Island Life, Lifestyle Change

Chasing Rainbows and Cherry Blossoms

Yesterday I ran the Sakura Half Marathon on Amami Island, a race than Amami holds every February in the north. The marathon bears its name because the course stretches around a dam that is lined with Amami's early-blooming sakura trees. Since Amami is so far south, we get to enjoy hanami (flower viewing) almost two… Continue reading Chasing Rainbows and Cherry Blossoms


One of My Best Week at School Yet.

This week, I want to burn all of my words for warmth because believe it or not, my tropical island is cold. Especially in my school, and specifically in my teachers' room. It has rained every single day since last Saturday. I'm not just talking drizzles here, has been pouring buckets of cold rain. Anyway.… Continue reading One of My Best Week at School Yet.

JET Life, Teaching

It Will Always Be the Little Things

There is something special about the time one spends living abroad. Wherever you are in the world, you are bound to have experiences that are truly unique to you and your situation. I had one of those experiences last night. D and I decided to brave the downpour and go out to sing karaoke with… Continue reading It Will Always Be the Little Things


Merry Christmas!

This has been my favorite Christmas season yet. I learned this month just how much the country of Japan is infused with the spirit of Christmas. My senseis and students were just so excited for Santa-themed lessons all month long! And after a not-so-festive October 31st on Amami, I worried there wouldn't be much holiday… Continue reading Merry Christmas!

Island Life

The Island Experience

*This post was originally published on Kagoshima AJET`s blog on November 17th. Like most prefectural ALTs, I didn’t find out exactly where I would be placed in Kagoshima until about a month before my departure. I dreamed about all the different places I could end up—the Osumi or Satsuma peninsula, Kagoshima City, or one of… Continue reading The Island Experience

Island Life, JET Life

Island Sunshine and Island Rain

Hello, everyone! I had plans to write on Sunday, but I had a discouraging night so I didn't feel like writing (more on that later.) But I wanted to post something before I leave for Kagoshima for a week of orientation, Japanese language and cultural lessons, and shenanigans. But no fireworks display because that pesky… Continue reading Island Sunshine and Island Rain

JET Life

So This One Time in Japan…

Hello family, friends, neighbors, and maybe strangers! I promised myself that I would blog about my experiences living and working in Japan, so here is my first post from my island-inaka* placement, Amami! It’s been 10 days since I left the comfort of my home on the east coast. I can’t tell if it seems… Continue reading So This One Time in Japan…