Monday, 24 October 2016

My Neighbour Totoro - film review

The film "Totoro" came out in 1988. The director was Hayao Miyazaki. This film is a fantasy film.

There are two girls, Satsuki, Mei, and a monster "Totoro" in this film.One day Mei wanted to give a corn to mom in the hospital, but she got lost. Satsuki could not find her, so she asked Totoro to help find Mei. Totoro called "Nekobus", which took Satsuki to Mei. Then Nekobus took them to Mom in hospital. Everybody was happy.

I think everything is good in this film. I like the music, design and the story. I don't think anything is bad. Everybody likes this film because Totoro is a fantastic character.

Yuto (12)

Saturday, 22 October 2016

Yuka, my best friend

Yuka's Toca Hair Salon make-over!
This is a photo of my friend, Yuka.

She's 31 and she's Japanese. She lives in Matsumoto. She's a good nurse.

She has long, orange hair with green & purple highlights, and she has dark eyes. She's always kind.

She loves snowboarding and does it very well. She goes to the mountains many times every winter.

I like her because I'm relaxed with her.


Friday, 21 October 2016

Introducing my best friend, Megumi

Megumi's Toca hair salon make-over!
This is a photo of my friend, Megumi.

She's 34 and she's Japanese. She lives in Matsumoto city. She's a HCU nurse.

She has a bob haircut. She has orange & yellow hair & dark eyes. She is intelligent and always funny.

She loves music and she likes drinking alcohol. She can cook meals very well and she can play the piano. We like eating when she cooks dinner.

I like her because I enjoy her company.


Wednesday, 12 October 2016

More thoughts on my trip to England

English: The City of London skyline as viewed ...
The City of London skyline 
I found many things about England through this trip.

England is a racial melting pot. The air of London is stale. Many people in London use bikes for commuting.

There aren't any high mountains in England. The underground in London is smaller than Tokyo's. There are so many Chinese tourists in London & the Cotswolds.

When we were driving on the motorway, we can see many Japanese cars, but German cars are large.

In England people drive on the left. In the morning & evening, London has traffic jams. London is a very busy city.

Post offices in London sell sweets & stationery.

There are old & new buildings in London, and new buildings are now under construction.

A road sign in Kent, reminding traffic to driv...
Keep Left
In London they are parking on one side of the road, in high-class residential areas too.

Prices in London are higher than Tokyo.


Sunday, 9 October 2016

Postcard from...London, England.

Dear Mr. George-sensei,

I am here in London. Very exciting city.

Yesterday I rode British Pullman. There, I met British Gentleman and his smart wife.

An today visited Cotswolds, I saw beautful old styled thatched cottage.

I have to go back to Japan two days after. I want to come back again. Bon (cat's name) is waiting for our back.

From Takeyo

Thursday, 6 October 2016

Postcard from...Yamagata, Japan

It was a pleasure to spend an afternoon with Ryan Hagglund's experienced staff at MY English School in Yamagata on Tuesday. It IS a long journey from Matsumoto, whichever way you slice it, but being able to hit the ground running makes the day easy to prepare for. Throw in a couple of pizzas and the odd donut...
SEs using Quizlet Live

Using Quizlet Live has proved to be a really enjoyable tool to get teachers working together quickly, and discussing aspects of eg performance feedback that might ordinarily not strike much of a cord. Getting examiners to argue the toss on courtesy or security for example, usually takes quite a lot of doing.

Grateful that even a teacher on paternity leave would give up some of that time to keep his credentials current, and for everyone's time in a week obviously crammed with interesting PD. Kudos to Ryan on pointing his school & staff in a very professional direction. Delighted we can continue to contribute to that bench-marked success with Cambridge Young Learners.

Monday, 3 October 2016

Postcard from ...Tainan, Taiwan

Hi Luna students! Did you miss me?

I made a very quick weekend trip to the southern Taiwanese city of Tainan. I went to meet some friends and to do some exploring. What did I discover?

Well, the local temples are very busy places, especially around the new moon (which was Saturday night) and the full moon. They are also noisy parades, with fire-crackers in the streets, music & girls pole-dancing on the backs of trucks! The architecture and colours reminded me a lot of Okinawa's Shuri-jo, which is actually not too far away. Another Japanese connection is obviously the pre-war occupation.

