2015/03/09

march 9th

Our days in japan are number yet our spirits are still hight. This lead to one of the most memorable kimono days in Japan despite the disgusting and tiring weather. The morning was rough since I woke up at 7:51 and barely made it to the lobby in time to head out. We jumped right into the day and immediately got taxi’s to head to the kimono shop. The taxi drivers are generally nice here but there is always a language barrier. Some of the Taxi’s arrived later then others to the kimono shop in beautiful and historic Shijyo, Kyoto When we entered the kimono shop, somehow I managed not to hit the ceiling. I really think that inJapan I developed a reflex of bending down when entering buildings.
Nevertheless, we got our kimonos on and went to a wooden house in a middle of nowhere (aka waiting area) and waited there for girls to do their hair thing. Afterwards, we walked into the a beautiful red temple , taking selfies literally every 2 meters. we lit green incense on fire for good luck. We got our fortunes and we set off to get lunch. We stopped by a small restaurant to eat some snacks. Everything there smelt and tasted like green tea (except for green tea itself. It tasted like seaweed).
It seems to take us a while to get places since we walk and stop by every food place we pass. It took us a total of two ice cream shops to eventually get to a main road. We then split into taxi groups and were directed to head to the market. Somehow some of the directions didn’t stick because haft of the groups didn’t arrive at the market. It took us over a hour to track everyone down and find them. Once we were reunited we split into lunch groups and Mami surprised us with a afternoon of free time.
Roman

2015/03/07

March 7th

Today was an amazing and exhausting day. We started off with visiting Hiroshima castle. It was a very special experience because we accidentally walked into a shrine in a middle of a wedding. At least now I know how beautiful and classy Japanese weddings are. The castles are all similar here. We have visited at least three castles and each one we visit has similar displays. It really shows how united japan is as a country. After we walked around the museum for around a hour we walked back throughout the park to the hotel. We spent a little to much time in the castle and wound up missing our train. This gave us time to pick up some yummy bento boxes at lunch before we departed on a long bullet train ride to osaka.
The bullet train ride gave us a opportunity to work on our journals and SLEEP! I think our group actually looks forward to the bullet train rides now since we do so much a day. The rest of the day went quickly by the time we got to Shin – Osaka we were all tired and ready to just get to the hotel. Only it didn’t quite happen like that. Haft go the group didn’t make the train do to the confusion and they had to navigate there way to Osaka. Luckily, we all have gotten pretty good with the subway system and we were able to find our way to osaka.
When we finally arrived at the station we walked to this little capsule hotel called Drop inn Osaka. the place was really cool. It kinda reminded me of a cross between Japan and Brooklyn. Basically instead of rooms we had Capsules in a communal room. they were comfortable but a little small. Overall, It was defiantly a day to remember in Japan.

Wasabi Frappachino’s (Roman, Lindsay and Jin)

Scavenger hunt in kimonos. We found everything except the rest of the group.

By Cole, Lindsay, Paul, and Gonzalo                                                                                                                                 Today was a excellent way to wrap up our trip. It was our final kimono day, which makes us happy as well as sad because they are so beautiful but very uncomfortable to wear. Waking up knowing that we had to spend a day in such a confining item was nerve racking, yet exciting because wearing one is a rare experience. Our spirits were decimated when we stepped outside into pouring rain and chilly temperatures. We were convinced our kimono day would be canceled midway through the cab ride. Yet upon arrival we were greeted with friendly smiles and plenty of kimonos to try on.                       We walked around in our kimonos in the rain for hours. We started at the shop in beautiful and historic Shijyo, Kyoto. The streets were bustling with tourists and locals all visiting the temple. Walking around the temple was interesting. You can tell there is a lot of superstition associated with the temple. People where buying fortunes and burning green incense. It took us over two hours to get through the temple but we stopped for a lot of snacks and shopping so it was understandable. After the temple we got into cabs and headed to the market for lunch. Due to the language barrier and poor directions, some of the groups didn’t make it to the meeting point. It took us over an hour to find them. This lead to a incredible change in plans that gave us six hours of free time to eat, shop and do another scavenger hunt!

 

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The Day of Misadventures

Miguel, Israa, Jessy, India, and Seamus

Dear Diary,

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Today was another Kimono day, this time while visiting the Kiyomizu temple. Miguel, India and Roman got lost but we found them later taking pictures. We ate at a little restaurant by the side of a temple, where we got our fortunes read by Mami.

