Rare Experience

“Elderly Japanese women
seem to have taken a liking to me. One dark and rainy day, a sweet old lady waved to me and said, ‘Come inside the umbrella or you’ll catch a cold.’ Then another time, while I was staring at the moon by myself to wait for the lunar eclipse, some middle-aged woman approached me and said, Tsuki ga kirei desu ne (the moon is beautiful). We ended up watching the eclipse together and chatting about life.

“Those tiny thoughtful things touch my heart. The second lady even invited me to her house. When they feel like they can trust you, they really welcome you. I love their hospitality. Maybe it’s because I speak Japanese so I don’t really feel any boundaries or wall with them. They respect that you can understand their language and culture.

Being Indonesian in Japan, I feel lucky but it’s also challenging at the same time.

“Good thing I don’t feel any discrimination at the Japanese company I work for. The only downside is I get passed over for assignments overseas or business trips because of visa requirements, whereas a Japanese colleague can go on the fly.

“Fortunately, Japan makes huge investments in Indonesia, which is my territory. It’s always my time to shine wherever there’s an Indonesia-related project. I get to meet government officials and even the Japanese ambassador. It’s a rare experience and privilege to be working here. As a foreigner in Japan, you have a lot of skills that people value—language, your open mind, etc. I think it’s a plus if you live in Japan.”

Italian Park in Shiodome, Tokyo




【翻訳:Junko Kato Asaumi】

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Finding diversity and inclusion. Breaking down barriers one post at a time. Stories and snapshots of foreigners making their way in Japan.

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