“I want to actually speak English with English speakers!”
I googled “where to talk to English speakers” on the Internet and spent 30 minutes.
I never dreamed that I would feel so much “frustration,” “despair,” and “discouragement.
Why, you ask?
Because I realized that no matter how much I looked on the Internet, there was no place nearby where I could casually talk and interact with English speakers.
I went around to various places to gather information, but I could not find the kind of place I was looking where I could interact with English speakers in a casual and safe environment.
* It is true that there are places in Japan where you can interact with English speakers, such as foreigner bars and international exchange parties, but these places were far away from my desire to “practice speaking”. What I want to do is not drink and have a good time with people from overseas. (To begin with, there are not many such places in my rural Kagawa Prefecture.)
I was about to give up on the idea that it would be impossible for me to have an environment where I could speak English practically as long as I stayed in Japan. I was about to give up.
At that time, I received an e-mail from a woman who was also studying English.
She said, “Aki, I am also looking for a place to speak English, but I can’t find it. Could you please tell me where I can find a good place?”
I was at a loss for words.
I couldn’t find a place where I could speak English even though I had looked for a place where I could speak English by myself so much.
“Let’s give up. As long as you stay in Japan, it is impossible to find a place where you can speak English.”
I was so frustrated that I was about to tell her so.
I wondered if I should leave the current situation in Japan as it was, that as long as I stayed in Japan, I would never have a chance to speak English.
“No, I will not give up! If it’s not there, then I’ll make it myself!”
So I gathered local English speakers and Japanese who were learning English in Kagawa Prefecture and started an event in the same way as Ohanasi Kagawa, which is now online, and that’s how it all started.
And Ohanasi Kagawa took a big turn with COVID-19.
To be continued in my blog.