なんでかわからないけど、アフリカゾウが好き I don’t know why but I love the African elephants



She is going to go to Costa Rica soon for a year to work as a volunteer under Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA).

>> コスタリカで何が楽しみ?

What do you look forward to in Costa Rica?

<< 動物かな! それだもん、決めて。

Animals! That is why I chose Costa Rica among other places.


>> コスタリカって、どんな動物がいるの?

What kind of animals are living there?

<< ナマケモノ、アリクイ、バクとか。あと、年に1回カメが大集結して産卵する場所があるんだって!見たいなぁ。

Sloths, anteaters, tapiers, and more.  I heard there is an island where turtles gather and lay their eggs once a year, which would be cool to see.


>> へぇ!そこでどんな仕事をするの?

Wow, amazing! What are you going to do there?

<< 市の環境教育施設を作るのにかかわるんだ。まだ建物が立っていないから、どんな感じになるんだろうってところだけど。

I am going to work with the city’s environmental education center. They haven’t even built the building yet so I will see what I am going to do when I arrive there.


>> まさみは昔から動物が好きで、いろんな国で野生動物を見てきたよね。今までどんなところに行った?

You have been many countries to see wild animals. Where have you been so far?

<< ボルネオ、ケニア、カナダ、オーストラリアのケアンズ、ニカラグア、かな。

Borneo, Kenya, Canada, Australia, and Nicaragua.

>> 難しい質問かもしれないけど、どこが一番印象に残ってる?

I know it’s difficult to pick one, but which trip was the most impressive to you?

<< やっぱり、ケニアでアフリカゾウを見たことかな。なんでか知らないけど、アフリカゾウが好きなの。私の最終目標はアフリカゾウのいるところで住むこと。いつかケニアに住みたい。

Hmm, it would be when I saw the African Elephants in Kenya. I don’t know why but I love the African elephants. My final goal is to live where the elephants exist. I want to live in Kenya someday.

>> ふつう、ゾウがいるからってケニアに移住しないでしょ!! 動物園のゾウじゃだめなの?

You want to move to Kenya just because you love the elephants!? That sounds a little bit crazy to me. Why not the elephants in zoos?

<< 野生のおっきい群れじゃないとダメ。

No, it must be the real elephants, living in groups, in the wild.

>> なるほどね。野生動物に興味があるのか。獣医になろうと思ったこともあったんだっけ?

I see, you are interested in the wild animals. You were thinking about becoming a veterinarian too, weren’t you?

<< 獣医も考えたけど、環境全体について働くほうが、個体を助けるよりやれることが多いと思うんだ。個体を自然に返しても、そこで生きていけなければ意味ない。ってことは環境が大事。それから、環境教育。


I thought about it. But there are much more things I can do to save animals by working with their habitats than saving each animal’s life in a hospital. Even one life is being saved and released back to the nature there is no point if it cannot survive there. That is why I think that the environment is important. And so is education.

When I stayed at Mr. Bob’s organic farm in Canada, I realized that people’s lifestyle and consciousness are very important to keep the world sustainable. And I think that education plays a big role there as it forms how we think and behave.


だから、帰国してから大学で幼児教育の勉強をしたの。でも、どうも子供には興味ないなって気づいちゃて笑 農業がしたくなったから育苗園でバイトをして、次の年には動物病院で働いた。植物や動物を相手にしている時が一番幸せだったな。


So when I was back to Japan from Canada, I started studying pedagogy to become a primary school teacher but then I realized that I wasn’t so interested in children. I missed working with nature and animals. So I did a part time job at a nursery garden and next year I worked at an animal hospital for a year and some months. I felt happy when watering the plants or feeding the animals.

I quit the animal hospital after one year and some months as I did not like to prioritize pet owners’ will even if it was not good for the animals, and I wasn’t so interested in medical care. Then, I went back to the university and applied for the position for Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA). It fits with my interests in the wild life conservation and the environmental education.


>> やりたいことをやっていて、すごいなぁ。なんていうか、まっすぐだよね。

I admire your ability of taking actions. You do and quit staffs damn straight and follow what you feel for. I think that is so cool.


I think I am too messy. I only do what I want to do now. I am going to change that though, I should think a little bit deeper and further before taking actions, I think.

>> そう?考えすぎて動けないより、動けるほうがいいと思うけどな。コスタリカでの話をまた聞かせてね!

Well, I think it’s better doing than just thinking and wondering. I look forward to listening to your adventures in Costa Rica!


Aug 11, 2018. @白山

After meeting Masami, I watched a documentary film called “A BOLD PEACE” (2016). As you might already know, Costa Rica is one of the few and developed countries in the world which do not have an army. The film explains how and why Costa Rica does not have an army. As I understood, it was a clever way for them to cut the budget on the military and instead rely on the international law for the country’s security, then they could develop their welfare and education. I do not think Japan can take the same way as Costa Rica, but still, we should at act against wars. Costa Rica shows that it is possible to realize anything when politicians and citizens have a clear vision for what future we want to live in, take a decision and make efforts to get the reality closer to the ideal one.

コスタリカは、豊かな自然のある、軍隊のない国である。折しもまさみと話した数日後に、ドキュメンタリーA BOLD PEACE (2016)を観た。この映画は、どうして軍事大国アメリカと政情不安定な南米諸国に挟まれた人口480万人ばかりのコスタリカが軍を持たない決断に至ったのか(1948年12月1日のことだから、今年で70年目!)、どうやってそんなことが可能なのかを、歴史的に分かりやすく説明している。私はこの映画を観て、もっとコスタリカに行ってみたくなっちゃった。ぜひ多くの人に見てほしい映画。


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