“Feeling Inside Language” by Taiyo Tokunaga

My first language is Japanese, since I was born and my second language is English, since three years ago. My first words were “Mom” and “Dad” in Japanese. I think almost everyone’s first words are also the same as mine in their own language. I usually dream in Japanese and think in Japanese, but after learning English at AMADEUS, I often think in English and can communicate in English. Sometimes there are words that I can explain in Japanese but that I cannot explain in English. In Japanese there are also words that are the same as English, because these words are from English. I like these kinds of words, because they sound like special words…

My favourite word in Japanese is “いただきます”. We speak this word when we start to eat our food. It means, “appreciation for food” and shows that we respect the food. Most people do not eat all of the food which they take. This is seen as disrespectful because in Japan, we eat all of what we take, because we respect the food.

In addition, there is “ごちそうさま”in Japanese; this also means, “thanks for the food” but it is said when the people finish eating. This means that we say thanks for the food twice. I think this is a great thing. It is a part of our culture. Maybe I like the culture more than the word, but the word is made from the culture, so l like this word.

There is also a good word in English. This is: “You are welcome”. People say this word when someone has said “thank you”. Everyone often says, “thank you” and I think it might be a normal thing to say “you are welcome”, but it is a very important thing to do. This is because when people say, “you are welcome”, you feel good that you are not ignored and then you think you will say it again. I had an experience when I was ignored after I said “thank you” and I felt bad. These words keep our mental health well, so we should keep saying these words. We can make everyone feel better through language.