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This past week has been hectic in the extreme; on Thursday we had a conference in Isesaki for all first year JETs where Kenji and I both were presenting on teaching materials. Then on Friday after my hoikuen class I joined with the other ALTs in Fujioka to help out at Hirai ES with Kenji to simulate a trip to Kamakura for the 6th graders. And after that we had a lot of events during the weekend. It is a three day weekend, but it feels like another whole week has gone by!

Coming back from Isesaki, the sun was really neat through the clouds

Flowers and a butterfly at my hoikuen on Friday!

Kids saying “hi” as we arrived at Hirai ES on Friday afternnon

The view from the window, and Allen’s drawing of Kamakura

The kids walk around Kamakura, and one of their assignments is to talk with foreigners in English, so we were pretending to be tourists in Kamakura for the kids!

Friday night Kenji wasn’t feeling well, but I went to Takasaki with Ken and Sarah and had a good time!

Saturday we woke up a bit late, but decided we wanted to go check out some flowers. One good place for Cosmos flowers is in Isesaki, so we drove out there and also got dinner afterward at the Brazilian restaurant we’ve eaten at before.

Uroko-gumo, literally “fish scale clouds” are a type of cloud you can see in fall in Japan. This isn’t the greatest picture, but further into fall you can get some good ones. I’ll be on the lookout!

Coming up on the shrine and the cosmos fields… I thought it might be hard to find, but nope, it is pretty obvious we’re in the right place!

Some views of the flowers and torii gates… the light was kinda terrible, so these aren’t great

Some of Kenji

Close ups, the second pictures is my absolute favorite!

Artsy iPhone pictures!

Dinner that night!

Sunday during the day was the Basketball group BBQ, a sumo event in Fujioka, and Maebashi Matsuri in the evening. We couldn’t do everything, so we skipped sumo, but made it to BBQ and the tail-end of Maebashi’s festival.


Lots of people came!

Shiitake mushrooms, my favorite!
Close up of the beer!

Kenji has some good group pictures, I’ll have to grab those from him. Then, on to Maebashi Matsuri!

Maebashi station

Walking towards the matsuri

Mmmmm, jyagabata- (potato and butter), soooooo good!

We found the mikoshi still going!

But by that time people had mixed up and joined other groups, so the jackets don’t match anymore, which I thought was kinda cool!

All the different colors were neat!

Back down the street

Today, Monday, is a holiday, so our city had a Festa we went to in the morning.

Shinmachi festa

Standing in line for food stalls, there were already tons of people at the start

We grabbed some Thai food

There were bands playing, lots of food, things for kids to do, and a flea market, but I didn’t stay long. It was hot today!

The morning glories are still nice! Soon these will be gone