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Remember this was all during a small rain storm and we were wearing a kimono.

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After those events took place my group and another group got dropped off at the wrong Louis Vuitton taxi stop. As the other group grew frightened during our misadventure, we walked back and forth until spotting the correct Louis Vuitton. When reunited the trip leaders introduced us to another scavenger hunt (this all happened while Seamus’ Kimono was falling apart). We quickly ran across to the sports shop while completing the scavenger hunt (he eventually bought a pair of pants). Our group then moved into lunch where we went to moss burger and we all ate lots and lots of food and drank lots and lots of melon soda with the exception of Pepsi.

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When we left we had an adventure in the market and got honey ice cream. After a while of wondering around looking at shops that we don’t fully understand and laughing of t-shirts, our group split into two groups between a taxi and a bus and “raced” back to the hotel. With a few more members we went to diner and soon the hot spring adventures began.

 

Mar. 9th 2015, Chengxi (Frank) Fan

2nd Scavenger Hunt!!!!

2nd Kimono Day!!!

In our plan chart, it is said that we are going to wear the kimono and go around Kyoto today! I didn’t really enjoy it last time. Today we spent the whole day walking around the street.

After we wore the kimono, we went to Kiyomizu-dera temple first. Kiyomizu-dera temple is a Buddhist temple in eastern Kyoto. It was established in 798 C.E. Most of us did draw there to predict if we will be lucky or not in the future. Some of them got the worst one so they did it many times. Also, some of them did draw about the love, the future and so on. I took many photos and had fun there!

Then Scavenger Hunt!!

Our group has Jin, Roman, Bill and me. We went to Currency Exchange to start our tasks. Why? Because Bill wanted to change some money and we wanted to let the man who did exchange for him take photo of us. First, we asked the man to take a photo. Then we found that there were some people with kimonos. We asked two old women to took photos with us. Two tasks, done!!!2D50D31C7C9086857AD984D01AA6E787

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Then we went to Starbucks to have some drinks! Thirs task, done!!
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We found an advertisement and we reacted it!!! It was so funny!!!
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Finally we bought something for our parents. I bought something to eat for my parents. I also bought a box of playing cards!!! It was because I liked to seek different kinds of playing cards. For example, some of playing cards had the introduction of famous places and historical people on them. So I can not only play with my friends but also get much knowledge from them!

We took a cab to go back to the hotel!!!
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Scavenger Hunt – Kyoto Kimono Day

Japan Field Trip

Mon. Mar 9 Local time

Chris

Together with Jenny, Andy and Serena

Today we had a great day in Kyoto streets with plenty of markets and food to eat. Our second Scavenger Hunt’s targets were 1) Asking someone else with Kimono and take a photo with them 2) Advertisement replica 3) Souvenirs for our parents 4) Five different flavor but same type of food 5) Ask some one else to take a group picture of us four. We first went to a small Ramen restaurant and had a delicious meal. Then we asked the waitress to help us take a group picture. After that we walked around the streets trying to find some advertisement. We also took a picture of five different flavor food in a Local Food Shop. Fortunately we saw two women with Kimono too and took a picture with them. IMG_1074

Continue walking we mimicked an advertisement about the Disney movie “Frozen”. We also stopped by a cake restaurant and had some desserts. Eventually we headed our way back to the hotel. We were so tired but had so much fun.

Chris (with Jenny, Andy and Serena)

On May 8th

DSC_0063DSC_0062DSC_0053DSC_0044On May 8th, team Japan went to the Sky Garden in Osaka, how beautiful the view are!!

Afterwards,We moved to Kyoto from Osaka.Although this trip is being so hard, we are having a lot of fun.

And We went to ginkakuji in kyoto as well which is one of the famous temple in japan.

At night, i took my group to sushi place. However i made a mistake that i took them to real sushi place.Its really expensive!130bucks.amount of money for 5people.

 

Group Wasabi Frappuccino Feb.27

Today began in Osaka. We took a bullet train from Osaka to Okayama. The train ride was hilarious.
Okayama was a incredibly beautiful city in Japan. The day we spent was a day to remember. Even though it was cold, and the lunch was very interesting. We started with the Okayama castle. On the way walking to the castle, the view was definitely beautiful and the walk was very enjoyable. The castle itself was indeed very beautiful, it was a total black castle with gilded roof, and it was contrasted with Himeji castle, which is a total white castle. We walked around inside the castle, took photos in ceremonial clothes, and saw many beautifully crafted swords. By the time we finished the tour, it was really cold.

