The Displaced Nation

A home for international creatives

12 NOMADS OF CHRISTMAS: Wendy Tokunaga, American Japanophile (2/12)

Current home: San Francisco Bay Area, USA
Past overseas location: Tokyo, Japan
Cyberspace coordinates: Wendy Nelson Tokunaga | Fiction writer and manuscript consultant (author site) and @Wendy_Tokunaga (Twitter handle)

Where are you spending the holidays this year?
At home, in the Bay Area.

What do you most like doing during the holidays?
Eating!

Will you be on or offline?
Good question. I spend so much time online (Twitter and Facebook mainly) networking with readers and other writers, but I do go offline when I’m on vacation. I’m thinking of foregoing social media between Christmas and New Year’s, even though I’ll be in town. We’ll see if I can hold out.

Are you sending any cards?
I used to love to send out Xmas cards and would give much thought each year as to which ones to choose. But now with keeping touch so much via social media, I’ve stopped sending cards and just exchange holiday greetings with people via Twitter, Facebook and email. My husband and I sometimes upload a holiday photo of the two of us. I have never in my life sent out the dreaded Xmas bragfest newsletter.

What’s the thing you most look forward to eating?
See’s Candies and my husband’s Xmas prime rib.

Can you recommend any good books other expats or “internationals” might enjoy?
I’m going to look so tacky here, but I’d like to plug my own e-book (blush), which is called Marriage in Translation: Foreign Wife, Japanese Husband. It consists of interviews with 14 Western women involved in cross-cultural relationships. It’s a fascinating (if I say so myself!) glimpse into these couples’ lives and will appeal to anyone interested in international marriage and culture shock.

If you could travel anywhere for the holidays, where would it be?
Maui!

What’s been your most favorite holiday experience — when you’ve felt the true joy of the season?
I don’t know about the true joy of the season, but I do have a fond memory of spending Xmas in Tokyo and having it be a regular workday, which I quite enjoyed. I sometimes get weary of the constant pressure and obligation in the U.S. to have a family-filled Xmas and be happy and spend money. In Tokyo there are plenty of Xmas trees and lights (my fave parts of Xmas), but it is just a regular day and that’s appealing.

How do you feel when the holidays are over?
I actually like it. There’s a new, fresh sense of energy in starting a new year and anticipating exciting things to come.

On the first day of Christmas, my true love said to me:
TWO CANDY BOXES,
& AN IRISHMAN IN A PALM TREE!

STAY TUNED for Monday’s featured nomad (3/12) in our 12 Nomads of Christmas series.

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3 responses to “12 NOMADS OF CHRISTMAS: Wendy Tokunaga, American Japanophile (2/12)

  1. ML Awanohara December 24, 2011 at 10:36 am

    @Wendy
    Just as this post went up, I noticed on the Yahoo search on my BlackBerry that “prime rib” was trending — has this become a typical Christmas dinner in the US? I lived in England for so long where turkey was the norm (there being no Thanksgiving) that I’ve rather lost touch with Christmas eating habits in my native land…

  2. Michelloui December 27, 2011 at 1:54 pm

    Actually, I think it’s pretty cool to mention your book as it sounds really interesting!

    Mmmm…and now I’m craving prime rib rather than the turkey curry I’m about to make!

  3. Wendy Tokunaga December 28, 2011 at 11:32 am

    @Awanohara-san, If prime rib was trending for Xmas dinner as typical in the US, then maybe it’s all because of my husband.🙂 I think people here, after having turkey for Thanksgiving a few weeks before, hanker for something new.

    @Michelloui, thk you! We still have some prime rib leftovers if you’d like to come over.🙂

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