A language I was absolutely obsessed with at age 10 when I came across the manga section at my local library in Adelaide. At the time I had a Japanese pen-pal called Mami who had spent a few months at my primary school. After reading books about the Japanese customs and lifestyle, I started learning the alphabet and performed in the Taiko Drumming troupe at my primary school for three years. 

Through this I had the incentive to learn the language and would spend weekends writing out new words on my walls which I had picked up from the anima series “Love Hina”.

I fell in love with it! Love Hina is a series about students from Tokyo U at a girl’s boarding house. I looked up beginner resources on the internet, taught myself some of the Hiragana, Katakana and Kanji alphabet but the best starting point I found was borrowing travel phrase books.

Unfortunately, when I got to high school I could only choose two languages out of the total of seven that were offered and continued with French and Spanish (picking up German later on). Had it been possible, I would have filled my schedule with only languages but I suppose a bit of Science, Mathematics and Drama also taught me a few useful skills along the way like keeping track of my spending and working out percentages.

From time to time I have practiced some Japanese with Flashcards, apps and using beginner phrases with friends but my next step is to take it on more intensively and am in the process of finding an interactive beginners learning book. So if you’re a Japanese learner and have any recommendations, definitely hit me up!

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