Tainan traffic is mad; the food is terrific. I enjoyed myself tremendously, but recommend much more time than a weekend. Two red-eye journeys in as many days means my head is spinning!

Hope you've all done your homework?!


Tuesday, 27 September 2016

Postcard from... San Francisco, California, U.S.A.

Hi Jim-sensei,

I'm in San Francisco. I got a chance to stay here for two nights during business trip.
Before I came here I thought it is sunny and warm. It is sunny, but windy and COLD than I expected.
It is like early winter!
I went to some view points and took pictures.
I'll share them once I return!

From Tomoko

Saturday, 24 September 2016

After reading- The quest

If you had a boat...
Write about a place you would like to visit by yacht

If I had a boat, I would like to visit the various horbours in Japan.
First of all, I would visit the famous harbours in the side of Japanese sea.
I would visit Wakkanai city in Hokkaido first and Otaru city next. In this way, I would go southward from Hokkaido to Okinawa.
The fish food is very delicious in the harbours in the side of Japanise sea. I would like to enjoy fising and eat the delicious fish a lot.

After going southward to Okinawa, I would take a lisence of scuba diving there.
Since the sea and fish in Okinawa is very beautiful, I would like to enjoy the scuba diving.

After enjoying scuba in Okinawa, I would move toward the north along the horbour in the side of the pacific ocean.
In the horbour in the side of the pacific ocean, I would like to enjoy the beach.
In the beach, I would drink beer and sleep to get sunburnt under the sunshine.
This will be the most enjoyable holidays.

However, it is very hard to realize these dream. I will need a lot of holidays, money and, of course, my yacht.
I also have what I have to take priority more a lot.
If I win a lottery, I would like to try to these travel by yacht.

Monday, 19 September 2016

Mary Read - a very wanted pirate!

There is a reward for Mary Read's capture (even though she might be a bit old now!)

Posted for Nanako

Thursday, 15 September 2016

Doh, a deer. My train hit a deer...

A nightmare journey I remember was three years ago, when I was only 13, going to Chiba to meet my granny.
Tokyo-Station-2005-7-21 5
Tokyo station - scary at night

I left Matsumoto at 6:45 by train. About three hours later, the train stopped at Tokyo. I waited inside the train for about fifteen minutes, but it didn't move. And then I heard an announcement that the train had crashed with a deer. The train couldn't move for about two hours. So I decided to take another train, but they'd all stopped already. I was too young, so I stayed at the station.

When I phoned my mum, she said to wait in the station. My mother's sister lives in Yokohama, so she came to Tokyo station to pick me up. In the end, I stayed in Yokohama for a night, and the next day I went to Chiba. I was very glad to see my grandmother and to be safe. The journey had taken 14 boring hours instead of four!

Posted for Tomoro

Wednesday, 14 September 2016

Wanted: Dead or Alive

Please apply to Yuto for the Reward - proof of capture required.

Monday, 12 September 2016

A postcard from Hong Kong

Dear Damian

I'm staying in Hong Kong for four days, and today I'm going to go back to Japan.

I'm very excited!
I love the cluttered buildings, good foods and the beer cheaper than Japan.
I took many photos. They were more beautiful than sold postcards. So this is picture card.
Did you already leave Japan?

I look forward to meeting you in November.


Saturday, 27 August 2016

Apollo 13 & Ken Mattingly

Ken Mattingly did not fly with Apollo 13
Write about his NASA career after this mission

In 1972, Ken got the chance to fly with Apollo 16 as a command module pilot. It was two years after Apollo 13 came back to Earth. Apollo 16 was the tenth manned space flight mission and he flew with John Young and Charles Duke. During the mission, Ken performed the extravehicular activity to collect the film and date packages from the module. He was the outside of module for about one hour for this activity. In total, he spent 126 hours on the lunar orbit. After his mission, he received the NASA distinguished service medal.

After he returned to Earth with Apollo 16, Ken involved in the space shuttle development project. In 1982, he got on the space shuttle named Columbia with Henry. It was launched from Kennedy Space Center in Florida. He and Henry did a lot of experiments during the flight. He got on another flight in 1985.

Hit total time in space is 21 days 4 hours and 34 minutes and retired from NASA in 1985. He worked at several private sectors and is now working at System Planning and Analysis in Virginia.

Monday, 22 August 2016

The Black Cat - expenses claim

This is breakdown of my expenses for May investigation.

