I love swimming! Except i don’t think i’m really good at it. Swimming was our PE class! Lots of fun and new friends!
I had prepared some swimwear for swimming class today… A pair of underwear, shorts and a towel, like in the islands! Ryu also gave me his goggles for that class. I was also wondering if I was allowed to make it splash!
There was a particular procedure that we had to follow before going into the pool, stretch routines, and showers. We had to quickly rinse ourselves before getting into the pool. The showers were freezing! Luckily the pool is on the rooftop of the gym, so that the sun can warm me up!
Getting into the pool and having a bit of free time to enjoy the pool. We had water fights, and they taught me how to squirt water with my hands! It was fun while it lasted, but after that, it was down to class.
We had to swim back and forth doing different styles of swimming. It was fun to swim with my friends but it was also VERY tiring! I don’t have a lot of stamina so i get tired real quick. Most of them were very fit and could easily swim to the end and back without being tired. I could only swim there and half way back full speed, then get tired! Luckily i wasn’t the only one that was tired! Some of my friends just got too tired and started walking!
After all these swimming lessons, they had races and MAN, most of them know how to swim! Well they have been doing it for about 5 years but still! These guys could clear the pool in 30 seconds! They would just boost through it!
When we finished swimming, we had to go through the cold showers again. I was actually glad that it was cold this time because I was very tired and hot. The showers cooled me down.
I really enjoyed swimming lessons with my friends! It was very refreshing and fun. Thank you Jishukan, my friends, and teachers!
The first time I went to basketball, I had a lot of thoughts floating around in my mind. I thought things like “I’m probably not even on their level”, “Would they want me to play?”, “Would they even want me to be there?”, “I’m Trrrasssshhhh!!”.
All those thoughts were put away when I met Hiroya. Hiroya was very helpful, not just in basketball, but at school as well! I met hiroya on my first day because he was in my home room. He is very kind and a good friend! Hiroya took me to basketball and introduced me to the team. That's where i met Ren, who is a premier player for Jishukan. He is really tall, and also very friendly! Both Hiroya and Ren made sure that I was having fun at Basketball.
The basketball team usually starts off with a quick stretch routine, which stretches almost every muscle in your body. Most of these stretches were weird at first, but I got used to it. After the routine, we would get into basketball drills that focus on main fundamentals. I thought that these drills were pretty easy to complete, except they were all tiring!
We then had a 2v2 scrimmage, and that's where the coach actually saw me playing. He thought i played well so he put me straight onto their starting team. I was kinda nervous because i didn’t know how they played, since i’m more of a freestyle player, and their team is very structured. As we got ready to play the game, coach came up to me and said to just play my own game. So i did, I went straight for contact! I would try every way to get rebounds, layups and drives. I ended up doing very well and the coach was impressed… Thankfully!
The coach wanted me to play more games with the starting team after training so that we could get used to playing together, and get to know each other! I had friendly 1v1s with the players and had a lot of fun with them.
Little did i know, it was 6pm, and Ryu picked me up from basketball to get ready for the bus. Thank you to the Basketball team for being friendly and helpful!
Science in Jishukan is VERY interesting and fun! We had done some very cool experiments and ones with a BANG!
We were experimenting with gases for the first part, we experimented with a substance that was put into a tube, and left in a bowl of warm water. When we took it out of the bowl of water, we used a lighter and lit the top of the tube which made a loud pop! I don’t think our tube worked, but it… Worked! Instead of popping, a quiet bang and small fire lit upon our tube! I guess it could be called a mini explosion! It wasn’t supposed to happen like that but it was pretty funny when it did turn out like that!
Another experiment we did, was playing with fire, literally! We got given different substances that looked like salt, water, and powder. These substances were mixed together and heated. It was heated to a certain point then put into a cupcake wrapper to sit. We then lit the substance and out came a coloured flame! Our flame was Red but had a hint of blue with it. Every other group had different colours, so we brought them all together into a circle. I lit them up one by one and accidentally burnt my hand a little bit! It was worth the small pain to watch all these flames light up!
To finish the class, our teacher had come up with an experiment of putting gas into a plastic bag. The plastic bag ended up full of gas, and he pulled out his lighter. At this point, i knew that this was going to be a little dangerous but cool experiment. The teacher put the lighter in the bag and lit his fire. Nothing happened… BANG!! As the plastic bag was only a couple metres away from my face exploded with a loud Bang! It felt like all my internal organs shook inside of me!
I really enjoyed science class and the different experiments that were performed! Thank you to my friends that made this experience fun!
Back to school, I was very interested how their normal school days would be. Most classes were in Japanese so most of the time i would just look around or think about stuff, but my friends were very helpful! They would try their best to translate the work so that i wasn’t bored, even though i enjoyed most of my time at school!
At lunches, we would bring our tables together and eat lunch. My homestay mother had a big lunch prepared for me everyday at school. She also always had a little note saying something like “enjoy your lunch”, “have a nice day”. I appreciated those small notes! Me and my friends would always talk at lunch, so we had interesting conversations.
After school there were usually club activities, so i would go to the basketball club, i will talk about basketball in another blog!
What i enjoyed the most at school, was meeting people and making new friends! Apparently i was popular at school, but i didn’t really notice it. I still liked that i was though, because my goal is to be rich and famous! I really liked how people would go out of their way to help me get comfortable with whatever I was doing!
Thank you Jishukan!
