If you have watched the anime Honey and Clover, you would know where Takemoto sets out for somewhere on his bike in order to find himself. Leaving everything behind, he starts his journey alone. I am not pretty sure this term is becoming common among young people because of him, but this anime is well-known in general so that even non-otaku people started to say, I suppose so.
For example, when a student doesn’t know what to do about his future career, and gets tired of having some pointless interviews, he leaves for somewhere(mostly a faraway place)…or else, when a woman gets tired of her aimless days and cries out for her unknown future, she leaves for somewhere…like Takemoto does so. Yes, if you want to travel in order to find yourself, you can call your journey 自分探しの旅[jibun sagashi no tabi, “a journey of self-discovery”]. 自分[jibun] means yourself, 探し[sagashi] is a noun form of 探す[sagasu, find], and 旅[tabi] means a journey.
Having said that, the career advisor ridiculed this term including those who do this in front of all the students when I was a student at university. Cited her words, “Such a journey is really ridiculous. That is not to find yourself, but to escape. Don’t misunderstand, please.” However you feel about this, I shall leave it to you. Well, whatever you do, wherever you are, everything is you…so I think if you want to find yourself, you wouldn’t even have to go further. You just do something you have never done before, otherwise it would make you find another yourself. But that is only one side of you. Just you didn’t realise it… OMG, that was my boring thoughts, never mind.
I still remember Kimpachi-sensei 5(金八先生) where one of Kimpachi’s students leaves home and tries to go as further as he can. The student has not decided to pursue a higher education or to work though the graduation comes soon. Not knowing what to do, he walks along the long river, and stays the night. While he stares at the fire he sets up to warm his body, he feels like going home somehow…Yes, he realises going further doesn’t work out, but he should think about his future after all. It leads to a midiocre conclusion, but I don’t think his one-day journey is a waste because he could find his own answer. No one else but him knows what he wants, so the action he takes should be important no matter how pointless it seems to be.
Same goes to Takemoto. He doesn’t carry anything with him when he leaves. He is aiming for somewhere. Even though it seems to be reckless, he would find his answer because he keeps going.
A while ago, I gave it a try for cosplay for the first time. Thanks to it, I could make friends with some cosplayers. And it sure could broad my world…Is this 自分探しの旅, too in a way? I didn’t mean to find myself, but I did just because I wanted to do.
When I was in Canada, I made friends with the very person who suggested me I should make this blog. If I hadn’t been to Canada, I wouldn’t have seen her. And it also means I wouldn’t have come up with this blog, and I daresay I wouldn’t have known you. I went to Canada because I wanted to go. I started this blog because I took up her suggestion.
If a journey is one way to start something new in this way, I am not gonna say 自分探しの旅 is just a waste. 😀