Only yesterday, I have made another step towards my goal of becoming a good resident of Japan. Behold, ladies and gentlemen: A random citizen of Kyoto!

You’re not getting it, are you? Well, yesterday I have received a letter from the mayor of Kyoto (or at least his office) containing the “Kyoto Citizen’s Social Interactions Survey”.

letter attached to the surveyI am one of only 3000 citizens of Kyoto that were randomly chosen to take part in the survey. It has around 100 questions touching different areas: Actual Social Experience in 27 different fields like environment, human rights, culture, pedestrian friendly city, housing; Importance of Kyoto city policies with respect to the above, and personal interest in city administration. The final question is especially interesting: “Do you think you are happy now?”

Well, yes for sure, thank you! No matter where I lived before, I was never deemed random enough to be asked to take part in such a survey. I cannot help wondering how random it really is though. The envelope contained four sets of questionnaires, in Japanese, English, Korean, and Chinese, which is something that is very rare indeed in Japan. The question is whether there are really so many foreigners living in Kyoto that a survey sent to a random one out of 500 citizens would warrant such a measure? But then again, I was never good at statistics…