Saturday, July 16, 2005

Tateyama English Camp

This was a Toyama-wide event put on by the international center in Toyama city. A great group of kids, fun teachers, interesting activities and great food -what more can you ask for in a camp!

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Osaka and the YMCA

This month an ex-roomate of mine from Lethbridge arrived in Japan with 9 wide-eyed teenagers from the YMCA in tow. They invited me to tag along with them as they toured with a group of 15 youth from the YMCA in Osaka. After self introductions and presentations we headed out into the rain to see a temple and museum (the name of which escapes me at the moment). The students were devided into groups of 8 (3 Canadians, 5 Japanese) with the two Y leaders, Dave and Christine, and myself as 'supervisors'. The Japanese kids did a fantastic job of getting us to the temple (after a few minor misreadings of the trains) and once there we thoroughly enjoyed the day despite the constant downpour.
For lunch, each group chose a different restaurant and we had the opportunity to get to know each other a bit better. All of the students made the effort to communicate in both English and Japanese. The Japanese kids had amazing English - some of them had lived abroad -and they were more than happy to try to explain the temple, it's surroundings and some of the rituals that are performed there.
It was a refreshing experience - to watch Dave, Christine and the kids experience Japan for the first time. Living here for 3 years now, I've begun to take some things for granted. It was also great to see these teenagers come together and communicate so positively and confidently. Kudos to Dave and Chistine for taking on the challenge. I'm sure it will be an experience you'll never forget!
Osaka YMCA 2005

Self introductions at the YMCA in Osaka.
July 9, 2005