Friday, 20 September 2013

matsuri and shipwrecked in makurazaki

It's been a while since I've been able to post, the past few weeks here have been so busy! This week at school I've finally started my real, non-introductory lessons, with a mixture of activities and games. The ability and tone of each class varies a lot - some stare at me in silence, some are pretty cheeky and take some coaxing to even write their own name, and some are a happy medium of genki and polite. 

Now we have yet another long weekend, (this one is Autumnal Equinox Day) and I decided not to go on a trip but stay in the 'jo, have some time by myself after some news from home, catch up with things, and plan the next two weekends. In two weeks Gabby is coming to meet me in Osaka for ten days and I'm beyond excited!!

Last weekend was jam-packed though. On Saturday a bunch of ALTs from Miyakonojo drove out to a matsuri (a local festival) in the woods, to support our taiko group performing. The weather has finally lost some of its humidity and the night was fresh and cool. We sampled noodles and takoyaki and enjoyed the entertainment. 

The fireworks were insane for such a small festival! 

We got an early night in preparation for our roadtrip the next day down to Makurazaki.
My personal band made the drive a little more interesting.. 
We set up camp by a beach and then drove some more to a little port town. ALTs from all around were arriving in small groups and being ferried on an old speed boat by an ancient old man. About half way through our crossing he decided to start messing with us by tipping the boat from side to side and bouncing it over the biggest waves, all with a devilish little grin on his face! 

But, we made it in one piece... to this!!

 <<< This one genuinely has no filter, the colours were amazing! We spent the afternoon barbecuing Japanese style, snorkeling with tropical fish, drinking beer and marveling at our surroundings. 

The trip back was no less terrifying though! 

Back at our campsite, this was waiting for us. 

We call this our lesbian couple shot..

We watched a spectacular sunset and indulged in some bike light-lit cooking, masterminded by the wonderful Satoko. 

As the drinks flowed freely, jenga got pretty damn serious. 

In an attempt not to be annoying gaijin for our fellow campers, we spent the end of the night on the rocks with the waves crashing around us. 

It was an utterly beautiful night. I had so many images in my mind before coming to Japan, but they were all different from the tropical beauty of Miyazaki and Kagoshima. I'm so glad I was placed here and am getting to experience a side of Japan that so many tourists never see. 

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