Before my trip, if you had asked me off hand where Kanazana was, I wouldn’t be able to answer. Embarking on this journey gave me the opportunity to experience how it was like to be staying in the rustic and peaceful countryside of Kanazawa, Japan. Initially, I was very anxious and worried about having to stay with a family that I had never met before. However, these feelings were soon forgotten when the family welcomed me with warm smiles and open arms. Throughout my stay with the family, I was showered with much warmth and care that it reminded me of my own parents back in Singapore. Being the only child at home, I also experienced the joys of having siblings.
I was very fortunate to work with a wonderful team during this trip. Although my group members had different personalities and cultures, we managed to put aside all our differences and worked together to prepare a farewell performance for our host families.
Dinner with my host family
Visiting local attractions with my group members
This trip has taught me many valuable lessons. One important lesson that I have learned is respect. When I travelled using the public train, I noticed that at the end of the journey, the train conductor would never fail to bow and thank the passengers even though sometimes there were no passengers looking at him. One could easily see how the conductor took pride in his work. I have learned that it is not about the amount of respect you get but the amount of respect you give to those around you that matters the most.
My host family once asked me whether I missed my parents back in Singapore. I found it so difficult to reply because I realized that I would miss my host family when I leave Kanazawa just as much as I missed my parents when I was in Kanazawa.
From the bottom of my heart, I am very grateful to the Kawasaki family and Singapore Polytechnic for supporting this learning journey. I will always embrace the sweet memories and values learnt in my heart. Arigato Gozaimashite!
Written by Haw Chee Yeng
DMLS Current Year 3 Student
Merged into Diploma in Applied Chemistry (DAPC)