Nishi Shimizu Elementary School: hills, manner, and Nigerian?

Dear diary,

Yesterday I went to Nishi Shimizu Elementary School for Hello World Project. Hello World is a project created by Fukui International Affairs (FIA) and JICA to promote about another countries beside Japan. So, foreigners who live in Fukui is being asked for help explaining about their country to elementary students.

Then, I’ve been pointed by Nakashima-Sensei to be a delegation from Indonesia, presented about Indonesia, especially Indonesia’s important days. Actually, they asked me to explain about the new year in Indonesia, but I said that New Year Eve in Indonesia isn’t that important, because everyone has their own important days related to their religions. So, they asked me about my important day, Idul Fitri. Then in the end, my presentation is about Indonesia and Islam.

I was so nervous yesterday. Because it was my first time having a presentation in full Japanese. Yes, I never did it before. And it turned out to be my longest time speaking in Japanese since I was born. It was about 30 minutes. Thanks to Allah, everything turned out so well, and the children looked so interested about Indonesia.

There are many interesting parts at that time. First, the school was very very far from Fukui. It is at very very rural area. It costed 610 yen for one way trip by bus. The scenery is so beautiful. Many old buildings like a temple, or even a house. The school itself is located at the hills surrounded by many trees. Me like the scenery!!!

And forgetting to bring my camera, I feel so stupid. Huhuhuhuhuuu…

Another interesting part was the children. I’ve been wondering since few days ago, everytime I meet elementary students, they always greet me with “konnichiwa”. I though they are very friendly and not scared with foreigner. Then, yesterday I found the answer. When we walked at the aisle, the teacher always told the students to greet me. Maybe it is a form of a manner that always tought at the elementary school. A form of a respect to someone older than them.

Well, if you think that Japanese young people doesn’t have a respect, than you are wrong. Because since elementary or maybe since kindergarten, they’ve been taught about manner, and they practiced, even out from the school area.

Then the most interesting part: when I walked at the aisle, a boy looked at me and said to his friend: ” Nigeria jin da!” which means I am a Nigerian. Hahahahaa…. Well, I didn’t think it was an insult. Instead I though, maybe a woman wear a hijab indentic with Middle East or Africa. Well, I always look at the bright side, deshou?

Cheers!

Nilna Amelia

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