Practice English Speaking&Listening with: What is Van Life Like in Japan?

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S: Hi everyone! Today we're going to do a video about our friend, Yohei.

Now, why are we doing a video about Yohei?

Because he's one of the coolest people we've ever met in our lives M: Yup!

M: He snowboards. He surfs. He's an amazing photographer for star chefs, soccer players, and models!

S: He's also a carpenter, an amazing dresser, a great singer,

and he does all of this while living a very full life in his awesome van

M: But not just any van! No, no! An amazing, custom van

S: So today, we're going to give you just a little pinch- a little dash of Yohei

and his van life because we think it's really inspiring M: Yup S: And it's very different from what's normal in Japan

So come, let's check out what Yohei is all about

Y: Welcome! M: Thank you!

All: Tada!

M: Simon is jumping in the van with Yohei where he might sing karaoke without me

S: It's time for "caraoke"!

S: Maybe! M: And then we're going to head to a nice park of some kind and check out Yohei's van!

S: Okay!

Y: Let's go to (the) van tour

This is my office

I always work like this

Next, I'll show you my closet!

Go over there

M: It's still cool every time! (laughs)

Y: This is my closet

When I work, (I wear something) like this

And then, when I cook

Like this

When I go (to a) party

M: Oh my god

Y: Like this (Simon laughing) M: I love it

You know Guns N' Roses? Y: Oh, yes, I know M: Slash (Yohei laughing)

(Martina's guitar impression?)

Y: Yeah, but I- I can't- M: Can't play the guitar? Y: Yeah, I can't play (the) guitar. My job is videography and photography

If I shoot something, my fashion is like this

M: So no flip-flops? (Yohei laughing) Y: Yeah, long pants and shoes

M: Custom closet Y: Custom closet, yes

This is very important for me. I'm homeless so... (laughs)

I should keep good flavour(?) M: Ahh (Yohei laughs)

M: And is this for steaming? Y: Ah, yes! Yes, steaming. M: Okay

Y: Okay~ Let's go to the back(?)

M: Supplies for photography? Y: Yes. These are camera tools (equipment) and a drone

This is a kitchen table

M: Okay, so this is your kitchen table Y: Yes M: How did you get this?

Y: I created it by myself M: Really? Y: Yeah (laughs) M: So measuring and cutting it and... wow, that's amazing

Y: But, I made mistakes many times so I try again later M: Try again and again

Y: This is a surfboard

M: Juicer? Y: Yes, cold press juicer M: Cold press juicer, Sodastream, hand blender

S: Sous Vide!

Y: Generally in the winter, it's cold outside so I keep the temperature of food warm with this

M: Okay, question! Where do you sleep? There's no room, where do you sleep?

Y: Can you go there? M: Yes

Y: This is my bedroom!

M: Yohei, is this a table? Y: Yes!

M: Ahh, I see! I see what you're doing

What's crazy about this is that when you think about what you can put into a van and what you usually see online about van life

People usually limit themselves to the actual size of their van

While Yohei kind of layers everything

Like, when I was watching him take out the chef's table, it didn't come this way.

It wasn't like "Well, I can't fit this in". It's all compact

It's like putting together an Ikea table on the fly. It's such a great idea, like,

This- How did this all fit in there?

Yohei, is it "binchan"? Y: Binchōtan (white charcoal)

M: Can you use it anywhere in Japan or only at a park? Y: Only at a campsite

M: So, Yohei, you travel with both of these in your van? Y: Yes M: Wow!

(distorted chorus of Martina calling Yohei/asking questions)

Yohei's in the middle of making food and I've been asking a million distracting questions

All right, I'm gonna try out this slide. I have a feeling that I'm gonna hurt myself (in a chipmunk voice) let's see what happens!

S: This looks like it's gonna be a bad idea...

M: Can I tell you this is, uh, it's pretty wildly high up there

All right, let's go!

S: Don't hurt yourself, girl

M: Wee~eeee... Wee...

Aww... Stopped halfway...

S: We're trying to film a documentary here

Martina's going on the slide

M: It was so much fun~

S: Uhmejing~! (Amazing)

M: Where did you learn to cook? Y: Myself M: Self-cooking? Y: And eat

Eating is the best way of learning food

M: The only way to do it!

Y: This morning I made this M: Wow!

M: Oh man!

Yohei, this is gorgeous. Look at this! It's amazing!

That's why you're a van-lifer, 'cause this is awesome

You talk about someone who's from North America and they're like "Oh, I live in a van and you know, you're on the road and this is my view"

Everyone's like "Oh man, #goals"

But he (Yohei) was saying it's looked down upon in Japan

I can get that because people are more concerned about having a house and putting stuff in it

You know, you can make this food there so Yohei's trying to show that you can still have a life like that while living in a van

And obviously, you can see it's a lot of work for him to set up his kitchen and everything

But, it's completely possible for him to do. He can have his great food and his amazing views

He can stay in shape, he can surf, he can catch the fresh snow

I mean, that's pretty damn cool to me. Don't you think Simon?

He's staring off into the sunset S: There's this kid with his terrible slide (Martina laughing)

What I find weird is, I think Yohei is the coolest person I've met in Japan but that's just for my sensibilities

If he's not cool to other Japanese people, you're like "How could you not think that this is the coolest guy you've ever seen?"

