Arriving Tokyo, March 20th by Xinle Su, 3月20日の記録

Today was the first day of the next 10 days we will spend together, and I really look forward to hopefully fun and fulfilling times together!

The day started at Narita Airport, where 7 of Ecoplus staff and volunteers gathered to welcome…our Yap friends! After the usual self-introductions (with a camera constantly trained on us by the TV crew… hope no one felt too nervous from the attention!), we set off for the youth hostel at Iidabashi. On the bus, everyone tucked into their bentos (packed food) after listening to Natsumi teach them how to use the chopsticks! It seemed like our Yap friends were fast chopstick-using learners so I was really impressed!


Over at the hostel, fatigue was visibly evident on everyone’s faces as they sunk back into the armchairs at the lobby. Yet their excitement got the better of them, and within an hour or so, after storing their language, we were off! Divided into three groups, we went around the area, which had many historically and culturally significant sites, such as the Imperial Palace where the royal family lives, Yasukuni Shrine, and Budoukan, an indoor arena which was built for the 1964 Summer Olympics judo competition. For my group, we walked till the East Garden of the Imperial Palace, before we headed back, as our feet grew heavy from all the walking. Kudos to everyone for persevering despite having had a long and sleepless night during the flight!

After we assembled back at the hotel, the Yap visitors finally checked in and got some rest, before assembling for dinner again. As a foreigner myself in Japan, I never got to learn the proper way of clasping your hands together and saying “Itadakimasu” before, and “Gochisousamadeshita” after dinner until today, so it was a learning experience for me as well! We spent a bit of time after that on reflections on what we found interesting, and it was fascinating for me as well to see how the Yap friends thought about the crowds, the traffic and the flowers.

The day was soon brought to a close, to allow our Yap friends to be well rested for tomorrow! If you see this the night I’m posting this, it means that you should really be sleeping because tomorrow will be really packed! Good night!





まもなく、解散でした!ヤップの子供たちが十分な睡眠を取るといいですね。もし私がこれを書き込んだ当日に読んでいるなら、それが、そろそろ寝ないと、ということですよ。今日はお疲れ様でした!おやすみなさい!:) また明日ね!

First dinner in Japan, 日本で初めての夕食

From 6 p.m. we have dinner together. Deep fried fish, cooked chicken, salad, soup and rice. Nothing similar to food in Yap, students finished dishes quickly. Tomorrow, we will go to the fish market in TSUKIJI area from 7 a.m. so students went back to their rooms after finishing reflection session.




Street walk in Tokyo, 東京で町歩き

Students spread into three groups and started to explore Tokyo. Some go to a shrine, some go to busy street.


This group enjoys street walk in Kagurazaka area, visiting shops, temples, and a super market.





Students from Yap, arrived. ヤップからの学生登場

Finally, the team arrived to Japan! At 10:20 a.m., the students and chaperons from Yap showed up to the arrival gate of Narita airport on 20th, March. Some were wearing “nunu,” or flower wreathes on their heads. Despite departing Yap in midnight, they looked excited and energetic. They are now on the bus to central Tokyo. OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA