Eye-Opening Moments Podcast

Horrors in Japan (and more)

May 21, 2024 Emily Kay Tan Episode 121
Horrors in Japan (and more)
Eye-Opening Moments Podcast
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Eye-Opening Moments Podcast
Horrors in Japan (and more)
May 21, 2024 Episode 121
Emily Kay Tan

Eye-Opening Moments are real-life stories of adversity, encounters, and perspectives intertwined. In this episode you will hear about Horrors in Japan and Everyday Happiness.


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Books: https://amazon.com/author/emily-kay-tan.2021_

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Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Eye-Opening Moments are real-life stories of adversity, encounters, and perspectives intertwined. In this episode you will hear about Horrors in Japan and Everyday Happiness.


Website: https://inspiremereads.com
Books: https://amazon.com/author/emily-kay-tan.2021_

Support the Show.



Comments or questions welcomed:
Twitter @emilykaytan OR https://inspiremereads.com.
Subscriptions appreciated: https://www.buzzsprout.com/1919670/support

Hello and welcome to episode #121 of Eye-Opening Moments where you’ll hear stories of adversity, encounters, and perspectives intertwined. They are moments that can lift your spirits, give you some food for thought, or move you. For the introspective mind that likes to reflect, discover, and find solutions or meaning in a complex life, this is for you. I’m your host Emily Kay Tan. In this episode, you will hear about Horrors in Japan and Everyday Happiness.

Horrors in Japan
Dreading the twelve hours I needed to be on the airplane to Taiwan from the USA, I boarded the plane. After eleven hours, I smiled and reclined my seat to relax and rejoice that I would be there soon. Then, over the intercom came the dreadful news. The pilot would be making a detour to land in Japan indefinitely because the destination to Taiwan was in the middle of a typhoon. No one knew when the storm would finish its attack and leave. And I didn't know how long I would be stuck in Japan.

I wanted to return to my abode abroad to rest before returning to work. But my relief from the long plane ride was short-lived. The airport workers passed out dinner vouchers and announced they would make hotel arrangements. We were to return to a meeting spot in two hours for more information. 

With the dinner voucher in hand, I pulled two suitcases, a carry-on luggage, and shouldered a backpack and purse to search for a place to eat. After roaming around for a restaurant priced at or below the dinner voucher, I finally found a café restaurant. Parking my cart of suitcases to the side, I sat down at the counter in the dimly lit eatery and put my backpack on the seat next to me. I strapped my purse of important belongings across my body to be always near me. I quickly ordered food but ate slowly; I had two hours to kill. I wondered how long it would be before the typhoon passed Taiwan and how long I would need to stay in Japan. The word indefinite was frightening; I wanted to know when I could get back to my life abroad. I couldn't ask anyone because no one had the answer. 

Soon, it was time to be back at the meeting spot. I got there in time to gather with others to listen for an update. We were indeed staying overnight, and it was not clear if we would need to stay any longer than that. As I waited for the bus to take us to a hotel, I met another passenger, and we started chatting. Our short chat made me feel better amid an unpredictable near future. Soon, we boarded the large bus and put our luggage in the storage compartment. My new acquaintance asked for us to sit together. I was happy to have the company; maybe she was a little frightened like me because we didn't know how long before we could fly again. Glad to have a friendly companion next to me, I sat down to chat with the lady again, but I felt something was wrong. I didn't know what it was, but in the next moment, I realized what it was and started to panic.

I ran off the bus and told the driver I had left my backpack at the restaurant. He said he would be going in ten minutes. Racing back to the terminal, I ran, looking for the restaurant. I knew it was upstairs. I walked swiftly in circles and could not find it. The layout was circular; how come I couldn't find the restaurant? I stopped to ask a local, but he could not speak English and didn't understand me even though I gestured to drink from a cup. The café had a cup on the sign. I asked another local and got a similar response. Asking for help didn't help. Running around in circles, I could feel my bangs get wet, and my face get more and more heated. Feeling hopeless, I stopped and was on the verge of tears because I couldn't find the place, and I knew the bus driver would not wait for me. I was like a lost child. I didn't know what to do and turned my head slightly to the right, and there it was on my right side. I ran into the restaurant, and there it was – my backpack sitting in the chair where I left it. I grabbed it and ran to the first floor and out of the terminal to find that the bus had left without me.

The horror of being stranded in Japan set in. It was nearly 11 p.m., and I had to wait for the next bus. It would be approximately twenty minutes. As I waited, more fear set in. I didn't know the name of the hotel I was supposed to go to, and I didn't know which stop to get off at. I couldn't ask where to get off when I didn't know the hotel's name. I couldn't ask if I got on the right bus because I didn't know where I was going. Here I was, a grown-up and lost like a child. Distressed, tears welled up in my eyes. The darkness of the night only made it scarier. And not speaking the language of the country you are in was no fun adventure.

Soon, a bus arrived. I wasn't sure if it was the correct bus, but I got on and didn't know where it would go. Looking out the window into the darkness, I could hear my heartbeat racing faster. Will the bus take me to where I needed to go? Where did I need to go to claim my luggage? I did not know. Soon, the bus stopped, and I saw a hotel with all windows in the front. I could see a lady standing inside next to some luggage. It was my luggage! I ran off the bus to embrace my dear suitcases. 

