Should I Stay or Should I Go?

I’ve been here almost for three months. Still no trace of the phantom homesickness. Drat the thing why don’t I get homesick?

Three months. I have no idea if I want to recontract or not. A quarter of a year was what my Grandma said the other weekend. An eighth of the time I will spend here if I do recontract. I don’t know what I want to do, I have until the beginning of February to decide so it’s not like I have to make my mind up right now and at least I’ll get to talk it over face to face with the Jellicle Cat before I sign the papers. I’m fairly sure that somewhere in this head of mine is the thought that last time I did a long distance relationship it didn’t work out and that was only Lancaster to London not even Lancaster to Japan. Come to think of it that was my last relationship before this one…

I would quite like to stay in some ways, I like it here and theres so much of Asia to see, so many places I could go Nesuphyn C, Mixed Bag and I are tentatively planning a trip to Vietnam (Nesuphyn speaks Vietnamese and Mixed Bag speaks French which I can get by in). Theres so much of Japan to visit and so much of the culture to experience…but I do miss the Jellicle.

When I was coming here I was worried about the whole teaching career thing and not being able to get a job back in the UK if I stopped out here for more than a year…to be honest I don’t care now. To some extent the teaching career can go take a running jump and after reading e-TES for a bit I’m fairly sure however long I stay out here I can get a job in an English School somewhere. Even if it ends up being teaching English as an additional language.

Don’t get me wrong, I love teaching, out here without so much of the crowd control element it’s great… its just that I like tutoring better and I like writing better than either of them, which would be nice if it eventually pays. I am going to send something off this year; be the first time in about two years that its something which isn’t damn poetry.

I don’t know. I do want to stay. I wish I could ask someones advice on this. It has me wishing I’d actually met my Granddad (my Dad’s dad) he’s the only other person I know in the family who had a severe case of wanderlust. I admit that technically I have met him but you don’t remember much from being 6 months old. It feels like everyone I would ever have asked advice from is dead. I’m fairly sure my Grandma would have said something along the lines of go for it, you only live once. And my Uncle Arthur? I don’t know. He would have probably had a quote that fitted dead on though.

Everyone else I know seems to think I’m mad for leaving Britain or even for leaving Lancaster. I like the place I’m not like Lexie and thoroughly fed up with it but the idea of staying anywhere for very long appalls me. With the Jellicle as a boyfriend though that does necessitate having some sort of base, he doesn’t like to travel very much. So on the plus side thats not bad.

Someone once asked me if I’d like someone come travel the world with me, at the time I half wondered if they were offering and didn’t quite know how to say that in theory it was a fantastic idea but ‘I need my space’. It sounds so wrong to say that you need space when the space you need is about half a world a way. It’s not that I don’t like my friends, its just that any closer than arms length for a proplonged period of time leaves me jittery. I want to stay true, but I don’t want to be trapped here into this routine of working and writing and all the rest of it. Two years is hardly a routine…well sort of hardly. I want to go back to my Jellicle Cat and actually spend some elongated time in his company. I can always travel again. But this travel opportunity doesn’t come twice in lifetime and is probably the cushiest deal I’ll get with this little experience.

I don’t know; stay here for another year in my lovely little flat tripping across Japan in my threeday weekends with barely any holidays but a very easy work week (at least in comparison to last year!) or go back to England and see what job I can get for a year, probably not in Lancaster and probably only seeing the said Cat at weekends. Or get whatever job is open to me in Lancaster, do some freebie teaching to keep my experience levels up and spend the year with the Cat until the perfect job is open to me and keep on trying with those manuscripts?

I am fairly sure I know what my Grandma would have said and come to think about it probably what my living Grandma would say too. Which is: you only live once. Now my Mum aptly demonstrated that one in college but for wholely different reasons; so what do I do? Do I stay here an experience the delights of Nihon for two years rather than one, or do I go home to spend every minute with the Cat that I possibly can?

3 thoughts on “Should I Stay or Should I Go?

  1. See, what you need to do is send me a large bribe and say, enough cash to buy a very large cardboard box and a small fortune in postage stamps. And some ether.

    Problem solved.

  2. Hey, I don’t think you’re mad for going abroad. No, there’s lots of completely different reasons why I think you’re mad. :-p

    On the working in the UK thing, you’ll be a proper teacher next time you try it, so it’ll go a lot easier than the everyone-shitting-on-you student teacher setup.

    And who says that travelling the world is a once-in-a-lifetime thing? Work for maybe five years, put what money you can aside, and then head off on a bimble across the planet for the sixth. Come back to Britain, work for another five, keep seeing the world. Maybe your wanderlust will die off over time, maybe you’ll always wander.

    At the moment, you’re feeling torn between two things: something you’ve got now and something that you can have if you choose it.

    Personally, I’d say make the most of what you’ve got now in Japan and then come back for a while to enjoy the other. There are other times and other countries.

    And what’s this thing you’re working on (or planning) that’s not a poem?

  3. To Archie: Yes true about the real and proper teacher thing but I will have been out of the English Education system for a while by that stage. I’ve never thought of world travel as being a once in a lifetime I’ve always rather assumed it’d be something that I kept doing.
    However the JET program is once in a lifetime.
    Keep your eye on the Writers Guild forum as to what I’m working on atm…

    To Lexie: I hope you’re looking after him!Hmmm where to get some ether…

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