Our trip was spectacular with much learned, too.
It took me three days to recover from the jet lag – always hits me harder traveling to the east. The DRTs had a great trip and were filled with energy on Tuesday evening as we pulled into the Pine Point School parking lot to a pack of parents! Hugs and smiles were all around as we unloaded and made sure that each DRT had their proper baggage (nothing lost!).
Our program was a huge success and we experienced much and learned lots too.
The Imperial Palace and the Diet Building
We were able to go inside the walls to the Imperial Palace! We had a tour of the grounds near the East Garden and saw the building where the Emperor greets the people of Japan on January 2 and his birthday (December 23) each year. We learned a bit of the history to this section of the Imperial Grounds – very cool!
After our tour at the Palace, we visited the Diet Building, which looks a bit like our capital building.
It has been a great season!
Hey everyone – Justin here again. This is my last report for this season. The visit from the DRTs was a lot of fun- a great way to end the season. My boat ride with the Pine Point students was my last ride of the season. The weather has been excellent these past few weeks- even though it is the rainy season, we have seen very little rain. The water has been unusually calm as well.
An overcast day greeted us but we were ready for another day
Dan – I thought Karaoke was a nice touch of entertainment and dinner.
It was a bright, hot and sunny day!
We visited the Edo Museum (and outside of the Sumo museum), McDonald’s, Shinjuku Station (largest and busiest in the world), Tokyo Government Building, Meiji Shrine, and had Sukiyake for dinner.
Mr. Williams – I found the Meiji Shrine to be a contemplative experience, particularly the walk through the Iris Garden. I found it much more warm than the Buddhist Temple that we visited on Sunday. I did not expect the temple to be found in the midst of the commercialism of the city. (this note written Sunday evening.)
We had a LONG day but it was good and everyone had fun. It was the summer solstice.
Mr. Williams – the tea ceremony has bene one of my favorite parts of this trip.
Dan – The tea ceremony was an experience like no other I have had. And, I have never seen such organized chaos at the fish market.
Duncan – The fish market was really amazing because it was organized chaos. It was really huge and surprising to find such a place in Tokyo.
Today we hiked to Nango to see the biggest tree in Japan
Today began early because the DRT team had a skype video chat with our families back at Pine Point. It was great to see everyone and share a bit of our trip. By far, our favorite event so far was the dolphin swim. (Side note from Kathleen: our DRTs are well trained, budding scientists and remembered several of the identified dolphins and saw new scars. They identified about half a dozen individual dolphins!)
The hike was 1 km each way with much uphill, downhill and some flat pathways.
Three boats carried the DRT team to observe the dolphins around Mikura this afternoon.
The stars aligned for our trip around Mikura with the DRT team. The sea was flat calm and warmer than lately (MUCH warmer than what Justin has had to endure for 4 weeks). The dolphins were all around us on several entries. We saw a mother calf group and several male sub-adult groups. We were spread over three boats for our DRT trips with 4-5 DRTs per boat. Everyone did EXCELLENT in the water and got to see the dolphins often.
Safe and sound – a visit to the Mikura school
This is a message for Pine Point parents. Everyone has arrived safe and sound here on Mikura. The ferry ride went well, and everyone looked pretty chipper. The students had breakfast and a shower and then headed up to the school to meet with the local students and teachers. So far so good! More soon!
We spent the day at the Mikura school which is HUGE, GIGANTIC. It is six floors with a beautiful gym and fly loft and a big pool.
Kathleen and the Pine Point group have arrived
This is a message for all of the parents of the Pine Point students on their way to Mikura. I just received a call from Kathleen. They have arrived at Tokyo Narita airport after an easy flight. The whole group sailed through customs and immigration and are going to be taking the next bus to TCAT (Tokyo City Air Terminal) – just over an hour away from the airport. From there, they will make their way to Takeshiba pier and will be remain there until the ferry leaves this evening.