Today started with everyone meeting at Ichihara for the farewell party. We had a few speeches, chatted, played games, did some performances showing our many talents, and took lots and lots of photos. It was a great finish to our amazing home stay experience. After the farewell party our host students came on the bus to the train station with us where we said our goodbyes. There was lots of hugging and some tears. No one wanted to leave! It was extremely hard to leave the people that had become our families for almost a week.
After the emotional morning I think everyone was very keen to get to Tokyo, the capital of Japan. Time for shopping! After the one hour train ride to Tokyo Station we stopped and had an Obento for lunch, then caught another train to our hotel. When we arrived at the Shiba Park Hotel I think we were all very relieved that it looked lovely! It is very nice and fancy so we are all happy to be staying here for the rest of the trip. The first thing most of us did when we arrived was check for WiFi. And yes! We found a special area on the reception floor that has WiFi. As a result of the detection of WiFi, all of the girls spent a good 50 minutes sitting down on the reception floor updating Facebook and checking Instagram.
At 4.00pm we all headed down to the lobby to go sightseeing. We visited Asakusa and did lots and lots of shopping in all the alleys. After looking through all the beautiful souvenirs and shops, we had dinner at a Yakiniku restaurant which was delicious. Yakiniku is basically when you cook the food you order yourself on the table in front of you on a mini grill. It was quite fun and funny especially when our food caught on fire and had to be put out with ice. After dinner we had another late night of Karaoke.
I would just like to personally thank all the home stay families for having us. They made our journey an amazing experience and it is something that I will never ever forget. Everyone has a special place in my heart now and they will be missed dearly. I met so many lovely people at Ichihara Chuo High School and enjoyed every minute of being with my host family.