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My Tsukuba City

My Tsukuba: The Life I Dreamed of

May 20, 2013 3:06 PM

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 After a long flight, I arrived in Tsukuba on October 3rd 2011. It took me more than 24 hours from Rio de Janeiro City, located on the other side of the world, to Tsukuba. Despite a great fatigue caused by such a long journey, my heart was filled with excitement and positive feelings. Finally, a dream I had dreamt for too long came true! Before leaving Brazil I searched about Tsukuba City and gathered many informations, but until that day I was very curious about how the city really looked like. In order to study in Japan, I applied for a research scholarship from Ministry of Education, Science, Technology, Culture and Sports (MEXT) of Japan on May 2010. I had to face fierce competition and a very strict selection process to pursue my dream. All the happiness came at once when I place my feet on Tsukuba for the first time. I was so glad, I was finally in Tsukuba!. On that day, when I breathed the fresh air of Tsukuba and saw in person the city's calm scenery, I was sure of how successful was my decision of coming to Tsukuba.



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 The reason why I came to Tsukuba is quite simple. I could study at the University of Tsukuba, receive guidance from a excellent professor, and lead a calm life, peacefully doing my research. Before coming to Japan, I had a busy, inconvenient daily life. Living far from work and university, I had to spent precious hours of my day on transportation. As a result, I could not relax and was constantly sick. However, in Tsukuba I could leave close to the university, a few minutes on foot from home to the office or the library. Besides that, I would be able to have a more healthy life, shopping or going to places by bycicle and eating fresh food produced in Ibaraki Prefecture. Another strong point of Tsukuba is its location in Kanto Area. If I ever had to travel or to visit a research center, attend a lecture at a university in Tokyo, I could easily arrive there from Tsukuba Station in an hour. In other words, in Tsukuba my dream of living a full life finally came true!


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 In order to come to Japan, I had to leave my family and friends behind. So, it is not hard to imagine that the first months were a bit lonely. I did not know in whom I should trust, nor how I could make friends. But, as time passed I met many different people and made precious friends. My encounters with Japanese and people from other nationalities put me in touch with other cultures, teaching me a lot about the world. In other words, while showing each other's personalities in an environment where we all respect each other, in Tsukuba I could learn many things and matured not only as researcher, but specially as a human being. In fact, I guess I have to thank all people I have met until now!

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 I took part in many activies since I arrived in Tsukuba. Probably the most impressive was a visit to an elementary school where I was supposed to make a presentation about Brazil. Children listened carefully to what I had to say and earnestly made many interesting questions. After my speech was over and there was nothing left to be asked, I played with the students and until now I have the origami they gave me. I was sincerely touched by the way teachers and students welcomed me, their sincerity and kindness during an afternoon together. Also, I am moved by the way shop assistants and taxi drivers work hard to communicate with foreigners who cannot read nor speak Japanese. The kind heart of Tsukuba residents is really amazing!


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 Tsukuba is just as I imagined, as I wanted: eco-friendly, convenient and quite. Tsukuba is the perfect place for researchers that want to carry their studies peacefully, alone or with their families. The inspiration I receive from the city's beautiful landscape brings me hope to a brighter and better future. I love Tsukuba!


Ms. Aline Rocha de Souza

International Exchange Coordinator


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