Friday, April 20th 2018

Why I have decided to go to Japan?

Haruki Murakami

why Japan? many years a friend of mine gave me a book to read. It was a book of unknown to me at that time Japanese writer Haruki Murakami.

It was his A Wild Sheep Chase. Then I read Dance Dance Dance, and many others. Basically everything translated into Russian at that time. And while reading my interest in this country was growing and growing.

Wild Sheep Chase

I was imagining the places described in the book – houses, streets, restaurants. One of the places I wanted to visit was Hokkaido. On one hand so far away, on the other hand so close to Russia, and Vladivostok, where my mom was born. I don’t know why I was making this connection.

By summer 2010 I had not read any of his books for long long time.  A friend of mine told me that there is a new book called 1Q84. I looked it up on Internet but it was not translated into Russian yet.

And then I came across this big stand with his book in a book store in Tokyo. I picked up one book and opened it, only Japanese characters. So I guess I have to wait.

After Murakami I read The Golden Temple by Yukio Mishima.  Mishima was nominated three times for Nobel prize and is remembered for his ritual suicide by seppuku after a failed coup d’état.

The temple mentioned in the book is one of the main temples of Kyoto. I read the book twice. I imagined the temple and Kyoto itself many times while reading. Of course, I wanted to visit this city also famous for its temples and Zen gardens.

Later on I decided that I will go to Japan. I did not know when or how but I started learning Japanese. I have not learnt a lot, i am not fluent. But those 20 phrases helped me quite a lot, especially in places where there are no tourists at all.

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4 Comments on “Why I have decided to go to Japan?”

  1. you did an awesome job! the blog looks great. and a belated congratulations!

    1. Thank you, Isabela!

  2. Hi Alex, I’m Tatsuro.
    It’s interesting for me that Murakami started key points on your travel to Japan.
    In Japan, Murakami is one of the best known a novelist, and known a excellent Japanese-English translator.

    And knowing Yukio Mishima is cool.
    Many Japanese were greatly shocked Mishima suicide “seppuku”.

    1. Thank you, Tatsuro! Yes, Mishima was a great person and pity he left this life like that.

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