Jul 31, 2018

Tales from study abroad : My host family the gaijin collectors

Tales from study abroad : My host family the gaijin collectors photoMy host family was strange. They are what I call gaijin collectors. They love the appeal of foreigners. How cool they are because they aren't Japanese. It was the first time they were taking a student from my study abroad program but I was not their first host student. No instead I was their 26th. And during the year that I spent with them, there were four other students that rotated in and out of their skyrise apartment. Like I said gaijin collectors. When I first arrived, I was greeted with friendly smiles and escorted around. They showed me my room, the living room and told me I would be serving the father his iced coffee in the evenings. I had two host sisters, one was off in university and the other still living with us as well as another host student from Poland. This meant that father mother and daughter all stayed in one room, which I only entered once during the latter half of my second term there. Until that time I just sorta wondered where they were sleeping. The other two bedrooms in the apartment were occupied by myself and the other host student. When she went home, a lovely girl from Thai came. Her time with us was cut short, but the month she was their showed me that something was up with my family. Something my inability to speak Japanese and understand the passive aggressive culture made difficult to see up until that point. It was clear my host family didn't really like me all that much. How did I know? They did everything with our Thai sister but refused to go anywhere or do anything with me. When I put the effort into asking them to go with me to watch a movie, my host mom pulled out the calendar, flipped through it and said they were busy until here, a week after my winter vacation would start and I would be four prefectures away for four months. I took the hint and stopped stressing about pleasing them, but never got over the feeling that they would have prefered I leave so they could get their next foreign kid to take my place. I was literally just a picture on their wall and a face to show their neighbors. they only wanted me there because I was American ie foreign and never spent any time trying to get to know me. I wonder what number they are on now.



American step mom with beautiful Brazilian babies. Raising them in Japan. I'm a crafter too

1 Comment

  • Jackson

    on Aug 5

    That is straight up strange, but thanks for sharing so we could have a good laugh lol. There sure are weirdos anywhere.