Being well-informed on culture and traditions of the region we live can ease up the beginning of a good relation of friendship between neighbors. For example, in Japan, when we move into a new neighborhood, it is customary to take a small souvenir when making the first greeting visit to the neighbors.
Let’s learn how we should do in the first greeting visit to Japanese neighbors?
|– Yes, sir?||– Sorry for the inconvenience. My name is Fujita, I have just move into the house beside.|
|– Good afternoon.||– Good afternoon. Sorry for the inconvenience at this time.|
|– No problem, please feel free.||– I come to greet you since I have just move into the house beside. I am Fujita. I live with my wife and my son, who is a junior high school student. We would like to count on your understanding.|
|– It’s my pleasure, I would like to count your understanding too.||– This is a small souvenir.|
|– Thank you for your kindness.||– I count on your understanding.|
|– If you need something, count on me.||– I appreciate your kindness.|
|– You’re welcome.||– Thank you. Excuse-me.|
|– Please feel free.||– Excuse-me.|
– In the case are we invited to get in the house of a Japanese? Let’s learn how to proceed?
|– Yes, sir?||– Excuse-me, here is Fujita.|
|– Hi, good afternoon. Welcome.||– Good afternoon. Sorry for the inconvenience at this time.|
|– Please, come in.||– Thank you. Excuse-me.|
|– Here, please.||– Thank you, excuse-me.|
*Place the tip of your shoes toward the door. And while setting the position of your shoes, be careful for not place your back to the host person, since it is a rude gesture.
|– Drink some tea.||– Thank you. I’ll drink some. Sorry, I am not so good in Japanese and don’t know the traditions, so, could you please teach me the correct way?|
|– It is not so difficult. First we say “itadakimasu’.||-Yes, itadakimasu.|
|– Hold it with your right hand and place it into your left hand. Drink it slowly.||– Yes.- It’s delicious.|
|– Thank you.||– During a visit, what kind of matter can we talk about?|
|– Let’s see, Japanese people like to talk about the weather.||– About the weather?
– Today the weather is good, isn’t it?
|-Yes, it is. Weather is pleasant, isn’t it?||– Yes, it is true. In a good weather we can do good activities, can’t we?|
|– Yes, it is true.
– Did you go anywhere to enjoy the cherry blossoms?
|– Yes, I did.|
|– Where did you go?||– Near the area to Tsu station there is a beautiful park, I went there with my family.|
|– Was it good?||-Yes, it was good!|
|– Did you take anything to eat?||– No, on that day I didn’t take anything.|
|– Is it true?
– Were there many Japanese?
|– Yes, there were many.|
– Talk about daily matters, talk about the weather, travel and your home country.
Among foreign residents there are also the ones who maintain a good relation with their Japanese neighbors. They live together and try to learn commonly with the cultural differences. We heard a report from a Brazilian family living in the city of Suzuka.
[Interview with Brazilian family]
Humberto: “We have a good relation with Japanese people, although I am not good in Japanese. And I am able to understand them. They always help me when I need and they also help my son.”
Cristina: “Sometimes we receive letters written in kanji and some of them we take to our Japanese neighbors and they help us, they explain the content, they help us how to proceed, without asking they to come they come to our door to see if we need something. They are helpful. It is important because everyday you meet them, in the morning, at the time you are leaving to work, we have to greet them, we need to have a good relation with them because you have a daily contact with them, there are some things we have to do in the neighborhood, so it is important because it makes us feel better. Living in a place like that, where everyone get along, there is friendship.
Humberto: “I like my neighbors very much, they come here, talk to us, and even to me who don’t know Japanese they are so kind.
Keeping a good relation with people from where you reside is very important. Through a good relation with your neighbors they will be able to help you in case of emergency, and through a mutual understanding on the language and traditions, they will be able to help you on cultural activities in the neighborhood.
Many foreigners avoid a relation with their Japanese neighbors due to lack of knowledge on Japanese culture. But, how about trying through a smile or a gesture of willingness in some activity? It can be a good pretext to start a good relation with your neighbors.