The descriptions are short because there's so many of them and I'm overwhelmed. Also, these are posted in the order that they're taken, as usual, but that means that they're not really categorized. Whoops.
Early October we went apple picking. A friend of mine works at a conversation school, and one of his students has an apple farm. We harvested the apples for him, and he gave us a few free and cooked us lunch. It was fun.
Random picture of the city. This is where I board the bus.
Random picture of a mountain. It was pretty.
One day I had an elementary school visit in the morning, and had to go back to my regular school in the afternoon. I thought I would take a shortcut through the rice fields, but really it took me to a dead end and I had to climb a little hole and walk along the ditch to get back. As I was walking here though, I kept on thinking there was a cat or something following me, and I soon realized that with every step I took, tons of grasshoppers were jumping from the grass to the rice, rustling the stalks.
The building on the far right is my school. I walk this road everyday, and I'm worried that in winter the wind is going to be brutal.
One night downtown there was a guy making awesome balloon animals for however much you wanted to pay. He worked fast, but it still took a really long time to make
a Pink Panther! He used black, white, yellow, pink, red, and clear. It was very impressive.
I think there is a disproportionate number of pictures of mountains on this blog. But look! The clouds were in the wrong place that day!
"The Coffee Milk"
On our way to Akita! To have naked hot spring time, samurai time, and ice cream with honey time.
Outside the hot spring. This is one of the few places where you can do mixed bathing, if you want. Gasp! How scandalous. My host parents took me here a few years ago.
I liked their refrigeration system.
At the samurai village. This is a picture of something very Japanese. At major tourist destinations, train stations, etc, the location often has its own unique stamp. You can collect them as a record of the places you've been.
Sometimes Japan is surprisingly lax about image.
And sometimes not.
At the entrance to the hospital.
A shop where they sold outfits for festivals. I was looking for ninja gear for Halloween.
This is also something very Japanese. You get your picture taken in a little photo booth and decorate it here and make little stickers. I'm sure you guys have seen the stickers, but this is the process.
Outside of Ryusendo Cave.
And inside of Ryusendo Cave.
This lake had a visibility of 35 m or something crazy like that.
How to take apart the shrimp you get in your soup.
This was really random. It was at a department store, and they were grinding rice. But it was really cool. I stood there and stared for a long time.
A tea mug telling you which foods are EPA approved.
The board I made for school.
A pet store in the mall. You're not allowed to hold the dogs, and they're often chewing on the wooden partitions. It always makes me sad.
For my friend's birthday, she wanted to go on a boat ride in a gorge. So we did.
Throw a rock in the hole and your wish comes true.
A foggy day at the elementary school. The clouds were rolling along the ground all sinister like.
Another view of my way to work. This is by the bank. Facing ahead,
I took this from the copy room at my work. I was so impressed with the way the students' footprints aligned in that Y shape from the end of PE. They all didn't just run in the building, they merged single file!
Another nature day.
But the water was amazingly smooth.
And on the way back, there was a little stand where they had adult vending machine everything. There was a seperate machine where they scanned your drivers license to make sure you're 18. No employees, just machines. It was weird.
Also, have you guys been following the story of the Ichihashi guy over there? He killed a British English teacher a couple of years ago near Tokyo, and then fled from the cops barefoot, and they've been looking for him ever since, with posters everywhere with his old face. They just caught him recently, and he had had a bunch of plastic surgery done. Him getting plastic surgery is actually what did it, because the clinic released a picture of what his new face was which renewed public interest in the whole thing. I don't understand how he first got plastic surgery though. Did the first doctor not know? Anyways, it's been almost three years and it's big news that they caught him, and I'm really relieved. Apparently now in police custody he's refusing to eat. It's a sad situation all around though.