I think that time in Japan goes by faster than it does in the rest of the world. I mean, I'm being a little bit serious. And, I know several people here that would agree with me! Tokyo was fun. It was nice to get away and spend some time together. Sarah and I attempted to go to Disneyland on Saturday, but..they were sold out! Crazy. So, we pre-bought tickets for Sunday. Us and 70,000 people! I can not believe how crowded it was. I think we maybe rode 5 rides in the 7 or 8 hours that we were there. But, we had fun and felt like even though we didn't get to do a lot it was still worth it.
I finished up my first year as a teacher after that. My kids graduated and are now moved on to 1st grade. Graduation went really well and my kids all did so well. Luckily, I get to see all of my kids again as they come back for the after school program. However, one of my girls moved - it was really hard to say goodbye to her. Also, one of my boys decided that he didn't want to come to Friends Club. This was kind of a pretty big blow to me, because his reasoning was that he "doesn't like English." The rational part of me knows that this isn't entirely true. This boy has had a really rough last couple of weeks in school because of his parents and the drama that they brought into the school. They made it uncomfortable for everyone involved, including the little boy, and I think it drove him to not want to come. However, if he truly doesn't like English, that is kind of on me ya know? I've tried not to beat myself up over it, and I just pray that he changes his mind and decides to come back. The mom left the final decision up to him (a 6 year old, I mean..for real) but she wants him to come. It just breaks my heart because I know that our school is the only place that he is going to hear about Jesus. So, I'm just believing that he will miss his friends and decide to come back.
Another hard part of the end of the school year was that a good friend of mine moved back to America. She was my partner teacher and I really miss her. She challenged me so much this past year, and I will forever be grateful to her for how much she pushed me at times. The good news is that I will get to see her in August when Sarah and I head to Los Angeles for her wedding! I'm really excited about that!
Thailand was amazing. Maybe I will find time to blog more about that later. For now, a quick synopsis. We started the trip in Phuket, rode elephants, shopped a bit, took a boat trip to Phi Phi Islands and snorkeled (the most gorgeous beaches and water I have ever seen). We went to Bangkok and went to the Grand Palace, saw the reclining Buddha, shopped, went to a Thai show. We risked our lives riding in tuk tuks, and got ripped off several times while shopping in markets. We got some interesting, yet cheap, massages and pedicures. It was a pretty good trip.
We came back to Sendai and jumped head first into work. Several days this past week I worked 13 or 14 hour days. Thursday was opening ceremony with my new kids. Yesterday we had our first day of class (well, a half day anyway). It hit me yesterday that this class is completely different than my last. It is going to take some major adjusting, a lot of patience, and time. The kids are adorable, but..I don't quite feel like they are MY kids yet. I'm sure it will change with time. But, it was just a little bit of a slap in the face yesterday realizing that the place that I had worked so hard all year to get my kids to - listening, doing their best, treating each other nicely, sitting nice, etc. I have to start all over. I know that it will be a good year..it will just be challenging.
In more exciting news, I got a scooter! It seems like everyone in Japan has scooters. They might be dorky in America, but here it's the norm! I haven't had time to take advantage of it much, but the freedom that I feel having it is amazing! It will come in handy so much, I think! I like just being able to go whenever I want. Granted, we have a van that we can use pretty much whenever we need. But, we do have a lot of other people that use the same van. So, I am so excited to have a scooter!
Well, that sums up my life for the past month or so! I will be coming home in June for a few days and I can't wait for that! This is going to be a busy year!!