need to ask for help. If I do, my Japanese is steadily improving, so that I can even give directions sometimes.
I would say that I am most often in either Kyoto or Osaka. A few people think that the two cities are very far apart, but for me, because of the special rapid JR line, I enjoy going between the two cities. Kyoto is somewhat easier to navigate because of how the blocks are organized, but both cities are fun to explore. I enjoy exploring both by myself, as well as with friends.
Overall, I love that I have more freedom and choices to do things on my days off. I have made many friends in Japan, so if I feel like having company, I am glad that it’s usually easy to find someone to hang out with. Or, if I feel like walking about by myself, I can do so almost any time of the day, although I do have my days where staying in my apartment to study, read books, or work on personal projects like art is the best thing to do in order to relax.