If you have any unclear issue, please let me know.

Sometimes, I needed to arrive at each place before the murder or the Black Cat arrived at, so I needed to use air plane because air ticket was expensive, but I could get there earier.

  • Air ticket from Cairo to Beirut airport 
  • Taxi fee from Beirut airport to docks 
  • Air ticket from Beirut to Athens 
  • Taxi fee from Athens airport to Piraeus 
  • Ticket of Boat “The Syria” from Piraeus to Venice 
This ticket is the one for first class because I thought first class ticket would be allowable to go into any place/any floor of boat and it would be easy to look for a murder who killed Pearson.

  • Water taxi fee from Venice dock to railway station 
  • Train ticket from Venice to Rome 
  • Hotel fee at Rome 
  • Air ticket from Rome to Cairo 
  • Taxi fee from Cairo airport to the flat where Salahadin stays 

  • Taxi fee of round move between Beirut city and Jusef’s café because I needed to tell Jusef about Borkman’s death and his message. 

This time, I could protect very very valuable antiquities of Egypt and my investigation is worh to pay these a little expensive expenses. Thank you for your understanding.

Famous ships

Famous shipsWrite about another ship with an interesting story

Speaking of famous ship, British Luxury Liner Titanic comes to my mind.  It was filmized many times all over the world, but I watched “Titanic” only which was released in 1997 and got the Academy Award for Best Picture.  At that time, I focused on the love story and did not remember the ship itself well.  This is a good chance to investigate the ship.

Titanic was the largest and fastest passenger ship at that time.  It left England to New York on April 10th, 1912.  There were more than 2,200 passengers and crews on the ship.  It struck an iceberg in North Atlantic 5 days later and sank.  About 1,500 people died due to the accident.

After reading The Black Pearl
In the meantime, about 700 people were saved.  Millvina Dean from England was 9 months old and the youngest among the passengers.  She boarded the ship with her parents and brother.  Her father died, but she, her mother and brother survived and got back to England after the accident.  She did not remember the accident and had not been known that she was the passenger of Titanic until her mother told her when she was 7 years old.  

In her later years, she lived in a nursing home, but she auctioned off the items related to Titanic to make a payment.  Leonardo DiCaprio and Kate Winslet who played the leading role in “Titanic” supported her on the payment.  She died in 2009 and was the last survivor of Titanic passengers.

Friday, 12 August 2016

After-reading - an e-mail to a friend



Date:25 December

Hello from Germany!!

I'm staying with a family in Munich. I came here 1 December. My host family are Frank, Eva and two children. They are a very nice family.

In the middle of December we went to Nuremberg. It took about an hour from Munich. It is famous for Christmas market. There were many shops of Christmas ornaments. I bought some nice ornaments for you. Frank bought a big Christmas tree and put it inside the house. They put colorful ornaments on it. They also sent cards to friends and family.

The Christmas holiday has begun from yesterday: Christmas Eve. People stopped working early and drank together. Children left a stocking for Santa Clause when they went to bed. Frank and Eva went to church at midnight. They listened to the Christmas story and sang carols.

Today is Christmas Day. Two children wake up really early and found nice presents around the tree. Before we started to eat Christmas dinner, Frank pulled crackers. It made a loud noise. Dinner was turkey with potatoes and a Christmas cake.

Everyone looks happy. I've just remembered my family 's Christmas Day when my children were in elementary school. Alice,my dog was still young and cute. It was the happiest time in my life. Of course I have a good time today and I will enjoy my life from now too!

See you!


Posted for Olga

Thursday, 11 August 2016

Anne Boleyn writes

Dear Henry's next wife,

I am Anne Boleyn, Henry's second wife. I have been married to him for three and a half years. But, it is over now. I have to die soon.

I have been thinking what was wrong with me. Before I married Henry, I had wanted to be a Queen very much. I had done everything to marry him and he had broken with the Pope to marry me.

We were happy at first and we had a daughter, Princess Elizabeth. She was very smart and beautiful. But, he wanted a son, a future King. Recently I miscarried a boy, and he was very angry, although it was not my fault. He dislikes me now, and I have to die.

I recommend you to have many children, especially boys. Then he will be satisfied and he will not kill you at least.

Always remember, your husband is a King of England. He is very powerful. He can do whatever he wants. I tried to control him, that was my fault. So, you should be obedient, hide your true feeling inside of your heart. This is my advice to you.

