This 3 day holiday we just had is called Golden week. It came right as we were getting started but also gave us a little break to get a handle on our new lives here. I'll give a little summary of what I did each day. Lots of old AETs went traveling but we didn't have time to prepare a trip so we stayed in Mito and explored.
Monday- We went to the lake again and had a picnic and played soccer, volleyball and frisbee. Allen Thompson was with us so we obviously met people while we were there. We met a family where the dad was from Iran and he has lived in Japan for 21 years. His wife is Japanese and they had one fireball little girl. We took turns running around with her and she wore us all out. After the park a group of us...me being the 5th wheel like always, went to do karaoke. Now karaoke in Japan is different from karaoke in the States. Here you are put in a room with all the equipment and go at it. You only have to preform for those in your party and you can buy food and drinks and make a night of it...unless you don't know Japanese and then you only stay for an hour and then go eat. (That was us!!) But it's so much fun!!
Tuesday- There is a new missionary to Mito Church whos brother is the one who is the one that interviewed me for this job. Joel has been in Japan for almost 8 years but only in Mito for 2 weeks longer then we have. He shares a house with an intern, Sasha, and their Japanese friend Gaku. They are fantastic people and invited us new people over to the house where we had lunch and went to the grocery store and learned what exactly we were buying. Basic things like this become very difficult when you can't read any of the labels. This day was very relaxing and helpful to be able to talk through how our experience has been so far.
Wednesday- Joel and Sasha had invited us to go out with the Tsunekis (the preacher and his family) and them to Hitatchi Seaside park. I wasn't sure what this was but Mari, the mom, had emailed me and asked me if I was coming so I couldn't say no. I was looking forward to getting a chance to spend time with a Japanese family and someone from the church so I could get plugged in. I fit right in with the family of 6 and loved the fact that they had lived in the US for a time and the oldest 2 knew English well and the younger ones understood most of it. The only problem is I tend to be like my dad in that I like to pester the kids until they strike back, just in fun of course. Mom tends to see and I get them in trouble. It's even worst when you can't understand most of the lecture the parents are giving to the crying boy. I'll work on it. It was a fun day of riding carnival rides, a ferris wheel, looking at thousands of tulips and a hillside of blue. It's amazing how God can be so creative with the colors and the styles of the same flower. He is quite the artist and He reminded me of that today. The park is right on the ocean so it was a GREAT view from the ferris wheel. Being my last day of holiday I was exhausted when I got home and was excited to go to sleep.
Sorry...long post but there is my week in a nutshell. Of course the kids nor the teachers wanted to return Thursday and Friday so we were all a bit run down and exhausted but we had fun. Thanks for reading. You guys are amazing and I hope you have a good weekend!!