Discovering Koga

Sushi is arriving

The last few days have been spent doing one very important thing: getting lost. Often. While I’m lost, I’m usually quite worried, however, I have to admit that getting lost has taught me more than maps have. This week and next, I am under strict instruction to hang around town and wait to hear about the day that I am summoned upon by my company. This translates to: explore Koga with your phone handy. I think I can handle that.

Last night, a fellow ALT, Carolyn, and I grabbed dinner at a conveyer belt sushi restaurant (かっぱ寿司). This was actually my first experience at one of those! It was pretty cool, and quite reasonable. Some of the sushi was a little radical (hamburger nigiri) but I liked most of it. Desserts were on the belt, too. So dangerous for a girl like me!
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Final Destination: Koga, Japan (古河)

Finally! I’m home~!

What a journey it’s been. Between 1 bus, 2 trains, 4 cities, 4 planes, and 5 homes, it’s good to be settled in. What feels really nice is unpacking my suitcase. I can’t stress how great the last one feels. Most of the last three days have been spent in limbo between boredom and excitement. Sunday was the official moving day, yesterday I was trapped, and today I’ve been out and about.

Sunday was an odd day. Between splitting up with all the ALTs (assistant language teachers) and getting into Koga and finally being left alone to my own devices, it was quite the emotional roller coaster. If there is one thing I’ve yet to learn in life, it’s how to enjoy being on my own. You see, I’m really a social butterfly who can’t sit still and thinks too much. Being on my own with no one to talk to for 3 days has taught me so much already. I’ve learned that I am far too restless. I’ve also learned that I sleep to pass time. Continue reading

Training, Yatta!

Becky the banana.

Training is DONE! I repeat, DONE! I can’t say much about what I learned since that is all super secret stuff, but I can say that it was very challenging and motivated me to re-evaluate myself as a teacher. I want to do well, and this week has helped me to feel like I might be able to do it. Of course, that was after a lot of blood, sweat and tears. Or something similar. Continue reading

Hunkering Down

Matcha and ice cream latte

In an effort to shorten my posts, I should probably post more. That said, training is this week and I can’t promise how often I’ll be up to the task. I figure I might want to get one last post in before my 8am-9pm training days begin. Yeah, you read that correctly. So crazy! Yesterday was pretty relaxing. I got to hang out with Yoko-san, her mother and her father (both very kind) and we enjoyed a lovely “French” lunch together. Her father was so bold as to tell me not to eat very much so I don’t get fat, and ask me if I have any boyfriends (plural). Yoko-san said “Please don’t mind my father! He is so weird!” It was entertaining though, and that’s what counts! Continue reading

New City: Yokohama, Japan


While I only have one day left here in Yokohama, it still feels like home already. Yoko-san has been so wonderful by taking care of me. She treats me like family and we have fun together. Not to mention, she is hysterical! I also practice my Japanese with her, and it has improved immensely since arriving. A lot of what I learned in college is returning and I am learning some other useful things (like jishin meaning earthquake). Speaking of! My first earthquake! I was asleep during the 4.0 in San Francisco last week, so this was the first earthquake I was aware of. It was kind of terrifying for this Florida girl. Mostly because it woke me up in the middle of the night and I could hear the entire structure moving. Continue reading

Planes, Trains and Automobiles

Wow, what a ride. The last week and a half has been such a whirlwind! Please accept my sincerest apologies, I have not forgotten about you. Between GDC and moving to Japan, I don’t know which way is up anymore. Brace yourselves, this is going to be a long post! I promise to update more often from now on. My goal is a minimum of 2 posts per week. So, with that in mind, the only place to go is forward.

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New City: San Francisco

The fog was just beginning to lift as I drove past downtown Orlando on the way to the airport.

After a heart-wrenching two days of goodbyes, I’ve finally left Orlando.

So many people came to visit me the day before I left, I am truly a very lucky girl. I got to see almost all of my closest friends, those who would be top of my list to see before leaving. I was treated to breakfast, lunch, dinner and dessert. I couldn’t have asked for more. Yesterday morning at the airport was certainly very sad. My family is going to try to visit me, but it was sad saying goodbye not knowing exactly when I will get to see them next. I am very excited and happy about my move to Japan, but there is a lot of heart-ache that is going with this decision. Of course, everyone seems to agree, I’m not going to regret it. Aside from looking like a mess all day yesterday, I just spent a lot of time in airports and on planes.  Continue reading