When I was waiting for my mother at PDX airport, I was little bit nervous. I hadn’t seen her almost two years,and I was thinking about how I would react to her. In Japan, hugging is not a common way of greeting. I have never hugged my family. But I could not really remember how I acted towards her when I was glad to see her.
When she came out from the exit, we just said “hi” to each other. She immediately started to talk about how she had had a very long walk in the LA airport to get to the correct gate for her flight to Portland. It seemed like we were not sure how to act around each other.
But after a little while, we started to talk normally, gossipping and chatting about family and friends in Japan.
We had a great time during her visit. I took her to major sights in Portland, such as Powell’s Books and the Rose Garden. I brought her here to PSU, showed her my studio in the art building, introduced my classmates, and took her to the major buildings on campus. She stayed in the Park Block reading a book while I was in class.
She said she liked PSU and Portland, and that she was able to relax during her visit. She was happy that she could see what kind of environment I lived in and got an idea of what my future here could be. I then realized that she came from Japan to not only see me, but to find out if I was happy and if this was the right place for me.