Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Kyoto :-D

Hi all! In Kyoto now and we are going to Nara today for a field trip. I've seen a bunch of temples and shrines which has been really fun and interesting to look at. We have our first free day tomorrow so we'll get to explore Kyoto on something besides a bus haha. It was really hard leaving my host family and its weird now to be living in a hotel. I'm definitely more excited now to be living with a host family in the Bahamas this summer :) We have one more tour on Saturday of Hiroshima (which I'm very exicted for I want to see memorials and pay respect for the past) and then the rest of the days we're traveling and traveling and traveling haha. Should be good though its nice to spend some time with the class since we really havent except for classtime. My Japanese isnt half bad I've actually retained some of the lessons which is pretty cool. Still super blonde american though everyone comes up to me and is like "hel-lo wel-come" haha. I miss you all and will be back in the USA monday!!!
Lots of Love,

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Finally a Post!

Hi all sorry I havent posted in forever the days have been going very fast with the time in Tokyo wrapping up. We leave for Kyoto on Monday afternoon and we get to take the bullet train! Hopefully we'll see Mt. Fuji! I've been to Tokyo Tower, Asakusa, Shibuya, the Imperial Gate, and Hopppo-en garden (my favorite one so far since we got to participate in a traditional tea ceremony, it was really fascinating, peaceful, and respectful of the natural elements).

Tonight though was QUITE an experience haha. I met a bunch of my host dad's family tonight since they had never seen a blue eyed blonde before. They flipped lol they were so excited to see me it felt like I was some celebrity at Christmastime or something. They couldnt stop taking pictures of me and every couple minutes "shes so pretty" and "look at her eyes/hair" and "stay with us next time youre in Japan." LOL it was so funny the nephew of my host dad is 24 and a police officer and everyone wanted us to marry tonight! lol he was sooo nervous and kept laughing and offering me food. We took a picture together to show his friends haha and he was like omg after the picture. LOL my host mom was like uh she has a boyfriend cause they were NOT letting it go. It was pretty much one of the best experiences I've had so far - I thought Japanese people were really reserved and kept their emotions in check 24/7 but I was clearly wrong with this family. They were super giddy the entire time and every time I spoke Japanese they all clapped and cheered. Dinner was loud and fun and I just loved every minute of it as I blushed and laughed too. Fantastic night it was so much fun and I had such a good time :) Only in Japan!!!

Keep writing comments!! Lots of Love,

Sunday, May 6, 2007


Ok, so i'm writing in because a bunch of people were complaining haven't posted on the blog recently...let me first say this will be long, and second (to my dad) i have to move the whole comp around half the time to get it to charge, other times there's no's getting really annoying so can i get it looked at when i get home for the summer?? thank u. Ok, here's my recap of the trip (for me) since tuesday...

