Saturday, July 27, 2013

The Study Abroad successfully ended and ready for Fall Semester!

Study Abroad Japan has completed successfully and now the focus is on the Fall Semester!
Japanese language classes in fall are Japanese 1101, 1102, 2201, 2251. 

Japanese culture with Global classroom (real time connection with the class in Hiroshima Jogakuin University in Japan) will be Japanese 1101 every Thursday night!

Japanese 1101 will be:
Mon/Tue/Wed/Thu    10:00am-10:50am, 11:00am-11:50am
Mon/Wed                   5:00pm-6:50pm
Tue/Thu                    7:00pm-8:50pm  (taught by Imamura-sensei)

Japanese 1102 will be
Mon/Wed                   1:00pm-2:50pm

Japanese 2201 will be
Mon/Wed                   7:00pm-8:50pm

Japanese 2251 will be
Tue                           5:00pm-7:50pm

Join GTS class!

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Farewell Party, Entertainment, and Tenjin Festival Fireworks!

The commencement has been completed with presenting the Certificate of Merit from the principal.  Farewell lunch party was held with host families and each class presented the final project of Play as usual.

Pizza, Sushi, Chicken and Creme puff made everyone full and the extreme game of Watermelon Break was fun and everyone had a chance of eating a piece of watermelon.

Final night is the most famous OSAKA Tenjin Festival with super exciting fireworks!

We are now getting ready to go back to Chicago!

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Cooling down at the Kyoto Aquarium almost at the end!

A Hot and humid day continues and so we went to the Kyoto Aquarium which opened in Kyoto three years ago.

Marine animals and fish gave us some cooling feeling as well as fun during the Dolphin Show!

One more day before finishing up the program and the final night will be celebrated by big fireworks at Osaka Tenjin Festival!

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Sushi and Paid a visit to GTS' elementary school in heat!

Everyone took the final exam yesterday and today was the Sushi day on which everyone had a chance to make sushi rolls!

Some looked great and those went to teachers and other staff at school as well as GTS.

Some looked "failure" though their taste is probably good!  After Sushi, we went to Kamigamo Shrine area where GTS went to his elementary school, which was still standing great, and some public parks and small in known path ways etc.

3 more days to conclude the program and now everyone must begin packing!

Monday, July 22, 2013

Buddhist Scripture Calligraphy at Daikaku-ji Temple!

Under the hot and really humid weather, we went to Daikakuji Temple in Arashiyama Area where we visited its Monkey Park last time!

Everyone had a chance to get the experience of writing with brush of Hannya Shingyo Scripture of the Buddhism.

After visiting this temple we began walking in the Sagano bamboo area path under some rain!

There will be few more days left in the program and we will do our best!

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Slope and 250 steps took us to the Tanukidani Fudoin!

Raccoon dog statues everywhere in the Tanukidani Fudoin temple welcomed us after walking up the slope and climbing up 250 steps!

Head monk, Ryokai, who is the sempai of GTS welcomed us and explained in detail about the demon-gate of Kyoto (northeast) and its history!

About 5-6 degree lower than temperature of the city! Physical stamina is now challenging us!

Well, Ramen Museum will be waiting for us tomorrow in Osaka!

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Gion Festival and Sake Museum!! The best combination!

Today was the very day of the Gion Festival on which many floats was marching!!  It was hot and humid as usual but students could have a chance to see the best scene of huge floats' turning the street without steering wheel!

People and bamboo and water worked collaboratively and the parade proceeded smoothly!

After watching several floats, we visited Horino Memorial, the original sake distillery 100 years ago (Kinshi Masamune).

We had a chance to see Kyoto traditional style house and got a chance of tasting some products!

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Perfect Weather for Mt. Kurama!

Heated weather had a little break this afternoon so we had a perfect weather to go to Kurama Temple on top of the Mountain and went down to Kifune Shrine being famous for the water deity and also happy couple fortune!

Gion Festival is now at the peak and there will be the main parade tomorrow to which students will be led by teachers!

I will take them to Kyoto Traditional house which is now Kinshi Masamune Sake Museum!

We are getting to the end of the program but will be very eventful as usual!

Friday, July 12, 2013

Heat, Heat, Heat! Money, Monkey, Monkey!

Hot and humid weather of Kyoto recklessly continues but we challenged this by climbing up Mt. Iwata where the famous monkey park is located!

Monkeys are plunging into the pond like human kids!  They are chasing apples and peanuts that students were trying to give!

We were in the cage to see monkeys outside.  AND monkeys are observing us in the cage!

The long weekend begins tonight until Monday and some are going to Tokyo by night bus!

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Heat, Heat, Heat but Dear Deer Deer in Nara!

100F day continues here yet we are on schedule as usual! We went to meet with many deer in Nara Park!  On the way we lost some several times!

Huge Buddha is still there to welcome us and we went up to the February Hall of Todaiji from which we could view entire Nara city!!

