This coming blog is one of the easiest hard-to-write blogs that I’ve done so far. It is hard because it will be my last while staying at the Kobayashi’s home. I am moving tomorrow afternoon to my third host family, the Shiozawa’s, where I will be living until my return on the 11th of July. Yet this blog is simple because I know exactly what I need to say.
The days have flown by and I’m once again packing my bags, waiting with a heart full of gratitude, anxiety, excitement, and awe. I am grateful because I have had two and a half wonderful months at the Kobayashi’s. They have shown me hospitality that I cannot put into words. I will always be indebted to them for what they have so willingly given to me. I am anxious for what my new life will be like; I know hardly anything about the Shiozawa’s. They live on the very opposite side of my region up in the mountain village of Ooyama. They own a soba noodle restaurant and chili spice factory. Besides that I know very little. I am excited because just as this is an ending to one part of my journey, it is the beginning to another. I will be experiencing a different lifestyle with new friends and family. I am in awe because the concept of time is still ever so twisted. I feel like I have just moved into the Kobayashi’s, and yet I can proudly say that I have experienced so very, very much within the short stay that I’ve had here.
I do not want to spoil these last few days spent simply on the computer, so I will bid you all farewell and go have lunch with the family. I hope I have kept you decently up to date on my adventures while at my second host family. I hope that I can do the same at the coming one as well.
Yet as I say that, and as I reiterate what I wrote before, I know next to nothing about the Shiozawa’s home and the truth is that they do live up in the countryside of Nakagawa. With that in mind, there is a real possibility that they may not have internet access, or at least not a wireless one like I have had at the Sato’s and the Kobayashi’s. If that is the case, I will certainly not be able to upload this blog as often as I have been over the past seven months. I will try my very best to keep everyone current, and will try to post a short blog about my new home before too long. I am in what you might call “the home stretch” or my last three months (actually 98 days if you want to count…Mom). I know that I will experience many more life-changing adventures, but just as the first three months of 2010 have flown by, so will the next three. I am determined to make the most of them. I want to thank Rotary for the opportunity they have given me, my host families for many unforgettable Japanese experience, my school for taking me in even though I am far from their normal student, my friends for being friends, each and every one of you as readers for your continued support, and of course a huge thanks to my family for being exactly what a family should be: people you can’t imagine your life without. I will be back home in no time at all!
One last ever so unique Japanese experience that the Kobayashi’s allowed me to take part in: filleting an unagi freshwater eel. It was a thousand times harder than any fish I’ve cleaned back in Minnesota. Trying not to be too graphic, imagine trying to clean a flailing snake…then make it slimy…and then you know how even after you cut off a chicken’s head it still runs around the farm yard? yeah…SUPER difficult. But it was an opportunity that I would absolutely never have had if it weren’t for the Kobayashi’s! Very fun.