I beg you one thing as a mother. It is about Elizabeth, my daughter. Please be kind to her. Have mercy, please.

God bless you.

Anne Boleyn

Posted for Yasumi

Wednesday, 10 August 2016

A letter to your music teacher

Dear Mrs Lark,

How are you doing now? Once I was a student on Tuesdays. Do you remember my name? I'm Tony.

I left school when I was thirteen. Fortunately I worked on a farm. A farm's work was better than the shops and the factory work. I worked very hard at Mr Wood's farm. Mr Wood was like a father to me and taught a lot.His wife cooked avery good country food.

One day I found the old piano in a garage. Nobody taught me, but I could make music. I rememberd those wonderful Tuesday mornings. Your fingers flew like birds up and down the keys of the piano. We sang like birds, too. The piano changed my life.

Linda, Mr Wood's daugther taught me to read music. Mr Gordon, the teacher at the little village school also taught me hou to play the piano. And then I won the music competition. I was happy everyone supported me. I'm going to the College of Music for three years.Mr and Mrs Wood will send me there.

I'm really appreciate that I had wonderful Tuesday mornings.

Sincerely yours,


Posted for Hiroko

Monday, 8 August 2016

Saturday Night Live! Luna goes to town (again) - Bon Bon slideshow

And now we bring you a super-funky slideshow from Bon Bon!

Like it? Download it for yourself & show your friends right here - or just subscribe to Jim George on Youtube and keep up with all our audio-visual delights!

Keep up with us on Facebook too - right here

Another Bon Bon Boogie Night!

The first week of August, hot and steamy, drew to a close; Matsumoto's streets gave way to pedestrians and party-goers! Once again, tens of thousands of people turn out to dance the city streets and join in the fun...and right in the middle is little Luna, led by our merry band of mini-dancers in their smart red t-shirts...and they kept dancing all night long!

We had time to warm up, on Eki-mai, with nobody around - same as last year...but our good friends from the Nagano Pref. Children's Hospital were in front of us. Not sure if they enjoyed the special jelly Damian & Jim had concocted. Contents? Trade secret - but 'special'.

It seemed like a quiet night, and thankfully not too many idiots trying to barge through our group this year. Main problem was Alex occasionally getting too close to the white line in the middle of the road!

 Along the way we bumped into old friends & students dancing with other groups, and others joining us once their more boring teams went home early :) We added a Spanish coterie to our tails for the final swing around the whatever park, behind Yohashira shrine, and later heard stories of Seville & Barcelona while we warmed down over cold drinks!

Thanks everyone who joined us and made Bon Bon 2016 a lovely night out. We think you are great, and we love making this evening the centerpiece of our summers.

You will find all our pictures from the evening at the link below

Friday, 5 August 2016

After-reading - A trip to England

I visited to England in October from 10th to 17th 2014, with my friend Junko. It was JTB (travel agent) group tour. Fright was Virgin Atlantic from Narita to Heathrow. We stayed 2 days in Manchester, next 2 days were in Coventry, last 2 days were in London. The first day We went to Haworth in Yorkshire. Bronte sisters are famous. We visited their home and walked the town. felt nostalgia. Old drugstore I bought mint soups. It was nice. and moved to The Lake District. There were very beautiful area. We could take a ship in Windermere Lake. We went for walked lakeside, and went to Peter Rabbit 's shop. I bought a picture book for my doughter. Of couse the weather changed to rain.

Next day We moved Liverpool. visited Liverpool Cathedral. and went to The Cavern Club. When The Beatles were not famous they played here everynight, the stage still now and visited Chester Cathedral. We bought souvenir at the Rows. The Rows were very old a two-story building. Street was very nice!

Next day We moved Cotswolds visited three small villages. William Morris said 'Here is most beautiful village in England' to Bilberry. Still now beautiful. And moved to Stratford-upon-Avon. We could visit the Shakespeare's house.The day was raining, so we took a rest in the tea shop during freetime. After dinner we went to Tesco near the hotel, it was big supermaket. Enjoyed shopping! Next day we visited the Roman Bath, World Heritage and saw Stonehenge too! There were mysterious and miraculous stones. Before I watched some photo, people touched stones, but now we could not touch with ropes.

