I apologise for not updating last night - we had rather a big night out...
So, to catch up on the last couple of days... Wednesday morning saw us visit the local High School for a lesson in wearing kimono and participating in Sadou, or Tea Ceremony. It was lovely - kimono are tricky to get on and off but look great once you're done, and the tea ceremony was quite elegant. We returned to uni, did lunch, and then were off to a tennis lesson. I should be labelled as armed and dangerous when equipped with a tennis racquet, as I nearly took off one girl's head about 3 times during the lesson, by the simple expedient of not aiming when I hit the ball. It was fun but I'm pretty hopeless at ball games in general.
After tennis, we met the Kendo club for a lesson. I've finally found a sport I don't suck spectacularly at!! It was tremendous fun! We armoured up, were given a shinai (a practise sword made of bamboo, constructed in such a way that the bamboo lengths compress when used to deal a blow, so the most damage you do to your opponent is the occasional bruise) and taught some basic strokes. Then we were turned loose to spar with the club girls, who are years more experienced than we are. It was great fun. At the end of the lesson, we had a 3 on 3 match - Trav, Qweni (one of the Fijian girls) and I against Stephanie, David and Yumin. It was tonnes of fun!! My arms ached from swinging so much, my knees ached from kneeling so often on a hard floor, but I was elated! Wednesday night saw us up quite late watching some random show about samurai and geisha in the edo period, or something. It was interesting but far too long-winded and convoluted for my tastes.
Yesterday morning started off with a visit to a primary school to meet some of the year 1 and 2 students. We were split up and went off to a classroom each, where we taught the kids some Australian games, were taught some Japanese games, did some Q&A with the kids and had lunch. Japanese school lunches are excellent - healthy, hot and fresh, and really well organised! No mad crush at the tuckshop where everyone pushes and shoves to be at the front of the line and get served first. Lunch yesterday was Miso soup, a bean and vegetable stew thingy, some rice, a mandarin and a little bottle of milk. The food is delivered from the kitchens in a couple of boxes, wheeled in by kitchen staff, and served up by the day's lunch monitors. Each kid brings from home a little bag containing a napkin and some chopsticks, and the school provides everything else. It's just fantastic!
So, after returning from the school, we went off in a couple of groups. Trav, David, Ef and I went off to the 99 yen shop and bought drinks, while the others decided to get some computer time in. I bought a can that turned out to be alcoholic green tea. It was vile!! I usually like green tea but I hate canned green tea and the alcohol just made it worse. It was awful and gross and disgusting!
After our experiment with strange Japanese alcohol, we met up at the station, went to the supermarket and bought more drinks (88yen, about $1.50 AU per can) and then went off to Maccas. We bought some burgers (100 Y buys a hamburger) and sat down, eating our burgers and drinking our alcopops. It was... totally random, really. When we were done, we went off to an izakaya. Izakaya are Japanese style bars, quite cheap and lots of fun. We sat down, nibbled on interesting foods and drank quite heartily - and danced the Nutbush down the middle of the pub! The whole night out probably cost us about $50 each, if that, and I got quite plastered. Can't speak for the others, but I know I was pretty maggot when I got home. Feel a little worse for wear today, not exactly hungover but a little fragile lol.
Our welcome party is tonight; we spent this afternoon going over our plan for the evening, rehearsing, getting a CD with our song on it made up and whatnot. The night'll be over by about 8pm, so I might be able to update afterwards, fingers crossed.
Okay, so that's my exciting fun last couple of days. I'm definitely going to try and get into a Kendo club in Brisbane if I can, it's so much fun!