Last night I dreamed I was back in school, in a class with one of my high school English teachers. Sitting next to me was someone new, a person from the South who denied being from the South because she was British. We were talking about a person I went to school with and how she talks about going to Japan twice a year and it irritates me because I haven’t been there even once.

Then my new Southern-British acquaintance and I were actually in Japan, at a bus stop. The bus arrived but I didn’t have all of my things put away in my bag and as I was getting them arranged so I could get on, she got on and was yelling for me to hurry, and I went to get on and it left. So I was standing there alone with some other people who were waiting for the next one.

I started walking down the hill to the next stop, hoping we could meet up sooner. I passed by a convenience store that was closing for the night even though it was 7:30. I kept walking and it was in this weird industrial area and it was suddenly dark. I think it did occur to me in the dream that this was not the Japan I knew because no Japanese city would be this dark at night, void of all streetlights. I thought maybe it was something to save energy. I started freaking out because I couldn’t see, thinking, “I can’t see, I can’t see,” and then I thought, “Quit telling yourself that!”

I thought about going back to the convenience store because at least there should be light there and I thought I could maybe ask the clerk to help me call a taxi. I thought, “I learned how to say that in Duolingo, right? Why can’t I remember any of that stuff? I’m drawing a complete blank.” But I kept trying to calm down, thinking, “I could probably just say ‘taxi’ and they would know what I mean. Or I could type it into my phone and my phone could translate it. Yeah, I can do that.”

But as I was walking back to the convenience store, which I knew would be an issue since it had already closed, I came over the hill and it was morning. Everything was bright and colorful and busy. And I calmed down and realized all I had to do was get on my phone and do a search for English-friendly or multilingual hotels and just plug that into google maps and I’d be fine. So I walked around, passing by all these places that I knew from researching my trip or from anime, and I had my little map up on my cell phone and found a hotel. At the time I thought, “This hotel isn’t as good as some of the others. I know there are other English-friendly hotels around here. Why aren’t they showing up in my search?” But then I was like, “It doesn’t matter. I don’t have to stay here the whole time; I just need to find a room for the night so I can regroup. I can stay here for one night.”


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