Last was London! we visited British Museum. There were many artistic goods from all over the world. Very exciting! And watched Bigben, Westminster Abbey. We had a plan to afternoon tea in the Orangery Kensington palace, but restrant had another reservation. It was very sorry to us, too bad! We changed another hotel's tea. Palace's museum shop was very interesting. We bought Prince George's memorial plates for sale! This afternoon we went to Liberty shop, Junko love making handcraft, a desire to go! We enjoyed shopping in Regent Street. We wanted to go Harrods but no time to went and we wanted to stay more one day in London! Almost night we went to hotel's Bar  drank local draft beer. Very very good England beer! Hotel's breakfast were very nice and we could eat Roastbeef, Fish and chips, cottage pie, afternoon tea. We enjoyed English foods. I think trip is enrich our life. England travel was good experience for me!

Posted for Yoko

Thursday, 4 August 2016

After-reading - A famous kidnapping story

The famous kidnapping case is Guriko Morinaga case. It was happened 18th March 1984. The boss of Ezakiguriko company was kidnapped in his house. He was with his children in the bathroom,but they kidnapped only him. They demanded 10billion yen and 10kg gold bars to his family. But 3 days after, he was released. He had no damages.

After that, they threaterned the Guriko company. They send confection with patassium cyanide, they demanded much money. They changed the target. They threaterned many food companies, Morinaga, House, Marudai, over one year. They made themselves Known Kaijin 21 mensou. A lot of things were left behind. But it was unsolved. No one arrested.

Another story, the photo was showed us. It was alike suspect. It was similar my high school history teacher.

Posted for Misuzu

Castle - TV series review

N.B. May contain spoilers!

Castle TV series features a beautiful detective Katherine Beckett and a mystery novel writer Richard Castle, who solve unusual crimes in the city of New York. This series was created by Andrew W. Marlowe, and originally released on March 9, 2009.

Female protagonist, Kate Beckett had a painful memory and trauma about the death of her mother. The case had been unsolved, and that was why she chose her current career. The first episode starts with a murder case which seems to resemble the murder case in Castle’s novel. Detective Beckett comes to contact Castle and asks him for help. Intrigued by the beautiful, mysterious Kate Beckett, Richard Castle starts working together with her two other male colleagues to solve strange challenging cases. Interestingly, Castle argues that he is going to investigate as many murder cases as possible in order to release his new novel series featuring an attractive female detective named Nicky Heat. As story goes on, Beckett is almost close to her mother’s murderer, but at the same time she has to face the devastating fact, losing her trustful boss and naerly losing her own life. The story is very thrilling as well as romantic. Richard cannot help fall in love with Beckett, supporting her in the back. Where are their relations going?

Richard Castle
Richard Castle (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
The great strength of this TV series and what makes the series different from other detective stories are the speed each episode moves and discloses the murderer, and the attractiveness of each character. Richard leads a life with his beloved daughter, Ashley, and his eccentric actress mother. Beckett’s colleagues, who are Ryan and Esposito, who support her and work with her doggedly. Each of them has their own private life and they are presented during the series. There are eight seasons. The only weakeness I notice is the unsolved case of Beckett’s mother, which remains unsolved until the end.

Posted for Shizue

Wednesday, 3 August 2016

After-reading Christmas in Prague

I write to you Josef, that your wife is dead. On Christmas night she ran to the border to enter to Austria. Just before crossing the border the guards shot her. She carried Pavel –your baby son, and my grandson on her back, and fortunately he is alive! You had better not to come back to Prague. It’s too dangerous for you. I made a firm resolution to bring up Pavel instead of my daughter. I am going to educate him to be a good man. Someday the country will change better, and you and Jan will be able to get a chance to see him. I wish your new life be peaceful and may the blessing be upon you.


Posted for Misako

Monday, 1 August 2016

The Lost World - letter to my friend

Dear My Friend,

Did you remember a terrible case happened on 5 years ago? I remembered the terrible/sad case as if it was yesterday.

Five years ago, my brother and I lived near Manaos. My brother, Pedro Lopez and I were half brother and were grown by same mother. Pedro Lopez’s father was a Mexican and my father was a Indian.

He was very gentle, but he was highly skilled in his leadership and ground control. He owned a lot of land and was rich. Many Indian worked for Pedro Lopez’s land very well and he paid money and gave food properly.
I thought that the Indians worked for his land were satisfied with their work.

