Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Hanging with the boys... and a dog, too.

Last Friday, one of my recently graduated JHS students called me up (he received my number from his mother's mutual friend) asking me if I wanted to join him and his friends for yakiniku (korean style BBQ). I said yes since I absolutely loved talking to this kid (he's one of the few students who makes the effort to speak to me in only English.) 

So I showed up only to see a bunch of my other graduated boys. Luckily, I knew these other kids really well. They're are bunch of jokers. I'll definitely miss them.

 Tomoki, on the far right, is the kid that called me over.

 The family dog. He's sooooo cute, but a hyper little thing.

 Isn't he adorable? I asked him to pose with the cabbage still on his face.

During this shoot, they kept playing with my hair.

Friday, March 23, 2012

T minus five days

It's moving time!


On March 27th, I will be moving up north to a city in Fukuoka prefecture. The city is about a two hours drive from where I currently live.

I'm really looking forward to the move because I'll be living in a more urban area; where everything is in walking distance. Also, Fukuoka City will only be a 40 minute train ride away!!

I will be living in the city, but my schools are in a other town that is about 18 minutes south by train. I don't mind that at all since it'll be a nice break away from city life.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

It's time.

 A letter from two 5th graders. I can read and completely understand what they wrote. Elementary students are not that aquatinted with English as junior high schoolers are.

 Messages and flowers from students and co-workers.

Photo book and gifts from co-workers.

Messages and flowers from students and co-workers.

Hey, it's been awhile. I've been pretty busy getting ready for the big move. As I mentioned earlier, I will be moving at the end of this month. For the past few weeks, I have been saying my "goodbyes" to my schools. I wasn't expecting it to be this tough. I've taught at these school for 2.5 years and I've gotten extremely close with my students and co-workers. I've cried during my last days at some of my schools while giving my goodbye speeches. Seeing my students and some of my co-workers cry as well was really touching.  I have received so many flowers and messages from my students and staff members. I'll never, ever forget the time that I've spent at these schools. They were absolutely THE BEST!

I still have three more work days left at two JHS. This Friday, however,  I will be attending the graduation ceremony at my favorite ES.  Can't wait!

Sunday, March 4, 2012

exploring my backyard: miyazaki's coastline

Nichinan, Miyazaki 

So, a couple weeks ago, I drove down to the coastal area of Nichinan to visit (re-visit) the area. You may remember that I visited Aoshima back in January.  Well, the first photo on this entry is the view of Aoshima from higher grounds. The red tori gate is easily noticeable. It was a really nice drive along the coastline. Thankfully, the weather on this day was sunny and very warm. I took a break at the rest point and bought a mango flavored sherbet. Miyazaki prefecture is known nationally in Japan for its mangos. And, your eyes aren't fooling you... that is shrimp flavored sherbet you see written there. 

Here's a little random encounter I had at the rest stop. As I was eating my ice cream while looking out at the ocean, four college aged looking guys came to my area. I overheard them saying how beautiful the area was and their desire to take a photo with all four of them in it. So I went up to the guys and said I'd be happy to take their photo. These guys were really happy that I offered to help. Hearing their "thank yous" in English was really cute. So, I used one of the guys' cellphone and took their picture... mind you, I was still holding my ice cream cone with my left hand. After the picture taking, we talked a bit with them asking me a bunch of questions like where I'm from, yadda, yadda, yadda. I don't know... whenever I tell Japanese people that I'm an English teacher, their reply is almost always kakkoi/cool!! Well, I do think I'm a rather awesome teacher, uh huh.

Anyways, I made quite a few stops on my drive along the coastal area to take photos because the area was just so beautiful. It's times like these that I'm grateful that I have a car or else I wouldn't have been able to leisurely take in the picturesque views. Later, I made my way to the Sun Messe Nichinan "theme park" area. Here, there are seven rather large moai statues. These replicas were built as a symbol of friendship between Japan and Easter Island. With Easter Island being a UNESCO World Heritage Site, there are imprints of various UNESCO sites listed at the Sun Messe Nichinan premise. 

My little adventure doesn't stop here. I also visited a shrine, which I'll talk about next time. 

Thanks for visiting!