Rafał Raw is a chemistry teacher at University of Rzeszów in Poland.
Rafał Raw (Polish Chemistry Teacher) Interview Vol.2
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Part 3 : Polish and Japanese can learn from both
Rafał: There are many things like Polish people can learn from Japanese people.
Like, more organization and also, more like, appreciation of things that are done?
Like, Japanese people will pick the trash, if they go somewhere like to an ONSEN (hot spring) or trip, they will always get the trash back, they will clean the house afterwards and everything.
You don’t see sadly this in Poland.
And, from Polish people, Japanese people can learn to speak their minds more.
And, don’t care always about being polite.
Sometimes you have to be a little bit impolite to get what you want to say to somebody.
Sometimes it’s a little bit troubling…
For example, if, if I’m asked to do some kind of a job, and I show my results to somebody, and ask them for an opinion.
They will not tell you that it’s bad, because it would be like bad manners.
Rafał: So, I don’t know what’s the expression is for that but sometimes it is very troubling for people from other countries.
Because in Europe and also in Poland we are used to speaking straight.
If I do something wrong and you don’t like it, you say that you don’t like it.
And if you will not tell me that you don’t like it, I will not know it.
No matter how many times you’ll say to me like, ah it’s good but it’s mmm, we will stand there until you tell me that it’s not good.
I will not get it otherwise, so…
Sometimes it’s like very problematic for me because… when I’m staying with somebody and I ask them if I can do something but they will say like “ah, you can do this but maybe tomorrow” or something.
So, I’m waiting until tomorrow and then I will ask again, “can I do it?”
“Ah, maybe tomorrow” and…
“No, you cannot do it,” and it’s simple. So, yeah.
Part 4 : What is WWOOF program?
――What kind of travel agency did you choose to come to Japan?
Rafał: I went to Japan with something called “WWOOF” program.
Rafał: Yup. It’s some kind of a exchange program.
You can come to a person in Japan and exchange for help.
You can stay at the home or facility.
It depends on the person who are you staying with.
For example, now I’m staying in two places.
One place was a farmer’s house, so I was helping him on his farm, just like chopping fire wood, making plants grow, weeding…
And, now I’m staying with a person who is maintaining a school.
So I’m also helping in the, in the school.
Sadly not as a teacher because I don’t know Japanese well, but I’m helping like fixing things.
It’s a very nice program for people who want to travel to Japan.
The reason I recommend WWOOF
Rafał: This is like the best option, not only because you live with the people, you get like the full family experience.
You not only visit Japan but you somehow live in Japan.
And that’s very, very nice thing you…
It’s a totally different experience from a normal… like travelling agency.
Rafał: Yeah, it can be also very nice for Japanese people, not only because they have a worker, but also they have a opportunity to know about different countries, different cultures.
They can have also like the vacation experience without even leaving home because people will come to their home.
And, to be honest, it’s also nice opportunity for Japanese people to learn English.
Because many people in Japan know English but they are a little bit afraid of speaking it, not to make like… like mistakes.
So, then you can speak your mind whatever you want.
Because we won’t judge, we are happy that you welcomed us in your home and we will be grateful for that.