Sunday, March 23, 2008

Spring vacation

Friday was the last day of the school year, at least for me. In the town I work for, there is a special school for troubled kids. I'm not sure if it's because they have family problems, or behavioral problems of the kids themselves - probably a combination of the two - but the students live there. There aren't many, only about 15 or 20 students, and nearly as many teachers there. Tracey and I go only very occasionally, Friday was the 3rd time for us. The last two times we played soccer and visited the festival held on the school grounds, but this time we went to Enoshima Aquarium in Fujisawa city.

It's fairly small, but pretty good for one not in a huge city. A few weeks ago I went to Hakkejima Sea Paradise, and while Enoshima lacks a ginormous whale tank with beluga whales and roller coaster rides, they do well with what they've got. The construction is really impressive, there's a giant central tank full of schooling fish, stingrays and various other fishes. The entrance is on the 2nd floor and winds around the central tank, giving you small glimpses into it while showing various aquatic ecosystems around Japan, then finally opens up into a giant glass wall that shows the whole tank. It's pretty breathtaking for a town of 400k people.

So we went with the kids and got in free (teachers get free entrance, yay!), then ran all the way to the other side for the dolphin show. After that was a more leisurely walk back around the aquarium and then hanging out at the beach right next to the aquarium. That part was still rather cold and windy.

And that finished my last day of school, how tough. But it's not all fun and games yet. Tomorrow I've gotta go to the immigration office in Yokohama and suffer through the visa renewal process. After, I'll meet Sayaka for lunch and walk around Chinatown, though it's supposed to rain, which sucks.

Future plans are going to visit Ana and Damien on the 27th for the rest of March. I can't wait to see them again, it'll be so strange to hang out in Japan again. Crazy. Right after I get back, I'm going to meet a friend of my friend Aaron, Drew, and his wife who will be visiting Japan. I'm going to take them up to Tokyo and show them around Akihabara, maybe go to a maid cafe, and then have dinner and drinks somewhere. Probably Shibuya. But I'm gonna have to ask around where the good places are because my idea of exotic up there is going to this great English pub and having a bunch of specialty brews.

I'll have some days off at the start of April, school won't get going again until after the 7th, so I was thinking about doing a bike trip. I wanted to ride out to see Ana and Dam-o, but 300km is too far to ride in such a short time. Maybe I'll try to ride halfway, there's a famous castle about that distance. Three days oughta do it.

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