Seiko-Epson General Orientation

On Wednesday this week, we took part in this orientation offered by Seiko-Epson Corporation to all of its foreign employees and trainees. We, being foreign trainees, automatically qualify for this orientation.

The orientation started out with the usual blah blahs and actually, it was quite boring. We were given a brief history of the Seiko-Epson Corporation (SEC) and how it came to be what it is now… a Big Japanese company.

It was quite surprising to discover that what a garage house is to Hewlett-Packard, a miso soup house is to Seiko-Epson. SEC actually started out as a very small company in a small miso soup house there in Suwa village in Nagano Prefecture.

Discovering that we still have time after our lunch, we took a short visit to the famous Suwa Lake. Basically, Suwa Lake is famous for being host to the third biggest fireworks display (Hanabi) in the whole of Japan. (Actually, we’ve already seen this famous Suwa Lake Hanabi or Fireworks Display).

Aside from the Hanabi, an American colleague told us that this lake is also famous for one other thing. In the middle of the lake, there is this small island filled with monuments celebrating the most famous of all phallic objects. Do you know what it is? I better not say it here. Instead, I’d let your imagination tell you what these monuments celebrate.

In the afternoon, we were grouped into three groups to discuss two topics. One, how we can enjoy life in Japan and two, how we should treat our Japanese colleagues in the office.

Worth noting though is what our group came up with to answer the first question. We answered, “Get a Japanese boy/girlfriend, preferably with a car.”

At first, it sounds funny but when you come to think of it, it’s true. What better way to enjoy life in Japan but to get a Japanese boy/girlfriend, who has a car. For one thing, you’ll get an instant Nihon-go teacher and an instant Tour Guide. For another thing, you’ll get all the reasons you need to stay and enjoy in Japan. Hmmm, maybe I should get one… soon. 🙂

One more good thing that came our from this orientation is that we met two very good French friends. One is Guillaume and the other is Moui. We ate dinner together in our favorite Italian restaurant here in Hirooka and by the looks of it, that dinner was the start of fruitful friendships between them and us.


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