But, suddenly a man called Lord Roxton came here and fought him and killed him. Lord Roxton killed my love brother though he didn’t know well my brother. I was very sad he was killed, but I was also sad and surprised that many Indians looked happy because he was killed though he gave many Indians fruitful life.

Sometime after my brother was killed, I heard that some Indians said that Pedro Lopez was very cruel and they worked very hard, but they got very little money or food and some of Indians died due to hard work.

My brother could bent his ear to the Indians opinions. I am absolutely disgusted with Lord Roxton who killed my kind brother.

Monday, 25 July 2016

Famous food and drink in south of France

 In the south of France,They eat a lot of potherb and herb with olive oil, for example ratatouille, salad Nicouise, and quiche of spinach too.

The most of famous seafood dish is Bouilla baisse, They also have salmon terrine and oysters.

They often eats dessert, lemon tart, chocolate mousse and cherry clafouti, of all others vanilla souffle is so delicious!

The traditional aperitif is pastis, It made of herb and spice extract, aniseed and so on.
They drinks a lot of champagne and wine as well.

Sunday, 24 July 2016

Taketorimonogatari - a Japanese Fairy Story

My fairy story

Tell the story of a fairy tale from your country

There is a famous fairy story, which called Taketorimonogatari.

We dont know who wrote it and when its written exactly. People assume that itwritten in 10th century.

Once there was a husband and a wife. They didnt have a child. One day, the husband went to bamboo forest, and found glowing bamboo. The husband cut the bamboo. Surprisingly, there was a cute girl sleeping in the bamboo.
The husband brought the girl to his house. The wife was pleased to see her, and they decided to raise her as their child. They named her Kaguya, and raised her with caution. Kaguya grew up rapidly like bamboo, and she became beautiful girl. As time goes by, many kings hear that there is a beautiful girl called Kaguya, and so many kings come over to Kaguyas house to propose her. However, Kaguya didnt want to marry any of kings. Five kings were persistent, and Kaguya asked one impossible favor to each man. The favor is to bring a Buddhas base, bring an immortals tree, bring a fire-mouse skin, bring the ball of dragon neck, and bring a shell of swallow.
Each man brought fake, but Kaguya detected the lie, and those men had to say good bye to her. About the same time, she told the husband and the wife that she came from moon. She was sad, but soldier from moon came for Kaguya, and she went back to moon.

Friday, 22 July 2016

Postcard from....Tokyo

Puppet-master Jim
Hi everyone, and sorry to all our Saturday students (I have not seen you for ages!)

This weekend I have been busy in Tokyo, training teachers in Ikebukuro to become speaking examiners for Young Learners & also First Certificate. As you know, these are exams we have been offering at Luna for many years now - we will be holding YLE again in October, FCE in December.

Only experienced and professional teachers are eligible to undertake the training, and even then are required to re-certify annually.

So we should congratulate our Damian, who completed all the training necessary to become an SE for Starters, Movers and Flyers (to add to FCE, CAE & CPE levels he acquired recently).  We are proud to encourage our staff to develop their professional skills, and grateful of the time & effort this has required. I am sure Damian will be transferring his examiner skills into his classes immediately.

Damian in training - YLE Starters
Of course, I found a nice pub. This time the Tap Room in Takadanobaba, part of the very good Baird Brew group. A healthy variety of craft beers but a daft ordering/billing system; I guess if you drink enough, the inconvenience is overcome. A very pleasant evening cutting with new teacher/examiner colleagues form Australia, the Philippines, UK, USA, and Canada....ironically nearly everyone actually living in Gifu. Must go there soon!

Thursday, 21 July 2016

Postcard from...Bulli, New South Wales (Australia).

Hi everyone,
Mrs. Turner's wonderful class

Maybe you noticed that Eleanor has not been around lately? Actually, she has spent a whole school term at a primary school near Sydney, with her cousin Joe. She has been 'home staying' with her four cousins, and her Aussie aunt & uncle (except they're both English!).

I took an extra day away from Luna (June 29) to arrive early, and surprise my little girl...we had a wonderful reunion at her bus stop, coming home from school. I got to meet her classmates - they had a lovely goodbye party for her on their last day of term. A very cheerful & chatty bunch of bright faces, shepherded by Mrs. Turner, who has been her teacher and overseen quite a transformation!

