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Benny’s first time speaking Japanese in person? Not quite! [video at Manga Hall event]


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Note: While I was initially aiming for 3 months, unfortunately preparations for my published book took up all of my time and I had to end the project at this 2 month point. Summary of the project is given here, but this video below represents the end point of the 2-months that were intensive in the project. Thanks for joining along!

Last weekend, I stumbled upon an interesting event; Valencia's Japan Weekend. I thought that this would be an excellent occasion to level upand use my Japanese in person for the first time! You can't get better than an event just about the country whose language you are learning… right?

The theme of the exposition, was “Manga Hall”, and there were lots of animé characters, computer games, manga of course, and aficionados dressed up in cosplay. Me and my camerawoman walked around for a while, recorded an intro for the video and then started to see that unfortunately most people attending were Spaniards.

I went to the information desk to ask (in Spanish) if there was someone from Japan who could talk to me about Japanese culture or travelling in Japan – a nice little quick video to mark my first time ever speaking Japanese in person. But there wasn't (misleading event name or what!)

“Does anyone here, even a Spaniard, speak Japanese by any chance?” I added – she laughed at the very strange question, and we walked away disappointed.

That's why, when I saw in the distance the only Asians in the building dressed up in the most ridiculous girly very Japanese manga looking costumes, I thought that they had to be Japanese! I got my microphone out, got the camera rolling, walked up to ask them about what their stall was about (I think it was called “Sweet Pink Cat”), and… well you can see what happened in the video!

I regret nothing! If you're dressed like that, in an event called “Japan weekend”, you're asking to be spoken to in Japanese 😉

It looks like my in-person uses of Japanese will have to wait until January! I hope the quick chat with Yuri-san (my teacher on italki) in the video about my ridiculous experience made up for the not-so-interactive conversation! Next video update in another week or two!

Oh, and Happy Thanksgiving weekend to all readers in the United States!

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Benny Lewis

Founder, Fluent in 3 Months

Fun-loving Irish guy, full-time globe trotter and international bestselling author. Benny believes the best approach to language learning is to speak from day one.

Speaks: Spanish, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Esperanto, Mandarin Chinese, American Sign Language, Dutch, Irish

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