Classes have been boring...Tuesday after class I went out with Britton and his host father and host father's daughter. His host father's first question when I was introduced was "is she you're girlfriend?" and he didn't seem to understand when we tried to explain we're just friends. I got a kick out of that. He's a really nice guy, kept saying i was cute and that I have a nice smile (and he said once i look 15, i do NOT!! lol) We got Britton a cell phone (which took FOREVER!! and they kept giving us tea, though it was really good). Then we went out to dinner to this restaurant Britton went to last time he was here, but he couldn't find it, then, by chance, he did. I can't remember what we ate (and even if I could, I can't spell it) but it was good. there was this hot stove thing on the table in front of us that they put the food on to stay warm, or cook or whatever, it was good, i took a picture of it. Then I went home and didn't sleep because my insomnia finally found me (i thought I had lost it somewhere over the pacific or arctic)..
Wednesday we met at 130, but I have to leave my Host House at 8ish in the morning because that's when they all leave and I don't have a key, so I wandered around and found a beautiful garden. Lot's of pictures of that, and one sketch of a tree later, I realized I had to find my way back to school (which took some time, I lost track of where I had gone). Then we had our trip to the TV station which would have been much more interesting (and it was interesting for me because I love the gadgets and stuff they use) if we could understand more of what they said. After that we split up, but I was really tired and just went home where I bonded with my host mother while I helped make dinner (by cutting carrots). Then I passed out around 12...
Thursday we had more boring classes, I don't even remember what the lecture was about (politics and history I think) because the speaker spoke in a very low monotone...very boring. I think thursday is that day that Jessica and I explored around a bit, but I'm not totally positive, it could have also been the day I went straight home after school...they all blend together sometimes...
Friday was fun because after class (just the language one) we had a convention thing with Japanese students our age. I made a few friends there who were really cool. I spent a lot of time talking with these two girls Sally and another (who's name I don't want to brutally slaughter with my attempt at spelling) and we talked about Rome and Ancient Greece (my fave subjects and my major =D) and Sally knew a lot because she's a philosophy major and reads a lot of their stuff. So we had fun with that, then I went home (most of the way with Jess which was cool)...
Saturday my host family took me to two shrines, one Buddhist one Shinto, I took a LOT of pictures, of course. One of the shrines was by a beach and we got to play in the water which was amazing, I miss the beach (note to parents, I want to go to Glouscester for a weekend soon plz!!) I also managed to get a sunburn without realizing it. Now it hurts like all hell, but before it was pointed out to me I hadn't noticed...It also itches which is really annoying because it hurts to itch it. Then I went to a baseball game with Yuki. It was a Central League game (they have to leagues, Central and Pacific) between the Giants (home team) and the Swallows (also a Tokyo team, but the away team in this case). It was played in the Tokyo Dome, which is f***ing huge! (edited in case there are young children reading) the Giants have the CUTEST mascot ever, though I'm not quite sure what it is. the Giants won, the Swallows didn't even get a run it, it was sooo cool!! the Giants have cheerleader who come out every three innings or so, and there was no 'boo'ing in the crowd, nor yelling at the Ump...and each team had a band in the crowd leading ppl in cheering. And when a new batter came up for the Giants they each got a theme song. It was incredible. By the way, Happy Bday to my mom on sat...
Sunday, today, a group of us (not listing for fear of leaving out Megan accidentally again her killing me in my sleep) went to the Ueno was soo funn!! the bears and birds and bats and kitties were all soo cute!!! unfortunately my camera died part way though because I forgot to charge it (it's charging now), so i'll have to bum pictures off of Jess and Megan. Sam was craving American food so we had McDonalds for lunch...not as disgusting as it is at home at least. Then we went to the Tokyo Dome City (which is a park/shopping place outside the Tokyo Dome) and Jess and I rode the ferris wheel (like the REALLY big one in England) while Kim, Abby, Sam, and Megan went elsewhere, not sure where. Jess and hung out, talked, and looked around after the wheel. I bought Noah, and the girls (my baby cousins) presents. Sadi, Clara, Kiki, and Jen are also taken care of. Go me! After all that walking and doing stuff all day I came home, and almost immediately left again for a second baseball game (which i just got back from, the Giants lost this time, 2 to 1) because Yuki wanted me to go with him. It's so cute, they call me "R(l)in-Onee-chan" which is big sister lyn in can I say no?
Anyway, that's humongously long post. I hope this satisfied everyone who was complaining =P


Fun Weekend

Hi all! Last Friday we had these round-table discussions with Japanese students about various social, political, or economic topics involving both countries - Liz and I had International Development which was about global poverty and volunteerism/awareness about poverty issues. Very cool the students were really nice and very curious (smart too!). Then we had a little reception which was lotsa fun and I wish we had more exposure to kids our age like that so we can ask more questions. I'm lucky because my host mom is very honest and fluent but many of us dont really get to ask questions either due to a language barrier or age barrier.

Saturday Chris, Jeff, and I went with Jeff/My host family to Tokyo Tower and Roppongi Hills. Tokyo Tower was neat I didnt go up because we're going on Wednesday when its less crowded but Jeff and Chris took the 600 stairs up! It was Childrens Day (national holiday) so it was pretty crowded, plus being a Saturday too. Roppongi we went to an modern art museum which was nice but modern art wasnt really my thing. Some stuff was cool like the historical art of laughter but the movies of people like walking down a street where not so interesting.

