Life in Niigata: First day

A year ago today, there were tears in my eyes.

As I bid goodbye to my home in Tokyo, my feelings heavier than the luggage I’m dragging to the nearest train station, I thought of the happy times and the once-in-a-lifetime opportunities this chance to live in Japan gave me. I kept on remembering the carefree days while instructing myself to start to accept that I’ve had so many precious moments here and today is its last. My tears were my goodbyes to the busy streets, trains, food shops and my favorite second-hand toy stop.
Above all I was saddest that I am leaving the friends that I have just met. Along with my sadness, longing, tears and fears, I started to accept.

A year ago today, I faced an entirely different life. From the hustling life in Tokyo, I went north to Niigata, the rice capital of Japan. From buildings to ricefields, yes. That’s how I got a taste of both worlds in a day last year.

A year ago today, I was full of fear. Out of pressure mostly since I wouldn’t be this priveleged, by privellge alone. Of course, I had my duties along with this opportunity and being in Niigata meant things got more serious that time. As I have to work with actual engineering design company whilst studying Japanese language, having that one bottle of sake (Japanese alcohol) for my first night in Niigata was a perfect welcome.

A year ago today, was my first day in Niigata. A year ago today, I was afraid. I was doubtful, I wanted to stay amd live with my friends in Tokyo.
But why am I writing this?
Because unknowingly, a year ago today, I reached home.

A year I will never forget.
A year I wished I could experience again.

Movie Review: Uchiage hanabi, shita kara miru ka? Yoko kara miru ka?

English title: Fireworks, Should We See It from the Side or the Bottom?

I would like to believe that at least some would agree that this movie gave Bakemonogatari vibes. And Google search images lead me to be believe that we are not few. Watching Nazuna (female lead) all with her dark purple hair and indifferent facial expression is as if I am watching Senjougahara, only tamer.

If one is a fan of Bakemonogatari, it can’t be helped but see the anime within the characters’ eye expression, reactions, movements and on some sceneries of this movie. Being a fan myself, I wasn’t sure if it is a plus since I can’t help but compare to the point that I was predicting each character’s actions based on their counterpart in Bakemonogatari which the resemblance lead me to assume. Thankfully though, most of my assumptions were wrong so the element of surprise is still there.

However, the animation is not everything that makes this movie. While it highly resembles the said anime series, the story is far different. Hence, I’m going to stop mentioning Bakemonogatari at this part. You’re welcome.

Summer Japan GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

P.S. to this animation part though, I loved how they (creators) took the uncommon path when it comes to height difference. Compared to other anime where the guy is taller than or of the same height as the girl, here, Norimichi (male lead) is a bit shorter than Nazuna which I find cute.

Now to the storyline.

The story starts in a dreamlike underwater-ish scene. Same like Kimi no Nawa’s kuchikamizake moment where Taki and Mitsuha switched places again after a long time. Enticing and wonderful if I may say. It will then revolve around the life of normal highschoolers and their not-so normal encounters.

The flow becomes a little boring at some parts especially because it involves abstract scenes wherein viewers will be left imagining whether the scene is reality or something else. That wondering part is what makes the story more interesting though. Along with the mystery as to how the characters find out whether fireworks are round or flat and where should it be best viewed and the adventures they face along the way.

A story of taking chances, Fireworks is not the typical slice of life movie. In my case, it required concentration and deeper comprehension of some scenes even long after they’ve been shown. Or maybe I was just that shallow? Nevertheless, it is worth a watch and the realization of what the movie really wants to say is worth writing a review on the spot. ^_^

There are not so many songs in this movie when I wished there was but the ending song is nice.