(Goodbye Tokyo, Hello Seoul)
Hello from Seoul, South Korea! It is Saturday, September 6th around 3:00 p.m. or so and we just arrived into our hotel in Seoul. The CIS tour group actually has a free weekend (today and tomorrow) to explore the city and check out the sites. But before I go any further, I will give you a quick recap of the past few days!
I left Los Angeles on Wednesday, September 3rd with the CIS tour group and arrived (safely) in Tokyo on Thursday, September 4th around 6:00 p.m. or so. We crossed over the international dateline and from now until September 19th or 20th, it is safe to say that I will pretty much be at least 12 hours ahead of the current North Carolina time zone.
Tokyo was a fascinating city, although we did not get too much time to explore – we were busy meeting students who attend schools at various schools in the city. After arriving on Thursday, September 4th around 6:00 p.m., we were up and ready to go by 9:00 a.m. on Friday morning when we visited the American School in Japan. At ASIJ, we had the opportunity to chat with a number of juniors and seniors in the school, and overall, it was a great college fair for us CIS schools. In the afternoon, we transferred to St. Mary’s International School where we had a college fair with St. Mary’s, Seisen, and Sacred Heart. Again, another great fair with a number of students interested in Elon University! I even had the chance to meet the father of not one, but two currently enrolled students at Elon.
In the evening, myself along with a few others had the chance to walk around the city of Tokyo a bit (even though we were pretty tired). And I will be honest – I am so glad that I did not just go to bed and took the time to “explore” a bit. The group of us who went out had a great time walk around Tokyo and we had the chance to walk around a department stores and grab a bite to eat at a tiny restaurant. In Tokyo, there are a number of side streets that have these little “hole-in-the-wall” eating locations that literally only seat about 6 people. But even though they are tiny in size, these restaurants serve some of the BEST food. All in all – it was a great night with lots to see and do!
Today was an easy day – we just had to get up and fly to Seoul, South Korea. The flight was about 2 hours (much smaller than the 11 hour flight from LA to Tokyo) and this evening, we are going to the markets to do a little bit of shopping! Tomorrow, most of our group will be visiting what is known as the DMZ – the area that separates North Korea and South Korea. There are tours that are lead through this area where you can learn a little bit about the history of North and South Korea as well as see underground tunnels that soldiers used to go back and forth between the north and the south.
Monday will be an exciting day as we visit two schools – Seoul International School and Seoul Foreign School for more college fairs and even some workshops. I will be giving a workshop on How To Use a College Fair at SFS and at some point, will probably post those tips upto this website!
There is so much more that I am seeing and doing while here – but I realize that much of what I am doing/learning/experiencing is hard to just capture in a brief blog entry! I also will be out of the “Blackberry Blackout” zone by Monday evening (September 8th) and thus I will be able to post much more frequently! (Our cell phones do not work in either Japan or South Korea). I hope everyone is well back at Elon and I will post more in a couple of days. 🙂