On our day off, my family took me out to Yokohama, where there was a huge shopping mall with an ANIME shop! I like watching anime it was cool to see a lot of products of the anime that i watched. My friends also liked anime so i bought them a thing or two from the shop!
After spending money on cartoons, my family took my to the cup noodle factory, which was a factory full of various cup noodles! I was amazed at how there was a whole factory/museum dedicated to noodles!
We also went through to make our own cup noodles, where we could decorate the cup however we wanted to. We could then have noodles in that cup, and choose our toppings!
We had lunch at the noodle factory, where it was basically full of different noodles, the place was themed like a night market, i thought that it was pretty cool.
After lunch, we went to an arcade where we played a ton of games, tried our luck, and failed. There were a lot of crane games that i’m pretty sure were rigged! Me and Ryu competed against each other in nearly all the games we played. It was very fun!
On our way home, Me and Ryu stopped at the train station to go to the Tanabata Festival, but that's for another blog! Thank you to my family for taking me on these trips!
Another trip to another Shrine! Except this one was in the center of Japan, nearly on top of Japan.
There were a TON of stairs to get up to the cable car which actually takes up to MORE stairs! It was very tiring but in my opinion very worth it.
At the top was a very chill place, and another shrine. There was also a very nice view of Japan since we were very high up on the mountain. It was kind of weird seeing a lot of the people that had walked up here, because the majority of them were old! I had no idea how they even thought that walking up all those stairs were a good activity for them! They were wearing layers of clothes which looked very hot, but look at them, they weren't even sweating!
After having a breather, we were taken into a lounge, where we studied a bit of japanese history, and had a look at old japanese treasures.
We then had a look around the mountain and apparently there were bears! I kinda wanted to see a bear, but sadly, i didn’t. On the way back down, we saw another shrine with a lot more people around it. The place was very nice and surrounded with nature.
I enjoyed the trip! Getting back to school, i was very tired, so i just chilled out in our group classroom. Thank you to the teachers that looked after us on that trip!
First day of school was very interesting. We got to school by car, Ryu’s dad drove us to the train station and we trained to Chigasaki. We met up with Yu, Kantaro along the way. They are Ryu’s good friend. We then bussed from Chigasaki station to Jishukan. On the fifth floor, was our classroom.
Walking in to the classroom, i just see everyone staring at me. I didn’t really care much, that they were all staring at me, it’s just the thought that are they staring at me because they like me or that they dislike me. Mitsuki (one of my friends now) approached me and introduced himself to me. He was very kind. He was really interested in my likes and dislikes and there are a lot of things we can relate and talk about. Other boys started coming over, and after a few minutes, everyone ended up crowding over me. It felt great, that everyone was interested in me. There were a lot of students that introduced themselves to me. It's also hard to keep track of their names because i met so many students, and it’s hard to remember which names go with the right faces. Most times I feel bad that i can’t remember their names.
Me and the other girls were introduced to the school and got taken on a school tour. As i walked around the school, there were a lot of students and teachers coming over to meet me. At this point, i felt pretty famous! Being famous is one of my biggest goals, so it feels good to get a glimpse of that. The school is very big. There are a lot of rooms for students, there are different floors, for different grades, for example. Grade 1 is on the 1st floor, etc.
As my first day went past, I had made a lot of friends, and got familiar with the school, on my way back home, we took a bus to the train station and trained back to our station, where I was picked up and taken home.
Again, I would like to thank you for reading and the support!
My homestay family is very welcoming and kind. When I arrived at jishukan my homestay family was there. I was excited and a bit nervous just because i wouldn’t know how to communicate effectively with them. It turned out, Ryunosuke (my buddy) knew how to speak a bit of english. He made communication 2x easier for me because he could translate most of the words.
Ryu’s mum is very kind and helpful. She does everything she can to make sure that i'm alright. Ryu's father is very kind and very curious about our culture. Ryu has 2 younger brothers one is 5 years old. He is very energetic and funny. The other is shy but i’ll get to know him soon! Ryu himself is kind and helpful. He tries his best to translate words that i can't understand. I am very grateful to them for making me feel welcome and for being very helpful.
I am also very thankful to Aorere and Novotel for blessing me with this opportunity to experience Japan! Thank you!
Kamakura is a famous spot on Japan where there are a lot of shrines and statues of Buddha. Ono sensei took our group over to Kamakura to have a look. It was very interesting to see the different buildings, shrines, nature, and statues.
On our way to the shrines, we came across the Torii gate, which is the gate that you enter to get to the shrines. Through the gate was a long walk to actually get to the shrine, but it was surrounded by nice trees.
Before going up into the shrines, We had to wash our hands with a certain set of instructions. It was fairly easy, mostly because i already learnt what we needed to do, but Ono sensei reminded us what to do.
Entering the shrines where a lot of people were praying, There were more set of instructions that we needed to follow. First, we needed to give offering, which is throwing a coin into a box. I gave 1 yen because i had too much 1 yens in my wallet, and because the 1 yen was very light and plastic, when i threw the coin, the coin barely made it into the box. After throwing the coin, we had to bow twice, clap twice, pray for a couple seconds, then bow again.
After looking around the place, we saw a lot of nice scenery and nature. Everything were just “in the right places” and it was nice to look at.
After that we went to see the giant Buddha statue. We were able to go in the statue, but all that was inside was the statues history.
My trip to Kamakura was again, very interesting and different to what i’ve seen. I enjoyed it! Thank you to the people who made this happen!