The halfway point

As of today, I have officially been in Japan for six months – meaning that my contract is up in just another six months. In honor of the occasion, all Niigata ALTs spent the past two days at a mid-year conference in Niigata City. Rosalind and I drove up from Kamo together yesterday morning and managed to find the Prefectural Education Center, despite a slight detour. The conference itself mainly consisted of some speeches and a bunch of workshops – I felt like I got a lot more out of the workshops this time, now that I’ve actually been teaching classes for a while. When you first come to Japan with the JET Program, they really bombard you with training and preparation – which is great, except for the fact that you don’t really know what you’ll be doing, so you really have no context for all of the information. Anyway, I came home with a bunch of ideas for new activities and games – can’t wait to try them out.

Last night a bunch of us went to dinner at a random but surprisingly pleasant Thai restaurant in Niigata City before hitting up the charity party for this year’s Niigata JET musical at Shame. It was great fun, especially seeing people that I hadn’t seen since the summertime. And of course, I have to do the obligatory photo blitz (making up for my recent pictoral shortcomings, you see):


Kristi, Grace, and Josie – Thai Restaurant, Niigata City
Originally uploaded by kristi-san.


Cooperative Eating – Thai Restaurant, Niigata City
Originally uploaded by kristi-san.


Aaron & Kristi – Charity Party, Niigata City
Originally uploaded by kristi-san.


Kristi & Melissa – Charity Party, Niigata City
Originally uploaded by kristi-san.


Reunited at Shame – Charity Party, Niigata City
Originally uploaded by kristi-san.


Antics by Jon & Kristi – Charity Party, Niigata City
Originally uploaded by kristi-san.


Johanna, Ros, & Kristi – Charity Party, Niigata City
Originally uploaded by kristi-san.

There are a few more here. Anyway, now I’m at home and glad to be here. Planning on getting a whole lot of sleep tonight – back to work tomorrow. Yarr….

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