I first came to Vietnam in October 2016. I arrived Da Nang via Hanoi at night. I checked into Chu Hotel, the closest hotel to the sea, and immediately went to the sea. “Oh, it looks like it’s good here”, that was my first impression. At that moment, I intuitively thought that I might stay here for a long time. Reasons why I thought so: orange sand, unrefined-looking beachside construction, Vietnamese people in the sea in their clothes, Asian resorts with many Asians, and a population that is clearly younger than Japan’s, and a growing economy. The city and the sea are lit up and the atmosphere feels safe. The temperature was over 20 degrees Celsius in winter, and there was no pollen in the air. Besides, there were few surfers, with the quality of the surfers warm and decent. I felt that this would be an easy, convenient and safe way to live a surfing life near the sea. I have been travelling back and forth between Da Nang and Japan for almost three years.
I later realised that getting into the life and work situation of a country and experiencing the differences in national structures and culture is the “essence of knowing the world”. It doesn’t matter which country you are in, knowing one country other than your own in depth is more meaningful than knowing 10 countries in a surface level. To know the world is to compare it with your own country and to learn why people and countries are so different. I learnt that even when there are obvious differences from Japan, or when the standards are the exact opposite, this is what it means to live in a foreign country. Completely different ideas, completely different languages and communication methods and precision, different standards of living and beliefs, different laws, rules and manners and efficacy, the positions of the people running the country. There is a mixture of countries and people in so many different states on the planet. At a time when our association with the world cannot be ignored, even on an individual level, I really wanted to share this feeling.
I am leaving Da Nang.
We stayed in the same place too long. As a result, the excessive fatigueness of things has increased, and finally even my head has become exhausted and dull. It has been three years since I felt this, but was swayed by the comfort of ‘no change’. Finally, I have made the decision to move. I am looking forward to a minimalist lifestyle. Now, I will start to pack my belongings.