Hey everyone! I Hope you are all doing well and are looking forward to the end of the semester at UNM! So, in the past few weeks from my last blog I have gone to a new sushi place as well as to two different arcades. Also, golden week has started here, and it is a ten-day holiday. The fact that golden week is ten days this year, is a first.

So, to start I will tell you guys about the new sushi place that I and one of the other UNM students here went to. This restaurant felt like a mom and pop, classical Japanese style sushi place in that you had to stand to eat. In addition, the walls were covered with all the different sushi styles you could order, and they were handwritten in hiragana and kanji. What made this experience different than that of a place like Genki Sushi, was that there was only a small English menu. With that being said, I was able to use all my Japanese skills I have learned thus far, and that felt really great! In addition, with my developed/developing Japanese language skills I was able to have a conversation with one of the shop owners. Not only was this sushi restaurant amazing in terms of terrific tasting food at a very reasonable price, and the staff being very welcoming, but the cultural experience was my favorite part.

I know in one of my previous blogs I have mentioned briefly the arcades here in Tokyo and how they are easily one of my favorite places to go because I really like video games. The games they have in the arcades range from claw machines to VR video games. Regarding claw machines though, I have been super lucky and won a few Pokémon plushies from them, on my first try! I won one in Shibuya at the Taito arcade and one at a smaller arcade in Shinjuku. The funny, and kind of ironic part, is I wasn’t really trying. I just thought “eh, why not try it and see what happens” and next thing I knew I won! Winning something in a Tokyo arcade is definitely a different kind of winning experience. Aside from amazing sushi and fun times at arcades, I have also planned a three-day trip to the Niigata prefecture during golden week.   

So, quick history notes. Golden week actually started as a celebration of Emperor Showa’s birthday, but over the years, more national holidays were made on the days following Emperor Showa’s birthday, and it turned into a long holiday. It is also a time in which people think about how to make Japan thrive in later years. So now that the super brief history of golden week is done, I am really excited to go to Niigata! I am going to check out the beach, the Sea of Japan and an Island off Niigata called Sado Island. Sado Island is IN the Sea of Japan! I will definitely be uploading photos of this adventure to my Instagram @isaacxmaes!

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. And good luck on finals!