So I definitely haven't been posting as much as I had hoped. On one end it's nice to sit back and fully enjoy my time here without getting too occupied in documenting it all ASAP. But it's something I truly enjoy doing and I feel like my being here on study/staying with a host family is interrupting, or at least radically different, from my own fairly independent way of running my day-to-day life. In one way I'm glad I'm doing a homestay in a small city - I feel less like a tourist and like my experience is more genuine and on the other hand I can't wait to come back with some of my friends and family and see all I've been wanting to see and do on my own agenda and in my own style.
This weekend, however, waa a nice break. The whole group went to a "Quasi-National" park for the weekend. Onuma's only about 40-minutes from the school but it's in the mountains (and actually a dormant volcano) so it was a nice chance to do some bike riding and walking, hit up the gorgeous hotel's onsen, chill and karaoke to lots of Queen and Michael Jackson. The room was traditional-style Japanese and everything, so we were supplied with fantastically comfortable yukata to wander around the hotel in plus a pretty spacious room for four people. Dinner was traditionally Japanese with sukiyaki and tempura anda lot of things that I'm not quite sure of in both taste and what they were. Japanese food is definitely not all raw fish but last night mostly was and I can only do so much of that. And the tatami were rolled out for bed! Definitely worth the visit, plus some hilariously interesting run ins with the sensei xD