Hey everyone! It feels like I haven’t posted on here since last year! So, the past few weeks have been so busy but so much fun! I was able to ring in the new year in Shibuya, I went to the Meguro River Minna no Illumination and I just finished my first semester at Meiji Gakuin University.

              So New Year’s Eve in Shibuya was not only one of the coolest things I have ever experienced, it was also a huge culture shock. To start, when I and the other exchange students got there, the amount of people in one location was crazy! It was like being in an ocean of people. And being that it was somewhat of an ocean, after a certain time, the main crosswalk of Shibuya was blocked via fences by the Japanese police. However, being that there were so many people one of the gates came down and I and a few other students got swept away in what felt like an ocean current of people and ended in the Shibuya crossing to ring in the new year. After ringing in the new year, we hung out in Shibuya for a while then got some dinner.

              A few days later, I then attended the Meguro River Minna no Illumination in Gotanda. These illuminations were so cool in that all the Cherry Blossom trees were decorated in pink lights. It was like viewing something out of a Movie! I took plenty of pictures as well as some videos of this illumination event and they will soon be on Instagram. The thing I enjoyed about this illumination festival is the fact that since the trees are right next to the Meguro River, seeing the reflection of the lights in water made it feel a bit surreal.

              And finally, I just finished my finals for the fall semester here at Meiji Gakuin University. I only had a final for my Japanese Language class, but that final was so intense that it more than made up for not having finals in my other classes. So, what made this so intense? Well to start, it was split into two days. The first day was a kanji final in which we had to write the correct hiragana to a kanji and the correct Kanji to hiragana. Plus, the thing with Kanji is if you miss one small stroke or dash the whole Kanji is wrong. The same can be said with hiragana. However, I managed to get through that because I studied a lot. The next day was a test on all the grammar and conjugation we have learned from the second half of the semester. I managed to get through it, but, it was intense.  After this second final there was a farewell party for the students studying abroad only for one semester. I noticed all the studying paying off at this party in that I was able to have a conversation in Japanese with one of my Japanese friends. When I came to Japan I couldn’t speak any Japanese at all!

So now that this first semester is done I am going to catch up on some much-needed sleep and then I am going to explore Japan. One of the first places I am going is the Imperial Palace because I love Japanese History.

Thank you for taking time out of your day to read this blog and have a wonderful rest of your day. And remember to follow @unmstudyabroad on Instagram and Facebook