I left last week's blog with a Sunday night BBQ. School the next day of course had me wake up at six in the morning and I'm not gonna lie, I was pretty tired.
School was productive but not as productive as usual because of . There wasn't any kendo this day so it was straight home. It was another one of those nights where my host family and I sat around the lounge, talking and laughing late into the night.
Tuesday was a holiday so I spent the day finishing off some reports and getting some homework done. I really love these unexpected holidays.
Wednesday was the first day of some serious tests for the Japanese students. Myself and Emma went to the school library and studied whilst everyone else worked hard on their exams. Test days are always half days so we all got to go home at lunch!
After school I went to the electrical store on the way home and picked up some new ear phones. There were some real good ones on sale so of course, I bought them. Can't pass up a bargain like that.
I got home and planned to do some work but I was distracted by my new earphones and ended up listening to music for the better half of the afternoon. It was Japanese music so I'll claim it as study.
We were sitting around the table eating dinner when someone mentioned that I was leaving on Saturday. And it really surprised me! Another two months have literally disappeared. This "time" thing never ceases to bewilder me.
Thursday was another test day. I got some real good study done in the library today! (I always say that but today was awesome!) I did a bunch of short tests on the grammar I had been learning and did pretty well. It was a great feeling to see the work paying off and it motivated me to study a bit harder so I could score better on the tests.
Karate was pretty chilled out that night. Everyone had a tournament to fight in on the weekend so we weren't allowed to smash each other. I was going to be staffing at the tournament even though I wanted to fight... (It was a tournament for junior high school students and under so it would have been a bit unfair if I had have entered.)
Nonetheless, it was a fun night. Midway through, Fuyuki turned up and we did get to smash it out. I slipped a sneaky head kick in that clopped him right on the cheek bone. It was actually a pretty hard kick, harder than I intended.
He laughed it off and said "nice one" as always but today he looked at me with steely eyes and said (jokingly) "I wont allow this!"
And then he proceeded to kick my ass six ways till Sunday. Instead of aiming through the guard, like you normally do, he aimed straight for my guard. He punched the living daylights out of my left arm and there was nothing I could do about it.
I still can't figure out how to block my arm when I usually use my arm to block. Man it hurt.
My arm swelled up a bit and I even had a wee bruise. It was a tough night.
And then Friday was upon us. It was a tough day at school because I had to do a couple of exams with the Japanese students. It wasn't too terrible though so no worries.
My host Dad came and picked me up after school because he was in the area. He had a few jobs to do in town so he strung me along with him. We stopped off at one of my host family's other rubber factories in town.
I thought they just ran one factory but it turns out they run a bunch. That's pretty cool.
Anyway, he takes me into one of those rooms that's just filled with people assembling small rubber parts. It looked like pretty mindless, tedious work but I guess someone's gotta do it. It was a big group of ladies working away and when host Dad walked into the room they all addressed him as "boss" and then they all stared at me.
It was the first real awkward moment I've had in quite a while. I sat down at a table and they all stared at me. Someone said I was handsome and they all laughed. Apparently I went bright red. It was pretty odd to have that awkward feeling again.
I thought I had completely gotten over strangers staring at me but today I was put back out of my comfort zone. It was quite refreshing to be honest!
In the car on the way home he asked me what I would like for dinner as it was my last night.
I said yaki-niku and he said "thought so!" They know me well, it seems!
So we did that! I had better put some photos in now. I didn't actually take any from Monday through Thursday so that's why there haven't been any.
|Oh yea, it's gonna be a good night!|
There was so much good meat, it was heaven
|Intestines and regular meat first!|
|Heart the left and liver on the right|
|This rice dish was pretty nice|
|Pumpkin flavoured ice cream in a mini pumpkin!|
|The bowl was edible!|
|We transferred to this "cafe" (It said cafe on the sign outside)|
We got home and I was full to the brim. I seriously love yaki-niku and I could probably eat myself to death in one of those restaurants if I wasn't careful.
We all went to bed with smiles on our faces. I couldn't possibly get sad when I was so happy. It was an amazing feeling.
But then I woke up the next day and had to figure out how to tackle the problem of packing my bags. It took me a few hours to get everything organised into piles that would then be put in the bags. Organising wasn't so hard but actually getting it in the bags was a mission.
But before the actual packing, I took a lunch break.
While we ate sushi and sandwiches for lunch we watched this play on the tv and it was hilarious. Once again I found it impossible to even think sad thoughts when we were all in such high spirits.
I got back to packing and finally finished the deed. I had my Rotary suit on and I felt quite sentimental as I looked over my empty room and my luggage. I wanted to say something really deep and thought provoking because I was just in one of those moods.
|I think my bags multiplied again|
I looked down at the ground and was about to say something cool but instead I swore and realised I wasn't wearing any socks and I had packed them all at the bottom of my suitcase.
I just laughed at myself and got digging.
I sat there for a moment and then found those sad feelings. I looked over my room and started getting that feeling in my gut.
I moved my suitcase into the lounge and got everyone to sign it. The feelings were starting to burst their banks by now and I had to hold back tears.
I hauled the suitcase down the stairs with Kumi cheering me on (It was so heavy and it took a long time) but eventually we managed to get all of the stuff downstairs. We had a small dessert party with host Grandma and then went outside.
Host Dad had said goodbye earlier while I was packing because he had to go to work. We shook hands but I wish I had made the farewell a bit more heartfelt than it was. I didn't really know what to say so it was one of those slightly awkward goodbyes and it didn't do justice to our relationship at all.
I really do regret not saying something more than "Thanks, will see you later!"
they only has daughters so I was the first boy that they had. Host Dad would sometimes remark on the fact that I was like "the son he never had."
He really helped me out when I had some problems and he treated me as if I really was his son. It was awesome. I know I'll see him again but I'll probably be regretting the standard farewell for quite a while.
I'll just use this experience as a lesson and make sure to follow my heart's instincts next time I'm in a situation where I'm not so sure as to what to do.
But now I was saying goodbye to the rest of the family. I hugged Mum, Grandma and Kumi and then gave Grandad a handshake. We got some photos and I cried a bit. They laughed with me as we joked about how easily I am moved to tears.
|Grandma and Grandad|
Kumi's boyfriend, Asahi even turned up.
I gave Hitomi a hug and started choking up again. I apologised to Asahi and then gave Kumi a hug too. And then they were gone.
I wiped my eyes and entered my new home. We moved my bags to my room on THE THIRD FLOOR. There are so many stairs. I'm (hopefully) gonna have some ripper calves by the end of the next two months.
We went out for dinner tonight. My 'regular' family plus my 'extra' family all came along.
The regular contingent consists of Mum, Dad, Granddad, Grandma, Grandma's sister and two younger sisters (16 and 13?)
The extra group is Host Dad's brother's family. So that means Uncle, Auntie and two nieces. They are seven and four and pretty damn adorable.
The good thing is, I was already good friends with the whole group from way before the stay started so it's really great.
I forgot to take pictures because I was busy talking to my new family but I can assure you, we had a great dinner of udon noodles, soba noodles, tenpura and a bunch of other traditional Japanese foods. Yum.
That's all for now, I know this is late but I should be able to write on Saturday so I will leave the events from Sunday onwards until then.
It's been an emotional week but I feel that this move was good. I was smiling through my tears and I know for sure that I'll see the Kamakura family again before I go back to NZ and even after that I know I will see them again.
I really am so blessed to have so much loving family.