Last full day in Japan. Where'd the week go?!

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August 27th 2011
Published: September 6th 2011
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My last full day in Japan.... obviously my schedule for today was just as packed as the other days! I woke up around 6:30am (again, not something I planned but my body insisted on getting up early) and by 9am I had left my hotel and was already heading for Sendai station. Around 10am I arrived in Natori City, where a friend had kindly offered to let me spend the night. But by 11am I was already back on a train heading towards Shiogama.

At noon, I met with an ALT friend of mine as well as some of my former students. None of my students have changed at all (in both looks and personality), and that made me happy. We spent about 2 hours chatting, while enjoying delicious ice cream, about what everyone was doing now. Before I left, we decided it would be nice to commemorate the get-together with a purikura photo! (For those of you who don't know, purikura is short for "print club." Essentially, it's a photo booth, but you can also add comments and pictures to the photo-stickers.) The one available in the mall was small, but we did our best to get all 7 of us in it. Unfortunately, I don't have a picture available to put up here, so you'll just have to trust me when I say, we did get all 7 in a photo and we had a lot of fun.

After that, I took the train to Iwakiri to meet a teacher friend, and together we went to our Sado (Tea Ceremony) teacher's house! The house looked much the same as the last time I saw it, the exceptions being: the garden on the outside was a bit bare, and the tatami mats had been changed (the changes were due to being damaged by the earthquake). After quickly exchanging greetings, we wasted no time getting the tea ceremony started. Thankfully, my friend practiced first. I hadn't practiced tea ceremony in a long time, so I needed to watch someone else first. I was surprised that when it was my turn to practice, it came to me much more easily than I expected. There is so much about Japan that I miss; tea ceremony being one of the things I miss the most. There is just something about the whole experience that is so calming. I am very grateful to be able to experience it again.

After tea ceremony, I returned to Sendai. Finally, I had a chance to do some shopping! For the first time all week, I had some free time to shop, although it was only for an hour because at 6pm I was meeting other JETs from around the area. The time definitely flew by fast. I had just enough time to visit two of my favourite shops before the meeting time. At 6pm I met up with my friends and we went for dinner. I chose the restaurant based solely on my desire to eat omu-rice (an omelet filled with rice), which everyone thought was weird but didn't complain. Time flew by again as we all chatted over dinner. We were having so much fun, I'm not entirely sure what time we left to go back to Natori City.

The remainder of the night was spent re-packing my suitcase and thinking of when I could return to Japan. It is such a great country, and I know that, sooner or later, I will be back for another visit~!

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