Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Part 2: Onsen and Japanese Temple

Inside Bath
Part 2


We went to the Shiratori Onsen in Ebino.

Pictures courtesy of the internet :D Because for obvious reasons I can't take pictures inside myself.

It was pretty embarrassing and I kept my small towel covering myself the whole time (except when I was in the water and you can't take your towel in there).

There was an indoor and outdoor bath and a sauna as well as a jigoku "hell" sauna (it's just really hot, and it's muddy water so you don't actually go in it). I didn't go to the hell sauna though, although I wish I had because I wonder what it looks like in person.

So yeah, after this we headed to Kobayashi to go a Japanese temple (they were having some sort of event, only we didn't get to stay for the fun part since Kobayashi is pretty far from Miyazaki (the city) and we had to head back.

Japanese Temple.

Chanted some prayers.
Listened to old people talk.
Bought some stuff at the bazaar.
Outside Bath
Yeah, that's pretty much it :D

Here's a short badly done vlog about all this.
Starting with Part 1 (Aoshima & Haniwa) and then some temple chanting footage with a Korean song in the background. An American in Japan with Korean music. Yeah, it's just so international :D

Monday, September 19, 2011

Out and About... (Part 1: Aoshima + Heiwadai)

Peace Tower a horrible blog title, but oh well :D

2 weeks ago I went my my host family to Aoshima, Heiwadai, an Onsen, and a temple.


Heiwadai Park 平和台公園

First we went to Heiwadai and saw the Peace Tower. It's made of different stones from all over the world.

If you stand on the stone in the picture to the right and clap your hands, you can heard a "Biin Biin" sound. I think it's the echo of the clapping resounding in/off something.
After poking aroung the tower we went to the nearby Haniwa Garden. It's full of statues such as the one in the picture below.
Creepy Dancing Woman
Me and my host mom


Aoshima is an island in Miyazaki. It's pretty small, but has a shrine on it and you can see the famous Oni no Sentakuita (Demon's Washboard) and there is a beach and lots of touristy shops on the land before the island, if that makes sense.

You have to cross a bridge to get onto the island.
The wind was really strong that day too so people's umbrellas and hats were flying all over.

Oni no Sentakuita

Shrine Entrance's Torii Gate

Aoshima Jinja
Throw money in here and pray
To be continued...

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Culture Festival, Sports Festival, 2-B Class Gathering, etc.

We had our Culture Festival last week. It's called the Ootori-sai (鵬祭) literally Phoenix Festival.It's not like the festivals you see in dramas. At our festival, all the students go to the community culture hall, which is luckily very close to my house so I just walked, and we watch performances.

The first day was the choir competition, each class sung a song, my class sang "Kimi to Mita Umi", I sang alto which was pretty hard >_<

We watched the dance club dance to High School Musical and one song from Burlesque, the Acting Club put on a play, 3-E put on a very hilarious play, some speeches, musical performances, and had some free time to go see performances, and see club exhibitions (art club, picture club, Japanese history club, etc.).

It was 2 days long, and the 2nd day was the best one, we saw the plays and had free time that day.
The sports festival was held at the Sports Park which was farther away so my host parents drove me.

My team (Ao-dan; Blue group) won! Ki-dan (Yellow group) won cheering. Because of that our teacher bought us all drinks the next week at school :3

I took tons of video footage so I will make a vlog soon about the Ootori-sai and Sports festival~!

But because the Sports Festival was on a Saturday we had Monday off, so our class 2-B got together and went to a Viking at Aeon (pronounced Ee-on, spelled Ion in jp), the big mall in Miyazaki. Out of 38 of us 23 went. Viking in Japan = All you can eat buffet. Which I already knew, so there was no confusion XD
I went by bus since my host parents were at work, and Aeon is pretty far away to walk or bike to.

The day of the Sports Festival was actually an AFS orientation, only I didn't go because I wanted to participate in the Sports Festival instead. The other exchangers went to the zoo and bowling. But after the festival I stayed at my LP's house for the night. And the next day I went shopping with my LP and her daughter who is 19. We went to Shimamura, Pura Vida, Miyako City (a small mall), and ate lunch at Joyful.
I also ran into a classmate at Joyful.

Also had my first Shodo (Japanese Calligraphy) class this week. The ALT at my school came in to show the shodo teacher the shodo we was working on, and I had to help translate for him because my Japanese is better than his. All the kids in back me were whispering "How cool!" when I started speaking English. They all think English is the coolest thing ever. Sometimes I'll put on a really bad American accent on my Japanese to amuse them. lol

And remembering names is not hard at all, I know all the girls in my class, first and last name, which I remembered within a week (the print out I received from my teacher was helpful). And I know all the guys last names at least. Also everyone who comes up to me and says "Hi!" etc, etc. and tells me their name I remember too :D I'm very good with names though.

I take all the classes my classmates take. The class I least understand is Math. The class I understand most is Biology, especially since I've already taken Bio Acc in 9th grade and AP Bio in 11th grade (although I can say I payed no attention in AP Bio).
I'm not including English, Shodo, or Computer in this btw, which I classes that I of course understand.

This is getting pretty long so I'll end it here!

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Ame ame fure fure...Kyuudou!

It's been really rainy here lately. A typhoon is coming soon!But for the most part of the past week it was clear. Only it's funny because it seems to be clear and sunny only over our school, which sucks because we have practice for the Sports Festival (Taiku-sai) everyday, so we're out in the hot sun all day.

We also have group practice. There are 4 groups, Red (Aka-dan), Yellow (Ki-dan), White (Shiro-dan), and Blue (Ao-dan). I'm in the Blue Group. We have been learning 2 dances for the past week. GReeeeN's UNITY and AKB48's Everyday, Kachuusha (<3) which I also took video's of as well. Only I only got the last part of the GReeeeN one because I thought I was recording, but my camera was still on standby ;__;

I also joined the Kyuudou-bu (Kyuudou Club)! I didn't have any intentions of joining it when I first came, but it's really fun so I'm glad I did!
Inside the Kyudo-jo
Arrows (矢 ya)

Bows (弓 yumi)

 One of my senpai's drew this :3
It says 'Welcome to Kyudo-bu!  Welcome Safya'

Lol, but he didn't finish before I got there so Hello Kitty was half colored in and I added the stars and blue to the US flag myself XD Oh and the 峯岸 pointing towards Hello Kitty says "Minegishi". She's my AKB oshimen (Minegishi Minami aka Miichan) :3 We were talking about AKB the day before~

 I also went to an AFS orientation last week (where I got my cell phone :D)

On the way to Nichinan
(Taken from the inside of a moving car.)

 The 3 in the middle (including myself) are the Miyazaki exchange students (except for one girl who couldn't make it).

Today we're going to Aoshima and tomorrow we're going to a temple.