He surfs, he snowboards, he cooks, he sings, he lives out of a van, he's got a great fashion style

That's tremendously respectable! I don't know why he isn't the super oshare (fashionable) if there's a word for that

M: They're all like (chanting Yohei) S: There's regular oshare and there's super oshare

M: I guess it's way more work! It's way more work so you're putting your heart and your soul into something that you think is important to you

Like, sure, you could just cook in your home in your kitchen that is just there for you or you could say "I live in a van BUT I'm still gonna make good food"

If it's harder work that means it should be respected more, don't you think?

S: Is it that we think he's cool because we also don't own a house?

We've just been travelling from country to country and not living anywhere set

Is that why Yohei resonates with us?

We too are homeless! M: No, I think it's cool- S: The whole world is essentially homeless

M: Oh no, he's getting into one of those- S: None of us own anything

Possession is an illusion M: (in Meemers' voice) What about me? S: Freedom is all that matters!

M: All right, are you hungry? S: Yes! M: Oh, he's hungry, that's what's happening here.

Y: Are you ready to eat? S: I'm always ready to eat! (Yohei laughing)

Y: Okay!

S: Let me just say when Yohei said he was gonna cook something for us and we discussed the scene of us eating outside

I was expecting paper plates and plastic cups! M: Hot dogs maybe

But this... is better than anything I own in my house (Martina laughing)

Honestly, we eat off of Daiso plates at home M: Daiso, Daiso, Daiso, and Daiso!

S: I think Yohei might have the right answer here! Buy good plates, don't buy a house

M: Wow! I mean, I guess it's gotta be a pretty cool feeling to be able to pick up and move your home wherever you want

We often talk about how we're, like, jealous of turtles and stuff like that

Do we? Does anyone talk about being jealous of turtles? I don't know

S: I don't understand why people have agreed unanimously

We all wake up in the morning and go to work

Instead of sleeping until they're ready to wake up and then go to work in the afternoon!

What's with all this morning bullshit?

Dan: No, it looks great!

Perfect. Yeah, yeah, look at each other

M: There's a newcomer because he (the hyena) ate the last ones

Makes me feel a little scared!

We're not even in the cave, this is so beautiful!

S: We are in beautiful Akiyoshi (Cave) in Yamaguchi and we're gonna have our friend Yohei guide us into a cave

Y: Let's go! S&M: Let's go! M: We're gonna find dragons!

S: I am losing my shit. I'm not overreacting here. This is... I've never been in a cave like this before

I don't even think I've been in a cave before! I've been in a garage

M: It's a really- This is- I don't wanna sound like romantic poetry like how Yohei talked about the feelings he had when he was on a cliff

This is what I meant... A cave is like the reverse version

it's this feeling of awe at nature

S: My mom always uses the word "imponujące" which is supposed to be really impressive but it sounds heavier

This to me is very "imponujące"

Yohei was born around here so, for him, this is very normal but I'm a city boy

(Yohei chuckling) Very much a city boy!

This is amazing. I feel like I'm in a video game and I'm about to fight the final boss

Sephiroth, I'm coming for your bitch ass

S: Oopsie doodle, I forgot to turn on the mic!

S: Go Yohei, It's ya birthday! Go Yohei! Go, go! (x3) Go (x4)

You got this, girl!

M: We just had an absolutely beautiful experience with this gorgeous cliff in Yamaguchi

With a shrine that I always wanted to visit

Look at that! It goes all the way down and I built that ladder and I did it!

I went down the stairs and I came up the stairs

And I'm really happy I did it. I was scared and didn't think I could do it but I did it. Feels great!

S: I'm not sure if you can hear me but we have to expain this

All: Yay!

S: This is great! Instead of just putting your money in a box like regular people, they're making you throw it into this really high basket

And people are just staying here forever

Watch as Martina, Dan, and Yohei try for a few minutes to get it in

S: Aw, Ducky! (Dan laughing)

S: Oh, my hand is so sore!

S: All right, come on, girl! Almost! (Simon laughing) Oh! (Dan laughing) D: Desperate now (S&D laughing)

S&D: Oh!

S&D: Oh, ayy!

M: Traditional Canadian dance! S: No! (M&Y laughing) M: Absolutely no!

Okay! Yamaguchi prefecture is amazing! We have had just a totally awesome time

We didn't know what to expect from Yamaguchi prefecture but we were completely blown away!

S: We honestly just came here because we wanted to hang out with Yohei 'cause he has a really cool life

And a message that I think is worth sharing. Especially as us two city folk who have been living in major cities for a big part of our lives.

Coming out to the countryside isn't something we expected to have this much fun doing!

But Yamaguchi is full of amazing fun, and great food, and beauty and wonder.

And if you've got good friends and you're open for adventure, you could live a very fulfilling life outside of what's normally accepted

You don't have to live someone else's idea of normal

I hope we could inspire that in you the way Yohei inspires that in us!

Thank you for watching. See you next week with more silly videos!

(Both play-screaming)

S: Yohei has just made his own YouTube channel and he just made his first YouTube video! I'm so happy for him!

Please click here, go on over to his video. Check it out and leave him a really nice comment

And if you want to see some extra scenes from our trip to Yamaguchi with Yohei, you can click on the link here and have a few more laughs

See you later!

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