I look forward to hearing from you soon.
I believe my destiny and Dr. Kimura have pushed me to the right path… ☺
Undram Sainzaya, MD (Mongolia)
I read this saying from a Kanji book my mom bought me few months before I left for Japan. This
saying in English translates to, “a journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.”
To be far away from home can be very difficult, especially for someone like me who has never
lived away from my family (not even for college, medical school, or dermatology residency).
Although I’ve always wanted to start living independently, the idea of living alone in a foreign
country scared me a little. I did imagine how fun and exciting it would be to travel and see new
places, meet new friends, and decorate my own place, but I didn’t realize it would be quite a
challenge to start a new chapter in my life on
my own. In order to live through I have learned
the importance of having street smarts and connections. These two essentials have helped me
keep up with the daily life here in Sapporo. Knowing (a few) basic Japanese phrases or
expressions, having a good sense of direction, being perceptive and resourceful, knowing the
daily weather and how to keep warm (it gets really cold in Sapporo), and having friends (both
Filipino and international) to guide or support you all
of these come in handy, especially into
the first few weeks.
Setting out on your own can be challenging in the beginning, but to start a journey one must
learn how to brave that first step.
Margaret Mary B. Alegre, M.D.
I started training at the Sapporo Dermatopathology Institute in April.
Class starts at 8am. We share 50-60 slides in the morning under Dr.Kimura’s guidance. In the afternoon, I look up something new in the textbooks and papers. When I have enough time, I see slides by myself. I leave at 5pm. After I go home, I see slides uploaded on the web. In April, I learned a lot, especially how to see at scanning magnification.
During my first day, I met the other trainees and we introduced ourselves. They are doctors from Vietnam, Philippines, and Mongolia. I found a phrase that can describe our diversity, “lingua franca.” This means, a language adopted as a common language between speakers with different languages. We used English as our lingua franca. This is a good opportunity to communicate in English.