November twenty eighth
*Note: I must apologize for the lateness! The last few days on Japan were very busy, and upon arrival home I’ve been swept up into various things, including the extensive unpacking! So here is the first of the last, and hopefully the rest will follow shortly.
I started the day out as usual. A hot shower, a nice bowl of yogurt, and then a somewhat chilly walk to take Ayana the the tennis courts. Catherine came with me, and on the way we chatted with the lady that I’ve talked to previously. And I was able to say sayonara to her, since this is my last school day in Japan.
When we got home I did some of my blogging, then we sat down to watch Massan. I didn’t realize it until later, but it was my last time watching the show, since it only runs on weekdays. A lot of lasts…. After the show ended, I finished up my blogging. Then I started packing. I’d sort of been procrastinating it, but it was time to begin. It’s getting very close to my last day, and I really needed to see how much space I had in my suitcase. I feel like I’ve accumulated a lot of stuff!
After packing for a while I put on my running shoes, and headed outside. There were several training spots along the way to Rogers that I wanted to utilize. As well as a couple other good spots that I wanted to be able to train at before I left. And since tomorrow I have volleyball with Reiko in the morning, then lots of preparation to do, I had best go out today! So I hit all the spots I wanted to, and had a great training session. I managed a couple lunar eclipses, though not on the tires at the shrine park like I’d hoped to do. It was just too sketchy! But I did lots of other fun stuff instead.
When I got home, I did a little bit more packing, then helped Catherine and our (indirect) neighbour Hitomi San. They were working on a small, felt, (2-D) Christmas tree. Complete with ornaments and presents. This project was of course for Catherine’s classes. And the finished product that I saw looked great! During our work Sioko came over with bentos for us all. Mine was great! Not long after I finished, I decided to jump on my bike and head to Dōman park. After all, this was almost certainly the last chance I would have to train on grass for the next 4-5 months! And I’m glad I went, because I had a great time. I worked a lot on round off backtucks, and some fancier ground moves.
After my training I did a bit more packing. Just taking things step by step! It wasn’t too much later that I walked over to the gorilla and picked up Ayana. Another last. We walked home together, then I wrote a couple thank you notes. One to the Sensei of Yuta’s class, and one to Reiko’s family. Ayana had an after school snack, then we all hopped into the car and went to the Shukaijo. Well, after we dropped off Ayana. Atsushi fell asleep along the way, so as not to rouse him I stayed in the car with him and read while catherine taught. When the light faded I got some work on my iPad done too. Unfortunately Atsushi woke up fairly violently. Not that he was being violent, just lots of crying. I asked him if he wanted to stay in the car, then he just lost it. Poor guy! I think he though I meant we couldn’t go inside, but that wasn’t the case and I took him to Catherine. After he calmed down he just stayed with her, and sort of participated in her classes. Meanwhile I was able to talk to Ayako. We had a good conversation, and even made plans with Sioko to go out for supper. Ayako, Yuta, Sayune, and I were already planning to have supper together, but Catherine’s kids, and Sioko’s were now joining us. After the lessons were over, Catherine picked up Ayana from Pencilia, and Ayako picked up Yuta. Sioko and her kids stayed with me, and we hung out in the park. Her oldest daughter (perhaps 7) is in gymnastics, but was having trouble with cartwheels. So Sioko asked me to help her. And she actually improved! She did quite well, especially after being in partial marathon that morning!
For supper we decided to go to the Jusco food court. That way, everyone had lots to choose from. I had noodles, a delicious broth with egg, and nori in it, and for dessert a banana chocolate crepe. I guess you don’t need me to tell you how good the meal was! After we had all finished, we headed down the hall to the arcade. Ayako got Yuta, Sayune, and I a bunch of tokens and we went at it! I only played three or four games, but they were fun. The funniest one was a realistic fishing game. Where your “rod” vibrated when you got a bit, and you had to reel it in really fast! It was fun, but sort of stressful too! When the younger kids started getting tired, we split up and I said goodbye to Sioko and her kids. They headed home fairly soon after, but Ayako, Yuta, Sayune and I went downstairs to the grocery store. We chose several cool Japanese candies to add to my suitcase. I’m looking forward to eating them! We had a great time, and it was really sad to say goodbye when they dropped me off. But I’m really glad they were a part of my trip again!