Sorry for not having posted much from Tokyo, it ended up being one of our busiest sites and I didn't have access to the internet. Just wanted to let everyone know that I arrived home safely yesterday! I woke up at 8:00am on the 20th, didn't go to sleep between the 20th and the 21st, left Tokyo for Chicago at 11:00am on the 21st, and arrived in Chicago at 8:00am on the 21st. The longest day of my life to say the least, not sleeping and crossing the international date line!
Before I conclude this blog finished, I just wanted to share a little bit of what happened for JASC in Tokyo! One of my favorite activities was the reception that Colonel Tilley invited us to that I mentioned before. It was such a fabulous evening, with some of the best fireworks I've seen in my life! The reception took place in Yokohama, and we were ushered to the VIP dock that had a beautiful view of the pier. It was a smaller party with about 4 small tents, a nice buffet, and an amazing jazz band playing in the background. Colonel Tilley was so kind to us, and he really made us feel welcome! I feel so blessed to have had the opportunity to experience this.
The day after the reception, the Japan-America Student Conference hosted its most important event: Final Forum. Final Forum is where all the roundtables give 20 minute presentations to an audience of esteemed guests and alumni about what they have been learning about and discussing this past month. It was really neat to see what all the other roundtables had been working on since I had been working primarily with my own roundtable and focusing mainly on globalization, and I learned so much from my fellow delegates! After the presentation was done, we had a reception at a fancy hotel in Tokyo. From there, my roundtable went to celebrate by doing karaoke! I'm not sure if we had all this pent up energy from working on our presentation for so long, be we were able to let it all out and had such a blast together! After that we went and did purikura in Shibuya, which is a Japanese style photo booth, so I'm proud to say I was able to knock out two stereotypical Japanese activities in one evening.
Kuni and I at Yokohama North Dock, before walking over to our VIP party!
Security and Globalization at Yokohama North Dock!
Some of the fabulous fireworks.
At the post-Final Forum reception.
My wonderful roundtable, Globalization!
Sightseeing at Meiji-Jingu, and guess who we randomly ran into??? Bennies and Johnnies all over the world! (This seriously was a random encounter, in Tokyo of all places!)
So now I'm back home and happy to be taking it easy after an incredibly busy month! I'm so glad that I was able to have had this experience. Because our schedule was so tight and fixed with so many events, it was mentioned at the conference that it was more like we went to JASC than we went to Japan. We didn't get to see as much of Japan as a traditional vacation or study abroad experience might have, but I learned so so much and met so many amazing people and saw so many wonderful places! I think that this is going to conclude my blog, but I'm still reflecting on the conference so feel free to ask me any more questions and I would love to talk to you about it! Thank you so much everyone!