Tattooing is the most misunderstood art form in Japan today. Looked down upon for centuries and rarely discussed in social circles, people with tattoos are outcasts in this country, banned from most public spaces such as beaches, bathhouses, and even gyms. Tattoos have an extensive history in Japan, and to truly understand the stigma behind them it is essential to be aware of their significance. The first records of tattoos...Read More
This post is also by Yada P.
“Ow! Why in the world did I bring heels!” utters Alice, leaning against the wall as we climb up the stairs. Her hair is pinned up, her make-up impeccable. I look down at my own red, three-inch, suede ones. They stuck out from the black and white flats in the crowd.
Carrying a briefcase and a backpack, everyone trudges to the different committee rooms. A nervous chatter fills the hall, a very unfitting sound considering the well-dressed suit and tie people. We had just come out of the morning assembly, and it was almost time for us to shine.
Hours of preparation were poured into these few hours, of researching and anticipating questions. But the feeling of unpreparedness still lingered. “Are the delegates ready to begin?” says the chair, as soon as every one of the delegates had sat down and opened up their laptops.
Cuba. Venezuela. Saudi Arabia. Singapore. The list goes on and on. Gawa, Alice, Russell, and I smile at each other. We’ve got a plan, but by the looks of the other delegates, they seem like they have their guards up, too.
A quick flip through the notes later, the conference begins. While some of the delegates sound sure and confident, others seem less competent in English. Every one of them carefully looking at each delegate; judging.
Then it’s my turn. How weird I must be, in my bright pink top and high heels, how dumb. I could almost hear the snickers barely reigned back in a mask of formality. Not one to be intimidated by the pairs of eyes watching me; I start.
The delegate of Vietnam…
Words get stuck in my throat, and I clear my throat to hide my hesitation. It was soon over though, and I got to sit down again.
What is Vietnam’s situation with domestic violence?
The question seems to spring out of nowhere from Cuba. Gawa and I stare at each other; we both forgot that one topic in the multi-faceted view of women’s rights. Two minutes tick by as Gawa and I flick frantically through the notes, nudging each other to make something up. Finally, we tell Cuba that we would discuss this later. Later, we would say that Vietnam’s domestic violence problems were like every other country’s and that we have a whole ministry dedicated to this advancement. Of course, all of this we make up from what little we know about the matter.
Debating and discussing, as a delegate gets easier as time passes. I start to get the hang of the conversation, how people respond, allies and enemies. I learn how to make up things and sound good when I don’t know what to say – how to debate and how to persuade the audience. Sometimes, there was a minor debate between two countries, but when we got down to the nitty gritty; we made a resolution in less than two hours.
Resolutions tucked under the chair’s arms, we all set out to the general assembly. Excited, yet nervous, we settle down. The tension between the delegates is pretty intense. The Chinese, Russians, and the French have the floor most of the time. The best moment for all of us would probably be the Iranian delegate. He was so Iran.
The clapping slowly dies out when the General Secretary has the floor. He is a witty chair. He thanks every one of us for participating in this event and gives “plants” as an award for the best delegates. Proudly, our fellow mates Hannah and Emma go onto the stage to get their awards for the best delegate in their committee.
It was the first time for us, and we had a limited amount of time to prepare ourselves. Yet, we did amazingly well and made TGS proud.
What was the highlight of the conference?
“The General Assembly…and how much everyone got into their roles.” – Rebecca
“When the delegate of France pointed out the lack of translators.” – Hudson
“Dressing up and acting like a boss. I liked achieving everything that our country wanted.” – David
“My highlight was the smaller meeting with UNESCO where we debated the resolutions, and Hannah owned everyone.” – Emma
“The whole conference as it was a great experience. Also meeting new people would probably be my other highlight.” – Pema
Would you participate in another MUN conference?
“In a heartbeat.” – Megan
“Of course. It was amazing!” – Anat
“Yes, it’s good practice for participating in real conferences that make a difference. It is also a good reflection on my strengths and weaknesses.” – Yada
“Yes. I have to get that award.” – Cameron