Posted on: July 25/08

I had thought that this next post of the 日本に行くぞ~ series would announce my acceptance into JET. But nope, I have given up hope. 😦

Let’s backtrack. A month and a bit ago, I received a letter from the Consulate General of Japan. Mom told me about it on the phone while I was at work, so I was super excited, expecting to be THE letter. I rushed home to open it…the first words that met my eyes: “Invitation to the JET Preparation Seminar”. I scanned through the first page, and the next, and the next, hoping for the good news to pop up any time.

It never came.

The whole letter package was just to inform me of this seminar, a reception , and to promote those courses to help you learn Japanese and how to teach English. The reception was to “celebrate you participation in the JET programme”. OK, that obviously excludes me. And I don’t have much interest in those courses. The Preparation Seminar though, seemed useful. The topics were as follow:

  • Now to Tokyo – What to prepare
  • Your First Month In Japan – What to expect
  • Money and Taxes – self explanatory
  • Culture Shock – How to deal with it
  • Living in Japan Workshop
  • Working in Japan Workshop
  • General Q&A

After checking that Alternate JETs can participate in this, I registered. I figured, even if JET doesn’t accept me, this should still be helpful when I go to Japan. Because i will go, one way or another. 😀

So then a month ago, I went to this Preparation Seminar. It was quite a formal work conference with everyone dressed in very proper business attire. The agenda for the day (9:40-5:00) was laid out for us; it was a rigorous schedule with set break times in between.

After hearing a speech, we played a BINGO ice-breaker game. It was there that I found out there were other Alternate JETS there! In fact, there were about 5 of us out of ~35 people there. I was encouraged when some ex- and current JETs told me that I’ll probably get in. “Just keep waiting! Even start packing your bags!” I was hopeful! …but not quite to the point of actually packing my bags already.

The seminars were more well done than I had expected! The speakers were all animated people, very funny and created a relaxing mood while being informative at the same time. For example, I learned that maple cookies and ketchup chips make good omiyage to bring there. I also learned that instead of signatures, the Japanese people use a stamp, called “inkan”, for everything. And also of course, important things like getting a “gaijin” card (foreigner’s card) and how to obtain an International Drivers Permit.

The 2 workshops were a little different. Instead of speakers presenting to us, we were split up into groups of ~10 to discuss possible sticky situations that may arise. These situations were the worse case scenarios, which hopefully doesn’t happen too often, but I did manage to learn from them. The main message was to make sure things are communicated properly to avoid misunderstandings, and one way to do that was to get everything confirmed in writing. Yep, definitely a good lesson for me.

So if you ever get a chance to attend a JET Preparation Seminar, I strongly suggest that you do! It was beneficial, no doubt!~


Alternate JETs usually get bumped up to short-listed JETs by mid July via a phone call. It’s now 1 week passed that, and I have already given up hoping to be contacted by JET. 😦

Therefore, I have moved onto my 2nd option from long ago: Missions with OMF.

A week ago, I submitted my preliminary form, and have already been contacted by them. In fact, just yesterday, I met up with the Pacific Region Coordinator, Phoebe, and Pat, a missionary who has served in Japan for many years. It was a causal chat, discussing some of my interests in ministry, some of the needs of Japan, and some things I will need to consider and pray hard about. Although I don’ t know what the next step is, or if they will even take me, God is definitely in control and leading me somewhere. Where He shuts one door, He will open another. I’m excited to see what He has planned for me; it probably will be so much better than I can ever imagine! 😀


3 Responses to "日本に行くぞ~6"

ohhh u didn’t got an answer yet from them? ohh.
I agree with you “Where He shuts one door, He will open another” u defenetly will make it. gambate. I’m praying for you ^^

I hope you’re doing alright…haven’t talked to you in a long time. ^^ Take care and hope something works out for you as far as living in Japan!
Changed my blog URL to natsu-no-kaze.blogspot.com I dunno if I told you before. ^^

sarah! i didn’t know that ur still keeping up with the japanese culture. kudos to u.

i’m at the UK now, and one of the reasons i’m rather excited right now is ‘cuz i just discovered wordpress not more than a month ago. It’s something to celebrate i think to find a friend using the same blogging site. = )

mine’s at http://travelfox.wordpress.com

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