Week 1

I’ve only been in Japan for a week and I can’t believe the amount of activities and traveling around Japan we’ve already done so far! I’ll be honest, I was extremely nervous about multiple things such as: traveling to a different country with people I barely knew, being in a country where I couldn’t speak or read the language and not knowing anything about my surroundings.  Now that a week has gone by, my worries are completely gone! The Japanese people I have met so far are the most humbling and respectful people I have ever met, which makes me feel very welcomed. I also couldn’t have asked for a better group to go to Japan with and I truly believe we are turning into one big happy family. Anyways, my time here in Japan has been the best life-changing experience I have ever been through and I’d like to show you all what we have done so far…

This is the share house we are staying at in Matsuyama. It is quite interesting to live with other strangers and took some time adjusting to it.

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We rented bicycles to help us get around Matsuyama and it is so fun! I haven’t ridden a bike in so long and it brings back many great memories.

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The first activity we did was rice harvesting. We helped the farmers dry the rice grains in the sun to help make the rice sweeter.

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The next day we did a radiation lab at Ehime University where we tested the amount of radiation in different objects such as stone slabs from places all over the world.

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The same day we went to Matsuyama Castle which had the most amazing view of Matsuyama ever!

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A few days later we visited the Hiroshima Peace Park and Museum which was very emotional and depressing for me. It was hard to see all the damage and destruction the Japanese people went through. It felt really weird being an American and knowing that the US caused this devastation to them.

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After feeling like the worst people ever, we went to Miyajima Island (Deer Island) to lift our spirits.

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We also went to the Itsukushima shrine and saw its beautiful torii gate.

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Last but not least, today we went to the Ikata Power Plant which was mind-blowing to see. I can’t believe there are 47 of these that exist in Japan! I am very happy that I decided to take this class because I knew nothing about nuclear power. Now I am very educated and understand the pros and cons of the subject.

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So far I have fallen in love with Japan and I can’t believe my trip is already half way over! I will definitely be taking advantage of the rest of my stay here in Matsuyama. Up next will be my homestay experience as well as finishing up the rest of our classes and preparing to leave this beautiful country.

Day 1: Heading to Japan!

miranda blog1For someone who has never traveled outside of the United States (besides Canada but I don’t really count that), I was really anxious and eager to travel to Japan. I could not wrap my head around the fact that the first flight was 9 hours, and then we had a 4 hour layover in Tokyo before we finally had our last 1.5 hour flight to Matsuyama. Nonetheless, the whole travel experience was a lot easier than expected! It may be because I slept a lot on the plane, but the flight went faster than I was anticipating, which I was very happy about.

The food on the plane was amazing! I will create a separate post towards the end of my trip to show all the meals I had eaten. I also enjoyed tons of free music and movies on the plane which kept me very entertained for the entire flight. I didn’t even use my laptop, iPad or iPhone throughout the whole flight. When I finally touched the humid and hot weather I was expecting in Japan, I could not wait for all the experiences and learning opportunities I was about to endure.