I’m in beautiful, (sometimes) sunny Omaezaki in Shizuoka Prefecture! For those wondering where that is, it’s this little cape jutting our in to the Pacific. On the side closest to the house I’m staying there’s beautiful, open ocean, and on the other side is a bay over which you have an amazing view of Mount Fuji on clear days.
Unfortunately, I left my camera cord somewhere in Tokyo, so I can’t post any pictures right now. However, I’ll hopefully be getting a new cord this weekend, so stay tuned. It’s really, really gorgeous here. It’s pretty much the middle of nowhere, I haven’t seen a single restaurant within walking or biking distance of my house, and that makes me love it even more. It’s the complete opposite of New York, which was kinda the idea when I was deciding where to go.
My hosts, John and Miyuki, are awesome people. They run a small English school with two locations, and I’ve been teaching classes for three weeks now. The students are every age imaginable — our youngest is three years old, and our oldest is almost 60. The classes are small, and very individualized for the students needs. The class activities range from art projects for the little ones (I taught them how to make Valentines this week), to pure conversation for the more advanced adults.
The thing we’re working on right now is Happyokai, a big show we’ll be putting on in the middle of March. All the students have either a speech or a skit (in English, of course) that they’re working on memorizing and perfecting. The acts are everything from traditional Japanese folk tales like Momotaro (peach boy) to one 13 year old boy who wrote a speech about his perfect woman. They’re all working very hard, and it’s so fun to be helping them.
I’m so excited that I came in time for Happyokai. As you may know, I’ve spent the past 5 or so summers working at Creative Theatrics day camp, so I’ve been using everything I’ve learned there to help the kids remember their lines, have fun on stage, and get over their stage fright. It turns out, teaching theater is pretty much the same whether the students speak English or not.
In my spare time I’ve been going for long bike rides along the beach and exploring the area. Yesterday morning I worked at the community center day care with Miyuki. We played with a group of 2-3 year old kids while their moms took a class on how to make miso. They were beyond adorable, and although I think they were wary of the white girl at first, by noon they were fighting over who got to hold my hand, and treating me to an imaginary feast of onigiri, curry rice, and all their favorite foods.
Tomorrow I’ll be moving to John and Miyuki’s other house. I’ve always wanted to live completely on my own, and since I’ll be moving to Montreal with George when I get back from Japan, I want to take the opportunity now. I haven’t seen the other house yet, but it’s big, old, and right next to the beach. I’m very excited.
So, that’s what’s been going on with me lately! I miss y’all but I’m having a fantastic time and learning a million things at once. I’ll post photos as soon as I get my new cord.