Our trip went on to Wakakusa Hill to Kasuga Grand Shrine and back to the Train station through
the Shopping Street!

We will meet monkeys tomorrow!!

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Osaka Castle was way bigger than Hiroshima Castle!

Under the heat wave, we visited Osaka Castle which everyone could compare with Hiroshima Castle we went to a few days ago!

Not too many people in the Castle because it is Wednesday today! We lost a few people here last year under the heavy rain but we were together this year!

Enormous Buddha will wait for us tomorrow in Nara and we will do greet him no matter what!

Another hot and humid day is coming up!

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Heat wave continues! Over 100F we felt! Yet we move forward!

Heat wave still continues and the rainy season officially ended yesterday.  So this over 100F day is now normal here in Kyoto. 

Many areas in Japan had many people passing out because of this rather sudden heat!  COD group did challenge against this heat even by climbing through thousands of Torii gates in Fushimi Inari Grand Shrine.

Our group this year keeps up with me well so we could reached Tofukuji temple over the mountain before closing of the temple!  Last visit was three years ago as we could not make it in time last couple of years!

Our exploration will continue tomorrow and the day after by going to Osaka Castle and Todaiji temple in Nara!

Indeed, this trip should give students PE credits!

Monday, July 8, 2013

Heat wave carried us to the Meiji Snack Factory!

Real Kyoto hot and humid summer began today and felt hotter than our body temperature!  The rainy season seems to be ended and we are now in real summer Kyoto. 

The air conditioned train took us to the station from which we could walk to the Meiji Snack Factory being famous for some snacks such as, Karl and Kinoko no Yama.

We got some snack packs for souvenir and went through actual factory line together.

Very hot and humid but smiles of the factory character tried to ease our being tired from heat!

NO rain seems to be in the rest of this week!  Yay!

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Hiroshima One Day Trip accomplished!

We were "lucky" to have an opportunity to visit Hiroshima even for a few hours to hear from A-Bomb survivor about what happened on THAT very day!

It took 5 hours by bus via highway to get to Hiroshima.  On its way, we had a chance to enjoy service area in Japanese style!  We were roughly about for 4 hours in Hiroshima before heading back to Kyoto!

We did have an ambitious plan so we shrunk the plan and visit Hiroshima Castle besides the Peace Memorial Hall.

Students will have a chance to compare between small Hiroshima Castle and Huge Osaka Castle soon!

The mission completed at 10:30pm!  It was a long day but a good day!

Friday, July 5, 2013

First Heated Humid day visited us!

Because of some rain (not really complete rain), we had a very humid day like sauna today!  It really reminds us of being in summer Kyoto!

Newly designed and re-opened Kyoto City Zoo brought us some smiles and everyone got some comfort from innocent animals which also experience this same kind of heat!

We are getting ready to go to Hiroshima which we could not visit last two years due to extreme weak dollars.  Fortunately we could visit Hiroshima as a day trip, which is hard but interesting!

Wow, two weeks have already passed!

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Occasional Heavy rain but the mission completed!

Really heavy rain but we could avoid it by getting on the bus.  By the time we get to the destination it stopped raining!

We could proceed to the largest Shrine garden in Kyoto at Heian Jingu Shrine.

Today is the first day of the national election for upper house in congress!  So it will be really lively city atmosphere until the voting day of 7/21!

Well, the weather could be worse in the rainy season and we are still on the right truck!

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Supposed to be raining but we were lucky!

It was quite lucky for us not to be caught in rain this afternoon to the Nijo Castle!

Students had experience of walking on the squeaking corridor in the main hall before enjoying the garden walk in the castle.

The rain seems to be waiting for us tomorrow but hopefully rain in the middle of the night and get cleared tomorrow morning! 

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Seimei Shrine famous for medieval Exorcism in Japan and KIMONO

Our afternoon excursion took us to Seimei Shrine enshrining the famous medieval Exorcist.  Just 3 minutes walking away is the Nishijin Textile Center where kimono fashion show is held.

Several beautiful kimono were introduced by kimono fashion models on the stage.  Another cloudy day today and it seems that we will have rainy days next couple of days.

But so far we have been lucky to have cooler days!  Hope it continues!

Monday, July 1, 2013

Eikando Zenrinji Temple to Nanzenji Temple meeting GTS' mom!

Right in front of Kitano Tenmangu Shrine, City bus took us to Eikando Zenrinji temple from which we could see the eastern center of Kyoto city! 

In the Eikando, our group bumped into with Bowling Green State University (Ohio) group led by Prof. Akiko Jones!  What a coincidence!

We will probably meet with them in Hiroshima as their schedule is exactly the same as ours!

From Eikando, we could walk through Nanzenji temple and Kyoto Canal to get to the bus stop in front of Heian Jingu Shrine Big Torii Gate!

On the way students had a chance to meet with GTS' mom to greet with each other!

Another great breezy day has passed