Message from New Zealandニュージーランドからのメッセージ




Hello. I’m Nanami. Near my lovely house, there are many cows and they live a slow life in the green field.  On the other side of the field is the ocean which is calm and inviting and safe to swim in. People swim there with their much loved dogs and leisurely spend their weekends and holiday at the beach. I hear their laughter.  Everything moves slowly and calmly in New Zealand. It’s a big difference compared to Japan. Can you imagine this New Zealand life? Now, I surely think my decision coming here was not wrong. This year, 2020, will be a year in which I have the opportunity to experience many new things.
First night when I stayed at my host family’s house, I felt homesick and I was crying until midnight.  I had never been overseas, so I was very nervous. Also, I realised that it’s tough for me to live without my family, as I was supported by them to take on this opportunity. I couldn’t get used to the new environment at first. To overcome my challenges, I decided to just accept my situation and make the most of my time in New Zealand, even though I struggled to make friends at first.
Making friends in a foreign country where you don’t know anyone can be stressful. I had to start making friends. I spoke to students and they tried to communicate with me, but I couldn’t understand what they were saying at all.  I asked them to repeat what they had said and they said, “NEVER MIND.” I prepared myself for a situation like that before I came to New Zealand, but when it happened, I was still shocked. I am getting better at understanding what the students are saying and this feels good.  My confidence in talking to my friends is also getting better. One of my favourite events was going to camp. It is an important event for students to build a bond with each other. I spent 4 days with my friends building great memories. We slept in the bush one night where we had to build a shelter to sleep under and walked for 1 hour in the bush at night without a torch. One of the nights we had to present a fashion show to the rest of the students, and this was really funny. I felt I was beginning to understand what they were saying and also about New Zealand’s culture as well. Honestly, it was hard to stay for 4 days with new friends, but I can say that the camp had absolutely helped me to build friends with kiwi kids; a good memory for me. 
I am certain that as the year goes on, I will make more good memories. At the moment, we are in lockdown due to Covid-19 and this means I am not spending time with my friends chatting and practising English. I still do not feel I am making much progress but I will have to wait and see as the year goes on. I am looking forward to any other events that the school is going to have this year. I feel much more confident in attempting whatever my stay in New Zealand brings.
To sum up my experience this far, I have taken every opportunity that came along. It may have been hard but the rewards were worth it. Also, I’ll never give up trying to make friends, as it is just as difficult for them to understand me. Eventually, friendship connections happen naturally. Ever since I knew I was going to come to New Zealand, I could never imagine how much I have learnt and experienced a different culture and language, had I stayed at home in Japan. Therefore, embrace the adventure and come to New Zealand. Kia kaha, Wash your hands properly.