Before heading out to Japan, the Nashville Consulate held a Pre-Departure Orientation where alumni of the program went over information such as budgeting, expectations, and a English teaching workshop. Afterwards, we went down to the lobby for a goodbye reception. There was a lot of good food, including sushi! I mingled around and met a JET alumnus who was part of the first year of the program in 1987. This year is the 30th anniversary of the program! When I was talking to him, I could tell how much the program had impacted his life. He had so many wonderful memories of his coworkers and the people in his community. It made me very excited to start my own JET adventure.
Nashville Consulate JETs (photo courtesy of Tye Ebel, Nashville Consulate JET Coordinator)
The next day, our group headed off on our day of traveling. First, we caught a flight from Nashville to Dallas. Very smooth flight except for a funny ordeal. Before leaving I bought a new water bottle. The type with a straw inside and then there is a rubber top that you can open with a switch. When I tried to get a drink during the flight, a long stream of water shot out of the top! It even flew into the seats behind me. At first, I was so confused because I was still half asleep from a short nap. Once I realized I was getting soaked, I started laughing hysterically. Our final flight was then from Dallas to Tokyo (Narita Airport). The very LONG one. Thankfully, most of the flight was smooth except for some bumps. Colorado and Alaska were especially bumpy with that crazy summer turbulence. After 13 hours, I could finally see Japan in the distance. Once we landed in Tokyo I realized that this was really happening. After months of waiting, I was finally back in Japan.