This is the story of our own Miwa Yamanaka, a current CIEE student at American University of Sharjah.
She came here to obtain linguistic skills, cultural insights and new friends .. but she never thought that she will be obtaining trophies as well!
lets hear it from the Champ ..
Hi I am Miwa! I am enjoying my second semester at AUS under the nice weather of UAE. Today, I would like to talk about my experience in AUS tennis team. AUS has many sports teams such as soccer, volleyball and cricket. It is easy even for exchange students to join the sports team. I have registered for the tennis team since last semester, and one of my friends in CIEE is now joining in track & fields team as well. At the beginning of the semester, everybody receives the email about tryouts of sports team. I remember that when I visited sports complex to join the tryouts in the last semester, there was no tryout because only few girls play tennis here and there was no coach for girls team. In addition, tennis courts were demolished for renewal right after I came here. Although it does not seem the perfect situation to play tennis here, I fortunately met some girls who love tennis. Then, we started to go and practice at Sharjah Ladies Club (sports club near campus) before the tournaments. It is so different to join tennis team here compared to my home school in Japan. Here in AUS, they provide team members uniform, sweat shirt, bag, shoes, everything!! They even provide the bus to the tournament site and pay for the meal on the day. Last Sunday, I had a tournament in Ajman, which is another emirate next to Sharjah. The school bus had been supposed to leave AUS at 2pm, but it didn’t come on time. I was upset because I though we wouldn’t be able to join the tournament if we couldn’t make it on time. In Japan, we would default in tournament for any reason unless signing up in the reception 15 minutes prior to the match. We finally left school at 2:30, and arrived at tennis courts 5 minutes late. On the way to tennis courts, one of my friends told me “Don’t worry, it is not Japan here. We understand Arabic time”. I was still in hurry, but exactly as she said, there was still nobody in the courts!! After one and half hour, we finally found somebody responsible for the tournament and we started the game. After the singles game, we were supposed to have doubles game next. However, a girl in the opponent school said that we needed to do doubles game later because her partner was playing basketball now. I had never heard such excuse before, but there was no other way to delay the doubles game. So we waited another 2 hours watching basketball. At the time when we restarted our tournament, it was already too dark to play tennis and the light in the court was broken. But we restarted, and luckily (?) we won all the games in the dark!!
Overall, it might seem like an awful day to be kept waiting for some hours, but I actually enjoyed it. Generally, I could say people here are tolerant to individual’s situation, and flexible to deal with new circumstances. Back home, everything is very organized but it is true that people are not willing to listen to personal opinions in most cases. Also, what made me happy was a fancy ending ceremony, a big trophy and medals!! All’s Well That Ends WellJ