Gaijin solidarity

Article published on April 3, 2009
community published
Article published on April 3, 2009
I'm counting the cases when other white people smile at me. In two days (since I started paying attention) I've counted four. A minimal smile, a nod, an examining look, or a combination of all of them happens in stations or streets outside Tokyo. Of course, it wouldn't happen in Akihabara or other areas where there are many Europeans and Americans, or where people really hurry.

Being noticeably different in Japan is sort of pleasant. For one thing, they don't expect me to speak fluent Japanese. Also, I get many compliments for my looks, which usually hardly ever happens in Lithuania. I believe other people experience the same. The status of a "visible foreigner" sort of bonds, I guess. It's easy to guess that most of us have been through similar situations. On the other hand, I feel a bit strange, since I don't know these people and never will. Besides, some of the Japanese around us might have much more in common with me than these foreigners.

I wonder if two Japanese would smile at each other in Lithuania. Possible.