We the walked to the garden. It was unforgettably beautiful and elegant. In the garden, we had our first traditional Japanese green tea ever, it was a little bit bitter, but very foamy. Together we also had mochi, which was very good. In such a freezing weather, nothing could be better than a cup of warm tea with a little sweet. In the garden, there were blossoms, we couldn’t tell if they were the famously known sakura or not, but they were definitely pleasures to look at. Only in Japan right now one could feel that spring was coming, in contrast to the cold freezing icy weather in New York.
After we left the park, we went onto a mission of scavenger hunt. Within the small groups, we all have gotten tasks to complete. Among them, the hardest ones were finding hirakaras on signs, or asking people from different age groups to take photos with us. For taking photos, we tried to ask a few ladies who we guessed could be around the age of more than 65, but they eventually all rejected our quests. But finally we found a guy who was 75 underground and successfully took a photo with him. Maybe he didn’t even known what was going on. For finding the hirakaras, Jin tried to communicate with local students and asked them to help him finding them, and due to the limit of acknowledgement of English, they weren’t able to talk to each other successfully (using a dictionary). We had completed all the tasks besides the one of asking random strangers and say hi to them in Japanese, which we had forgotten. We eventually found our way back to the hotel with the help from a local lady who could almost speak English.
Today ended with a pleasant dinner to celebrate India’s 15th birthday.image

Lunch snack

Lunch snack

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Sakura?

Sakura?

With shop assistant

With shop assistant

Roman with kids

Roman with kids

The gang

The gang

Jin's take over

Jin’s take over

Kerrie in kimono

Kerrie in kimono

Group photo in front of the castle

Group photo in front of the castle

Lindsay, Roman, Jin

March 7 & 8—Osaka~Kyoto

Team Japan was rained on AGAIN but that did not stop us!

After a train ride from Hiroshima to Osaka, we walked to the hostel and took off in small groups to a dinner and shopping in Umeda area.

The next day, we went up to the top of Umeda Sky building—-we saw Osaka from 173m above the ground. The elevator and escalator ride was incredible and we finally realized how BIG Osaka really is when we stood on the rooftop and look around.

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Nishiki market

In the afternoon, we moved on to Kyoto and visited GInkaku-ji (Silver pavilion) and Nishiki-market. We will be enjoying our stays in a nice hot spring inn in Kyoto for the next 3 nights.IMG_1221

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Ginkakuji

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Liam to wish for more responsibility

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Sky building

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Ginkakuji

Oh, and of course in between activities and means, we continued to study more about the Japanese sweets and snacks. So much to learn!!!! 😉  IMG_1213 IMG_1154 IMG_1161 IMG_1188 IMG_1149

Mar. 6th 2015, Hiroshima & Miyajima

March 6th 2015
Group name: Onigirieeeee
Members: Taito Shimizu, Chengxi (Frank) Fan, Xiang (Jenny) Chen. Yuqing (Bill) Wang

It was a sunny day, a perfect weather to start our activities. Hiroshima, one of major cities in Japan and it was also known as the first city that was destroyed by the “Little Boy” which is an atomic bomb that was dropped by the U.S. Army. If you go to Japan and you are in Hiroshima, we recommended you to visit the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum and Miyajima.
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Firstly, we visited Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum. It is a museum for remembering people that were lost from the disaster of a single atomic bomb. In August 6th in 1945 at 8:15 a.m., U.S. Army dropped the atomic bomb, “Little Boy” in Hiroshima. Suddenly, the whole city was blasted to dust and thousands of people died and their houses was destroyed as well. Nine days after the disaster, the Mikado surrendered and then the World War II was over. Even though this thing made the war ends quickly, it was so unfair and so cruel to those innocent people who died in Hiroshima. It tells us about one thing, “Everyone wants peace. Nobody wants wars.”

After that we went to Miyajima by boat. There were deers walking all over the streets at Miyajima. They were so cute but one thing was so annoying was that they preferred eating plastic bags and paper from tourists rather eating food that nature provides them! In order to prevent it. We have to keep all trash away from these loving animals.