Today Meghan, Lyn, Jessica, Kim, Abby, and I went to Ueno Zoo which was fun :) Then we got McDonalds because I was craving it (plus NO american food in over a week, including Diet Coke) and went to Tokyo Dome City since it was raining pretty hard. Lyn and Jessica went on the ferris wheel while the rest of us went to "Bubba Gump Shrimp" Restaurant. Its a chain devoted to Forrest Gump the movie and was SO COOL. Theres one in Osaka too so we're gonna go then too. LOVED it so awesome very cool environment to relax in. So we had a bit of an pseudo-American day which was fun to take a minibreak from the Japanese overload. Good weekend overall :)

Wednesday, May 2, 2007

Dumb blonde

Oh and the long train story? That is by Samantha Whitford :)

Because It's Me... lol

Hi all! So later today we are going to the Fuji TV station which will be a lot of fun :) However I must share my train experience yesterday, and this could only happen to me because its me and I just attract these kinds of stories.

So I'm sitting on the train la de da minding my own business when this guy gets on. I'd put him at like 55 or so but all Asians look WAY younger to me than they do so who knows. The train was pretty empty and I noticed him because he was wearing funky glasses, had red highlights, and like a beatles but longer bob haircut. Hence I noticed him but tried hard not to stare. WELLLLL he sat down directly across from me, facing me and whipped out a notebook and pen. Whatever no big deal right? WRONG HE STARTING DRAWING ME. I was thinking oh wait maybe I'm just being a paranoid foreigner but he would glance at me, sketch a little, glance again like REALLY obvious not even trying to hide it. So I'm getting really uncomfortable and not making eye contact and praying he gets off at the next stop since I have 3 more to go, of course. And of course again, he doesnt get off.

Yep it gets better. So the last stop before mine this announcement comes on in Japanese so I have no idea what it said. But at the last stop before mine, everyone gets off the train. Now there's like 7 people in my car so everyone getting off isnt a huge deal as I continue to sit. Well creepy sketch artist makes a motion like come on, get off the train. I go "ee-yeah" which is Japanese for no cause I'm NOT getting off with creepy guy. Uh lol the announcement was everyone get off the train this is the last stop for this train another one is coming in 5 minutes. Fantastic. Stupid foreigner, right here. So I get off looking really really dumb and am like sorry to the creepy guy. Side note: Japanese personal bubble is bigger than American personal bubble. So as I'm standing there waiting for the next train this guy stands so close that his right arm is almost touching my left arm. And he asks if I speak English (because after all its written in bold on my forehead). I say yes and then he asks what I'm in Japan for. I say visiting cause hes creeping me out big time. He says Oh with your husband? I go No (in my head like CRAP i should have said yes) with a quick recovery of "with family". So hes small talking and whips out his sketching of me (terrible) and is like oh I drew you. I nod and am like uh thanks. Then he asks which station is mine which I had to say because he would have figured it out one way or another and he goes ohhh are you near the station? where do you live? Now I'm tweaking. LOL I just go "pretty close" and then I think he got the message cause he sorta stopped talking after that. I was so positive he was gonna follow me off the train but once I got to my exit gate and I saw he stayed on the train and didn't follow me out I burst out laughing with relief. Then I was the stupid foreigner laughing at herself. It was so funny though afterwards and I told Yoshiko my host mom and she laughed really hard too. Go Figure Right?! Only to me.

Aside from that I had a long chat with Yugi host dad about movie stars and sports last night which was amazing and I guess after I went to bed he was like "Lets get another exchange student" to my host mom :) My host family is fantastic and I would LOVE to visit them again after the twins are born. Alright super long blog entry but I had to share my story because how could I not. Love you all and keep sending me messages!!!

