First I would talk about how my perception changed before and after the program. After the program I think I had some wrong views about America. One of my wrong views is about food. Before the program I thought almost every American food was covered in oil and big. But actually there were many kinds of food and some food were healthy than I expected. For example during the program I ate Vietnam food, Korean food, Italian food, Japanese food and so on, and many food were less greasy than expected. Not only in America but also in Japan we can eat food of various countries, so I think this view was just bias for America. Second I had wrong view about safety in America. I worried about having my pocket picked and to be shot by gun. But these worries were unnecessarily. Before the program I thought Japan was safer than America but I think safety is same in both countries. Perhaps it depends on the area, at least the places visited by the program were safer than I expected. I did not know actual state of America until I had experienced America, so I thought it was important to experience with my own eyes.
Next I would talk about things I would still like to learn about the U.S. I would like to visit other areas of U.S., because America is big and I only experienced limited and specific areas, so I visit other places and I want to know America more. I felt that Williamsburg and Washington, D.C. were very different and I was surprised these differences. Williamsburg has a calm atmosphere. On the other hand in Washington, D.C there is lots of traffic and it is noisy. The people’s atmosphere is also differ. I thought people in Williamsburg were friendly than people in Washington, D.C. Because America is larger than Japan I suspect cities in America are more diverse than Japan. Of course Japan also has various cities and features are different depends on the area. For example Shibuya and Hinohara Village are both Tokyo, but they are very different. Shibuya is busy and there are many people. In contrast Hinohara Village is calm and there is even a waterfall. Even small country like Japan there are many different areas, I think America is more diverse than Japan. I would like to visit other places in America and I want to know about America more.
Next I would talk about most important things I learned. The lecture of race relations in American history was very impressed. Before the program I knew about the separation of black people, but I did not have much information about it. The lecture was good opportunity to cultivate a better understanding. I learned that segregation still remains now and I felt sad about this fact. Actually during this program the accident of white supremacists occurred and some people were injured. I feel it is difficult to solve this problem, because we unconsciously feel a sense of incongruity for people of different race types and the problem of race relation continued from long ago. Japan also have the racial problem, so I think it is good to cooperate America and Japan to solve these problem. I hope that all people can live happy irrespective of race someday.
Finally, I would talk about cultural observations of life in the United States. Sometimes I felt that the feeling regarding the distance was different between the United States and Japan. For example, when we went museums in a free time, I heard that we could go two museums because they were so close. I thought I could move between two museums by walking. But actually we used car and I felt it took many times. America is bigger than Japan, so I think that the sense of distance is different from Japan. From my experience in Japan people say that “the distance is close” when we can go destination within 30 minutes or less than 30 minutes. But I think American people use “close” even when it take 60minutes by car. This program was very short but it was fun. This time was an unforgettable memory for me.