Saturday, June 8, 2013

Cultural Exchange

Today was great! I spent most of it sitting, eating, and talking. Oh, and meeting more Japanese college students. Sounds like a pretty good first Saturday in Japan, right?

Morning routine: Psalm 73, no yoga today

This afternoon, 10 of us went to a café called Kumakuma for a 交流会/kouryuukai (cultural 
exchange) with Shiga Daigaku and Shiga Kenritsu Daigaku students. I've been on edge all week and I'm still not confident interacting with Japanese people yet, so I was pretty nervous about it. But it actually turned out to be fun! I had a really nice conversation with one student in particular. His name was Tsubasa and he asked me a lot of questions about myself and America. What I've noticed about the local college students I've met here is that they're really nice, a surprising amount of them speak decent English, and they seem really eager to know us and learn whatever they can from us about America/American things. Also, the lady who owned the café was so generous! Not only did she host the event, but she served us free tea and cake (I drank iced coffee too by accident, haha). AND, after the event ended and the café closed, she let us stay to chat and eat more cake. She even offered to host us again before we leave in August!

Afterward the 10 of us all headed back to JCMU, stopping at Piago on the way. We arrived at the dorm to find out that one student was having some of his Japanese friends over to hang out and make たこ焼き/takoyaki (fried octopus dumplings or dough balls). They let us join, so their little get-together became a small party! Of  the little Japanese food that I know about, takoyaki is my favorite. It was so delicious, and I got to help fry a batch too!

I can't explain how much I really needed a day like today. All good people and good times, and few worries. Hopefully there will be many more days like these during my time here.

70 Days in Kansai photos

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