Monday, April 30, 2007


Today, as Sam said, we had our first day of classes. Our language teacher was really nice. She has a great sense of humor, though she's only our language teacher for 4 of the 8 classes. We had Ramen for lunch, a group of us which consisted of Sam, Britton, Jarrett, Jessica, Brittany, me and one other person who I know I'm forgetting and feel very bad about, but am too tired to think of who it was. Anyway, I had this spicy kind and it was amazing!! I had to drink a lot of water because it had a little kick to it, but otherwise it was very good. After classes a group of us went out exploring the area around our school. There were a lot of shops, and many bright shiny things. We got to see a Shinto shrine, and go and look around and take pictures, we saw a Buddhist shrine as well, but didn't go in because we were very tired at that point. Lots of wandering around.
I made it through the subways ok, but on the walk back to the house I got a little lost. Kiki's right, I do get lost going in straight lines ^^; but anyway, I was found rather quickly by Aran, one of the daughters here. She, Uran (her sister) and Yuki (her brother) seem to forget half the time that I don't understand a word they say and talk very fast at me. Everyone in the family is very good about teaching me things and making sure I understand things, though. Anyway, we had a fun day and now I'm going to be early because I am very tired from the day.

Ja ne!


First Day at School and the Train

Hello again!! So today was the first day at school with a 2 hour language class in the morning and a 2 hour lecture on education (this second lecture will change each day). It went really well our language instructor is very nice and has a good sense of humor. We got ramen at lunch which was NOT the same as US but extremely tasty. Thicker noodles here and extra veggies/meat added in. More like soup with tons of spagetti-like noodles.

Also had my first experience with the train system. Hm. haha I had two guides this morning who were not that great because they kept turning around and looking at signs. I think they were confused and their english was as good as my Japanese. The ride home though I did all by myself and DID NOT i repeat DID NOT get lost!!! That's right, me lol. I'm very proud but it was still stressful. It did however take me longer both ways than it was supposed to but I'm ok with that. Well gtg but just as a FYI to everyone I can receive emails but not send them (weird I know) so either send messages through facebook or keep checking the blog.

Lots of Love,

Sunday, April 29, 2007

My First Entry!

Hi everyone! Meghan here! My first two days in Japan have been amazing! The jet lag last night was a little rough and I went to bed early, but other than that I have loved it. Abby and I are living together with Yoruko. She is very nice and has a decent amount of english under her belt, so we are learning from one another. when i first arrived in nakana station i was amazed. it was night time and the place was lit up like new york city. we took a taxi from nakana to Yoruko's house where we introduced ourselves and took a bath. The bath was an amazing experience! You take a shower first, and then you soak in a bath afterwards. it is very relaxing. today we walked around in zenpukijigawa garden with Yoruko and her two dogs Muku and Chiru. they are so cute! she is a very nice lady and afterwards we went shopping in nakana station, where there are 5 floors of shopping! it was very busy there, but it was still very quiet and very clean. it was a nice change from the usual crowds of America! I hope everyone back in the States is doing well, I will be updating more!

~Meghan chan


Hi all!! Sam here writing to let everyone know that I am doing great! My host family is amazing Yoshiko the mom is fluent (dad Yugi not so much) and she spent 10 years in the USA so her English is fantastic. I slept on a futon mattress last night but of course slept like a rock, big surprise. No jet lag yet still going strong despite our horrible turbulence on the plane yesterday. Went on a walk with Yoshiko this morning and her daughter (one year old SO CUTE) and went to the bakery and grocery store which was very fascinating. I'm learning a ton and still have lots more to do. So all is great and look for more posts when I can!!
Lots of Love,

Saturday, April 28, 2007

See if this works

So we just got here and are all probably suffer jet lag (except me because I'm an insomniac...and I slept on the plane). I don't know about everyone else, but I'm confused in all senses of the word. My Host family has three kids, Aran, Uran (the girls, Aran is in 6th grade and Uran is in 2nd) and Yuki (the boy, he's in 4th grade). They seem like wonderful kids, but they don't know English, and I don't know enough Japanese to hold a conversation. Lee (the mother) seems to be the only one capable of English, though her husband, Jun, understands me well enough. They are all very nice and I hope I learn quickly so I can talk to them and understand what they are saying. Everything is so different here, it's amazing! That's all I have to say, I just wanted to be special and be one of the first (maybe the first) person to send a blog. I hope I have the address right.