Oh what have I gotten myself into. I am in a small section of a village called Ōgatsu, which is itself an hour or more outside of the city in which it is incorporated, Ishinomaki. Ishinomaki, a small city, is itself an hour or more’s bus ride to Sendai, the capital of Miyagi Prefecture, and the largest city in the entire Tōhoku Region. I am in the far, far country. There is very little to do here except work, and there is a lot of work. The job starts early in the morning and ends late at night every single day. I don’t think I realized what I am getting myself into here. I’m learning every day and I’m practicing and improving my Japanese too, but it is going to be much more physical work than I thought. I guess I never really put together that an internship is a full time job, you know? The food is good and I’m adjusting better than I thought I would be to it. We eat oysters at a rate that would be ridiculously expensive in America. I think maybe the biggest struggle so far has been the clothes and the weather. Because I am so rural I couldn’t find reliable weather information- and it is very, very cold. The highs have been resting mostly below 60, and the sun rises at 4:30, so by 4 PM it is already starting to cool down for the day. I have only two light jackets and far too many pairs of shorts. It’s taking some creative laundry scheduling to adjust. And on top of that the work is much dirtier than I thought it would be. I brought nice, cute, work clothes. Ones that I would wear to my job on ResStaff in the dorms and would look nice in. None of them work here. If I ever knew I was a city kid way out of their element, now would be the time. But in the end, the people are good, and the scenery is beautiful, so here’s to five more weeks!
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