Just 10 days ago, I celebrated my birthday. It’s nice to be home and to be with the family to celebrate your special day.
It’s been my practice to look back at the year that has passed (May 2014 to March 2015). Here are the highlights:
The first time I had a car accident.
I also had a chance to wear a yukata (it looks like a kimono but is worn during the summer and is much lighter and not as complicated to wear) for the first time
After a week of staying indoors, I got bored out of my wits. I was lucky enough to be invited by my friends in Kobe to spend the summer with them. I went to Minoh Waterfalls and enjoyed hiking.
We visited a flower shop famous for its orchids. It reminded me of my grandmother who loves orchids and has been growing them for years in her own garden. I just had to take a picture of the flowers so I can show her.
I enjoyed watching the Peace concert organized by the International Community Center in Ise.
I started to feel I’m making progress in building relationships at work. One of the teachers I worked with invited me to her dance performance.
To add to my list of many firsts, I was able to drive to my friend’s house for more than two hours. I finally met her baby and her family members. It was good to be able to attend a church in Japan with my family in Shiga.
I thought I’d be spending New Year’s Eve at home so I was pleased when my friend Satoko invited me and another ALT to her house. I enjoyed eating crab claws and nabe. It definitely beat staying home.
We then went to Ise Shrine to welcome the new year. Imagine my surprise when I learned how Japanese people celebrate New Year. There were no fireworks, no gun shots, no noise. It was even quieter than most evenings and the whole affair seemed serene.
For some time, I’ve been dreaming about going to Nara. So it was like an answered prayer when my friend suddenly invited me to a JET event. I decided to drive since there will be two of us and it will be cheaper to drive than to take the train. It was perfect because I didn’t have much money and I also needed to practice driving.
For one month, I lived with a friend from Seattle. I’m blessed to have very helpful and generous friends. At the same time, I learned about the challenges of having to move very often.
I love this month!
The kindest principal I’ve met and some of my co-teachers in Tamaru organized a gathering before spring break. He even gave me some snacks to take home to my family.
Now, who’s afraid of getting old?