Last soccer practice with coach Mark
Before flying back, we had a big family reunion (my mum, my cousins and all their children - 19 of us in a local pizza restaurant) and time for a weekend of sport. Eleanor played her last football match for Woonoona and had to say good bye to her very best "bestie", and shared the goalkeeping gloves with cousin Joe. Lovely buzz around the mixed team, even though they were well-beaten. I went to support cousin Louis play rugby union in a floodlit U15 game, and Uncle Mike play in a 'seniors' league fixture (football) - very good standard & very fit. Memo to self....
Fish 'n' chips in Shellharbour

Long walks on the beach, fish & chips, family dinners - all squeezed into an extended weekend. Delighted to have my girl back; an amazing episode in all our lives. Homestay in 2017, anyone?

Wednesday, 20 July 2016

The Viking lifestyle - ice hotels

I am very interested in ICE HOTEL in Switzerland and Finland.
All things in this hotel are made by ICE.
Lodger can do all things as usual, but all tools are made by ICE.

  • Sit iced sofa to rest 
  • Sleep at iced bed 
  • Eat meals at iced table and chair 
  • Talk at iced bar and drink alcohol using iced glass 
  • Take a bath surrounded in ICE 

All furniture are made by ICE, but lodger doesn’t feel cold. But if lodger wants to get all warmed up, lodger can take a sauna bath made by ICE only for 15 min. When a lodger take a sauna bath, the ice width of sauna bath will reduce by 5mm.

I want to try how I can sleep at iced bed. Lodger doesn’t lie directly on Iced bed and some fur skin from serow protect the lodger from the coldness of iced bed. So, I want to experience how effect the fur skin from serow has.

And I have another reason that I am very interested in ICE HOTEL. Switzerland and Finland are one of counties where alive with aurora.

ICE HOTEL is made by ICE and it means there are many translucent sites. During lodger stays in ICE HOTEL, lodger can see aurora inside the hotel.

When aurora appears, lodger can go to outside to see aurora more clearly.

Postcard from...Hiroshima

Where are we now?!
Hi everyone.

I have been away for the weekend (June 25-6) in Hiroshima. I have never been here before, but have always wanted to visit. Attending the second JALT EBM of the year here was a very good excuse - but of course I was very busy most of the day times in meetings & talking to teachers from all over the country (and introducing our Damian to people - did you know he is the PR guy for Shinshu Chapter?)

On Saturday evening, we managed to find a pub that was going to show the third & final rugby test match between England & Australia. I really wanted to see England make it a 'whitewash'. I was not disappointed, and was smiling from ear to ear (Kilkennys helped) by bedtime.
Thousands of Cranes for Peace

On Sunday afternoon, meetings finished, we tore off to Miyajima and the amazing temple there. Wasn't sure what to expect, but would have been impressed regardless. Wonderful structure, incredibly peaceful, and a very calming sunset sitting on the sea wall. A ridiculously overpriced & snobby craft beer pub annoyed us, but a standing-up steak bar/restaurant was divine!

Monday morning was an all too brief look around the Peace Park - President Obama was here a few weeks ago - which was ground zero one innocent August morning in 1945. In a flash the world changed; impossible to imagine & overwhelming in scale. The A Dome is an iconic image/symbol which is being reinforced to stand testimony even if an earthquake hits the city. 

Where the world changed
I am very glad I finally managed to visit this clean, organised and happy city. I love the trams, and the vibrant city finally enjoying a successful baseball season too.

Sorry it took a while to post this postcard :)


Monday, 18 July 2016

Musically inspired postcards - Reiko

Dear my brother

All my family is fine and happy. Now we stay in Karuizawa. And we are camping. And my family and our friend's family have rice party there.

We are very happy. Rice ball is good. And other food and wine are good too.

Please come to rice party next time. We would like to join your family.

See you again.

From Reiko

Saturday, 16 July 2016

Musically inspired postcards - Yoko

Dear Damian

I have holiday one week from yesterday. This letter is from Hawaii island.

Today I went to beach with boyfriend. Weather was sunny and sea was blue and clear.

We enjoy our vacation. I will buy souviner for you.

See you

From Yoko

Friday, 15 July 2016

Musically inspired postcards - Misuzu

Dear Damian

I am holiday now. I am staying Hawaii. I am lying on the sea side and looking the festival. Everyone's dancing.  girl is running to a boy with flowers.

I am very happy when I watch them.

See you soon