by Satomi

Hello everybody! I hope you`re all looking forward to Christmas! I`m Stephen and I come from Reading in the UK. Reading is just west of London so I often go there to go sightseeing, shopping and to go to the theatre. It`s a really fantastic city; I really recommend that you visit if you can! I`m a student of Japanese and German at Cardiff University in the UK and I`m currently an exchange student at Hiroshima University until next August. So far I`ve been really surprised by lots of different aspects of Japanese society, but one of the things I`ve found to be the most surprising is how important business cards are to Japanese business people! One of my classes at Hiroshima University is called "Internship class" and in this class we learn how to act in a business setting (although the class is a little difficult since it`s 70% in Japanese!). During this class we`ve  been learning things such as self introductions; how to speak politely (敬語); and how to make and give business cards. In the UK I don`t think I`ve ever seen one, but in Japan I`ve noticed that they`re very important! I find this class really enjoyable as I get the experience to learn about aspects of Japanese society that I wouldn't usually get to, whilst learning Japanese as well! I`m sure there are lots of other differences in Japanese society, so please come to explain some of the differences you`ve found between foreign cultures and you own! I hope to see you soon!