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Here are some answers to some Frequently Asked Questions:

Q:What brought you to Japan?

A:Adventure and language. I love traveling and have never been to Asia. I backpacked around Europe for a month, then spent 4 months in Spain studying at the University of Salamanca. It was a wonderful experience. I hope to be able to go again. I've also been to Brazil. I stayed one month, but I was having such a great time that it seemed to short. In total, I've been to 13 countries. But Japan and Asia was a mystery to me. I wanted to go somewhere where I could get away from American culture and Western culture. I also wanted to go to a place where I didn't know the language. I speak Spanish and Portuguese nearly fluently and at the time of my travels, quite a lot of German. And because French, Italian, Spanish, and Portugueseare Romance languages derived from Latin, I have very little problems understanding French and Italian. So it wasn't very difficult to get around in those countries. Japanese on the other hand is completely different from European languages. I wanted a linguistical challenge and decided to go "total submersion" with the language. So, here I am. The funny thing is that I only planned on staying for one, maybe two years, then go on to another country. Five years later, I'm still here. I'm not ready to go anywhere else. There are still so many things I want to do in Japan.

Q:What do you like most about Japan?

A:Difficult question.Too many things to list. The fact that I learn something new everyday is a great feeling. Whether it is a new word in Japanese, or a new cultural experience, new food, new friend, new place to go. Things like that. I also find Japanese history fascinating. I especially like the Sengoku jidai and the Tokugawa jidai. I study a martial art that was developed around those time periods. But on a more modern sense, the combination of trains and izakayas.You can go out drinking with your friends and never have to worry about driving home. Unfortunately, I haven't been able to go out as often as I'd like. Oh well.

Q:What do you dislike about Japan?

A:Summer heat and humidity. Crowded trains. Bank machines (ATMs) that are not open 24 hours a day. People who stand in the doorways of trains blocking people getting on and off. Japanese people's stereotypes of Americans and foreigners in general - I think they are really small-minded. Natto.

Q:If you could take back one thing back from Japan to your country, what would it be?

A:Oshibori. Those little hand towels that restaurants give you to wipe your hands with before you eat are a great idea! In winter they are always nice and hot to warm you up and make you feel clean. And in summer they are cool and refreshing. Although I know you're not supposed to, I always wipe my face too. If I were to open a restaurant in America, I would have oshibori!

Q:What do you like to do on your days off?  Visit my Hobbies and Interests page too!

A:Many things. Mostly I practice Yagyu Shingan ryu and Yagyu Shinkage ryu. It's an old style Japanese martial art. A bujustu or a kobudo. It's a lot of fun and a challenge. I also like to use my computer to do many things. I also like to go out and have fun with my wife. We like to go to movies and restaurants. We also like to visit friends.

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