Soon after checking in, I hurried to use the hotel's internet to email my boss that my plane to Taiwan was delayed because of the typhoon, so I might not arrive in time for work. After typing that in, I felt silly. There was a typhoon in Taiwan, so there would be time off from work. But I was worried that I would miss a work day. Finally, in a hotel room to rest, I did not sleep well because I worried about how long my stay in Japan would be. Had I bought an iPhone, I could have texted my boss about the situation instead of paying for the use of the hotel computer. Had I remembered to put on my backpack after eating dinner, I would have saved myself from all the panic attacks and made a new friend. Had the typhoon not happened, I wouldn't have endured the horrors of being in Japan.

My worries were not over. I wondered how I would carry two suitcases, a carry-on luggage, a backpack, and a purse up five flights of stairs to my abode. There was no elevator. I hinted at all I needed to carry in my email to the boss. I hated asking for help even when I needed it badly. Luckily, she got the hint and said she would pick me up.

As soon as I arrived, I got a call from my boss. When I got out of customs, there she was with open arms to greet and welcome me back to my life abroad. I couldn't be happier to be back in Taiwan, where people are generally friendlier than in many other places. Her warmth made all the horrors of my layover disappear.

The horrors I experienced in Japan reminded me that though we may go through bad things, good things are around the corner. I must believe that life will balance itself out! It was scary for me, but I learned my lesson. Don't be cheap about getting a cell phone with internet or international access to information and translations. Be grateful for learning from bad experiences. Be thankful for the good things and all the kindness that comes your way. 

Everyday Happiness
Who isn’t looking for happiness? Even if we have it, it never seems enough, so we constantly search for more. Many look for it on vacations or exploring new places. Others look for it in relationships. Wherever you look for it, it need not be something elusive. You can find it anytime, every day.

I enjoy a shower every day. Rushing to take it, you lose out on its benefits. I close my eyes and feel the water gently beating on my head and running down my back and front. As I cleanse my body, I remind myself also to disinfect the dirt gotten during the day, such as the kid that was disrespectful towards me, or the inconsiderate staff I encounter. After a shower, I am refreshed and reenergized, which is a little happiness.

After a stressful day at work, I can look at my stuffed teddy bears, which makes me quickly smile because they are so cute. Who could have guessed that a stuffed animal could do that? We know how much joy it brings kids, but have you ever considered having one as an adult? It can bring a smile to your face and relax you, too.

After another stressful day at work, I can turn on soothing music to relax or upbeat music to feel joyful. Bhutan music is my best cure; it makes me feel peaceful and joyous. Turn on whatever music brings you happiness; it can quickly change or improve your mood!

Bhutan, a nation of 70% nature, has taught me that surrounding yourself with nature brings you peace and happiness from within. It can also remind you that you are but one part of the greater universe and to marvel at the wonders of nature instead of the petty things we may fuss about.

I love looking at the waves coming in and out from the enormous Pacific Ocean. It soothes and relaxes. I don’t see it as often as I used to, but a lake or river will do, too. While I write, even the sound of water running or rain is calming and soothing. I bought a transparent umbrella to see the raindrops beating down and enjoy nature at work. Appreciate the rain beating down on your window or roof; observe waterfalls, even if they are only on your screen. Relax and feel happiness.

Sing; let joy flow from your voice. Singing doesn’t just let your voice come out to express yourself; it releases the brain’s “feel good” chemical, allowing you natural pain relief! How quickly you can change a negative mood into a positive one by simply singing. When I was going through a bad breakup, I sang daily to keep my spirits up, and it did stop me from falling into a depression. So, sing and don’t be concerned about whether you sound good. What is more important is to feel that bit of happiness!

Write. Write what’s on your mind, let out frustrations, write what you want to say but didn’t dare to say aloud, curse the devils that anger you, and acknowledge and appreciate the good things that happened, too. They all serve to let you have unabashed full self-expression. So, write and get it all out; it feels better. It is another thing you can do for another bit of happiness!

After a bad breakup, I didn’t want to fall into a depression. I took matters into my own hands and consciously tried to do something. I sang and exercised daily. I took long showers, went hiking in nature, listened to rain music, talked to my teddy bears who won’t talk back or give me unwanted opinions, and wrote down my thoughts. They all helped give me some everyday happiness. But the one thing that brought me back to “Earth” was communicating with others, whether by phone, text or in person; the connection with other human beings made all the difference. 

Still, know that you can quickly give yourself a bit of happiness by enjoying showers, looking at a teddy bear, listening to music, walking in nature, viewing or listening to the water, exercising, singing, or writing. And remember to connect and communicate with others; it’s the greatest joy for happiness and a longer life!

Key Takeaways: Though I experienced a few horrors in Japan, I learned a few lessons and was reminded to appreciate any kindness I received. 

Though we may experience a little stress every day, we can also do some things to give us happiness every day.

Next week, you will hear about two real-life stories called How it All Ended and What Will They Find Out About You. If you enjoyed this episode of Eye-Opening Moments, please share it with others, support the show by clicking on the link in the description, or go to www.inspiremereads.com and leave a message. Thank you for listening!

 

 

 

Introduction
Horrors in Japan
Everyday Happiness
Key Takeaways