We took the train to Tokyo and walked around the SkyTree for a while. Then we ate lunch and spent a little time at Starbucks. There's this thing called the Sky Duck (Japanese people name their attractions the weirdest things). It's a bus that goes in the water and becomes a boat. That was pretty cool. Then we got to go to the Totoro store (I was very happy :))
It's been so rainy and cloudy lately you can't really see anything.
Those two words describe the day. Nene and I took a day bus tour.
First, we stopped at the fifth station on Mt. Fuji. Beautiful view.
If you couldn't tell, that was saracastic.
One thing I did get to do was eat some melon pan (bread with melon flavored crust) that was shaped like Mt. Fuji.
After that we ate lunch and went to Lisa and Gaspard's town. Lisa and Gaspard are som really cute French bunnies. The town is supposed to be modelled after Paris and it even has a mini Eiffel Tower.
Then we went for a boat ride and rode the Kachi Kachi Yama Ropeway. That was interesting. Kachi Kachi Yama is an old Japanese Folk story. If you wanna know more about it, HERE is the Wikipedia link. There are two gondolas that go up and down. One is a rabbit and the other is a tanuki. On the way up there's a recording that plays. The rabbit speaks Japanese and the tanuki speaks English. The only thing is that it's really funny English. Not only is it grammatically incorrect, the way the guy says it is hilarious.
Then we went home. It was a fun day despite not being able to see much.
I woke up and put on black clothes. Why? I went to the temple for some ceremony for my great aunt's husband who died. I was ready to leave way before everyone else so I was practicing piano upstairs and Nene was still in her pajamas.
At five till our time to leave, which was 9, I told her,
"It's almost nine."
and she said,
"I guess I should start getting ready."
Then my grandfather came upstairs and said,
"Are you ready to leave?"
and she said,
"What?! We're leaving nine-thirty, right?"
And that is how the day started. We ended up leaving her behind. She came a few trains behind us. We got to the temple and I got to see a bunch of relatives I haven't seen in a long while. The ceremony thing was very interesting. This bald guy in a funny outfit came out and started explaining a wooden stick with a bunch of Japanese characters on it. Nene said that was the only thing she understood. :) Then he sat down and started hitting things and chanting. Never seen anything like it before.
After all of that stuff, we went to Yokohama for lunch. It was a really nice place. Before we went into the dining room, I showed them some of my pictures because they wanted to see the farm and Ben. My grandmother was telling them how much my Japanese has improved and how much internet translators make explaining easier and this is the example she chose. The other day I was telling her about the time I visited the dairy near my house and one of the cows had cancer. The only thing was that I didn't know what cancer was in Japanese so I looked it up. (It's gan by the way.) Then we got called into the dining room. When we were all seated, my mother's cousin asked me, "So what happened to the cow with cancer in its eye?" So I told her that the eye had to be removed and then all of the sudden the whole room was really quiet. Here's a fact about me: when I'm nervous, I laugh. It was really quiet and I got nervous so I laughed. Then everyone else started laughing too so it was okay. :)
The food was good.
After all of that, everyone else departed and Nene and I went shopping for a bit before heading home. Strange day? Maybe, but it was interesting as always. :)
We got to go to my favorite restaurant tonight. Yay! Every time we go to Japan we eat here at least once. I always like to get the four cheese okonomiyaki. Okonomiyaki is sort of like a unsweet pancake with veggies in it. It sounds disgusting but I'm telling you it tastes amazing!
First, they give you a bowl with the ingredients in it and you mix it all up.
Then you cook it like a pancake. Sort of.
Just about done. Mmmm. That's mayonaise and seaweed with some special okonomiyaki sauce.
I hope we can go again before I return to the states. I drew a sketch of the logo and my aunt (I call her Nene) filled in the Japanese.
We had dinner with my grandmother's older sister. She is a very interesting lady. I am told she is involved in so many things, she has something almost every evening (ex. tennis). She also likes to feed people. She stick so many things on the table. "Tabenasai!" Or in English, "Eat!" Aparently, the first time Daddy visited her, he ate so much he got sick. You wouldn't undersand how pushy she is until you meet her. In conclusion, she is a very interesting, nice lady. :)
This morning I went jogging with my grandparents in the really pretty cemetery. It had a lot of bamboo growing in the middle. I didn't take any photos because what kind of crazy person brings their dSLR jogging with them? Then we stopped at Denny's (which, by the way, is much better in Japan) for some French toast. Mmmm. I got home and showered and then we sat around till lunch. For lunch we went to Sushi-ro. I'll tell you more about kaiten-zushi later. It was delicious! So here is the picture of my ponderingu donut from Mister Donut that I ate yesterday with my aunt and some sushi pictures.
It is too bad they don't have this kind of donut in America. It's so good!
The sushi comes in circles on a conveyor belt and you take what you want.
I'm finding it hard to live without Lightroom. I think I'm gonna get the trial version, which is just long enough for my stay, on my grandparents' laptop.
I've finally made it after an super long flight to Japan. As always, I felt like I was going to go crazy, but as usual I have retained my sanity. :) The plane was cold so I bundled up.
Since today is Sunday, I went to church this morning and saw my friends at Yokosuka Baptist Church. It was sort of nice to speak English with someone even after only 2 days. Now I'm going to go eat a ponderingu at Mister Donuts. :) I`ll take a picture for you.
1AM August 14, 2014 (FL time), 2PM August 15, 2014 (Tokyo time)
Well, six hours down, four more hours to go. I feel like no one can know how much I want to get off this plane right now. At least the flight is only ten hours long. However, because the second leg of the trip is shorter, the first part was five hours instead of the usual two. I've been occupying myself by sleeping, playing solitaire, sleeping, playing hangman, sleeping, eating, and sleeping. I'm going to be so jet-lagged when I finally get over there.
Note: Captain America: The Winter Soldier came on later and that was awesome. Only, we landed before it finished. :(
Lately, life has been busy, busy, busy. That's not a bad thing though. I don't like being bored. During the week of July 21st, Ben and I went to Crossroads camp at Camp Maranatha in Ila, GA. As always it was great physically and spiritually. I made many much needed decisions there and made some new friends. Instead of heading home like the other two youth groups that came, the VCBC youth group got to stay all day Saturday. On Sunday, we went to our former youth pastor's (who is now the senior pastor of Joy Baptist) church where the Voices of Victory sang. While the rest of the group boarded the bus towards home, Ben and I hopped on the RV our family rented and we drove around the Blue Ridge Mountains for the rest of the week. My grandparents and aunt are visiting from Japan so the road trip was perfect.
A nice, hot cup of tea :)
My aunt went back to Japan a couple weeks ago. Since my grandparents don't like navigating airports and stuff by themselves, they decided to take me with them. We are leaving tomorrow and I'll be staying with them for a month so I can study. After all, the best way to learn a foreign language is to immerse yourself in it, right? See y'all later! Leigha