I’ve just arrived at my living quarters in Okazaki.
It looks kind of small, though it’ll do for now. The thing to get used to is sleeping on that futon and making sure I don’t fall off. Other than that, it’s at a very nice residential area, and fairly close to where I’ll be taking some classes and supermarkets, etc.
Speaking of which, I’ve already noticed that there are a lot of signs, but not in English. I think I’m going to need to learn how to read at least simple Japanese very quickly.
Talk about culture shock. Then again, that’s exactly why I’m here.
So I’m actually really tired right now. I’ve been traveling for over 26 hours, with very little sleep. This is what happens when you fly half-way across the world. Long story short, 3 hours of waiting at O’Hare, a 14.5 hour flight, 4.5 hours of waiting in Incheon, a 2 hour flight, and then about a 2 hour bus ride into Okazaki. Sounds like fun huh?
This being said, I haven’t had a great chance to take very good pictures since I’ve been on the move the whole time. However, during the Bus Ride, I was able to get a picture of a driving range at a rest area (there was also a rest area with a Ferris wheel but I was too slow to get that one).
I already notice that there’s a lot of diversity in Japan, as the bus ride drove us through some nice green hills, some rivers, cities with tall buildings, and many factories, not to mention the Chubu Centrair Airport which is built in the middle of a bay. Anyways, I’ll try to get better pictures up next time (after I sleep for a long, long time). I think that through my time here, I’ll definitely be able to learn a lot about the unique Japanese culture.
After a year spent in “soft-lockdown” at home in Atlanta, and as Caltech students prepared to finally return to campus, I was aboard an eight hour flight towards Edinburgh, Scotland. Since my junior year plans were interrupted by the virus who shall not be named, I’m spending my first term of senior year studying abroad through the Caltech - Edinburgh University International Exchange program. I’ve only been here just over a week yet have been exposed to so many new people, perspectives, foods, and classes.
When the announcement was first made that fall term was going to be online, I started talking to friends and looking for places to live. We were debating locations around the country: California, Florida, New York, etc.. there were plenty of options. Then it suddenly hit me, what is stopping us from going to Hawaii, covid numbers were better and a two week quarentine would ensure that numbers stayed down… I proposed this to my friend and we agreed it would be an amazing experience, but we didn’t want to get out hopes up. A month or so later we still haven’t decided where to live, Hawaii seemed too far and too difficult to plan. But we couldn’t get the idea out of our heads. We spent some time looking into plane tickets, places to stay, etc… and it actually didn’t seem so impossible after all. A couple weeks later and we were arriving here on the big island!
I visited Amsterdam for a brief two and a half days during my vacation. There were a few landmarks and neighborhoods I wanted to checkout, but did not plan the visit in detail. As such, when it came down to destinations with ticketed entries, I had to skip most of them, since they did not have day-of tickets left for sale. Fortunately, I was able to walk around most of the city and it was generally a good time.