life · Parenting

Japan: The count down is on…

A few months ago the biggest kiddo (Jamie-Grace) applied for a scholarship for a 4 week intensive language program in Japan, this was her second year applying and to our amazement she was successful this year!!! It’s been an interesting for months as we have been planning for the trip, between the emotions running wild (ok mummy got the first travel info pack and had a cry, in my defence my baby girl is leaving the country ALONE! and for 4 weeks! I think it was only fair that I have my moment), followed by the moments of “I don’t wanna go”, “I’ll miss Christmas”, “I’ll miss ——” (thats the boyfriend) – FYI I don’t think she’s even mentioned missing me! but hey whatever! But thankfully that passed then we moved on to the freaking out about packing, and we have to go shopping (still…..) and worrying about what her host family will be like and school uniforms and how much money does she take and how does she access her $$$, and phone and well I’m sure your getting the idea.

Last week we received names of other kids she will be traveling with – thats been great she has touched base with them and they will at the very least know each other a little bit come time to travel (not to mention the prospect of new friends!) and she received her flight tickets and host family details. So we have gone from lots of wondering what next to sudden realisation that WHOLEY HECK its almost time to leave!

Her host family is a young couple with a 2 year old daughter, she’s excited about the cute bubba and her chubby cheeks… you’d think after 4 brothers she would be over babies but apparently not Japanese ones! – After all they don’t, umm…. yeah no I’m sure they cry and poop too. Anyway crazy child.

She leaves on the 26th November – yep in 26 days she off to the big smoke (Sydney) for a day then come 10pm she’s off on her big adventure – In the mean time she’s got shopping and packing to do and of course finish year 10 a week early (thats been a fun little challenge… seriously why would you leave all the assessments and exams till the last week of the school year, it’s crazy.

So a little about the scholarship – it’s through AFS Intercultural Programs Australia and it was a scholarship offered to the children of employees of Anglo American (specific mines that I’m not gonna list sorry). They have heaps of different programs for all over the world and long stay and short stay ones, ones you pay for and scholarships. The team at AFS have been awesome, fire off and email and they get back to us by the next day, its been great, and they seem to be cool with the multiple “mum wants to know” emails (if any of you ever read this – you all rock). They have sent us ample information, about the host country, what to expect, packing suggestions, a what not to do in Japan list, and lots of other reading material (can you see why I had a cry?).

We would love to hear if anyone has travelled to Japan recently, specifically Nagoya, any tips or suggestions you have will be greatly appreciated.

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