1. SEASONAL TREATS
My coworker made sakura-mochi which is a famous seasonal treat this time of year. It's mochi with red bean inside covered in a pickled sakura leaf. The leaf is supposed to add a strong and salty flavor to balance out the sweetness of the red bean. Usually it's a bit too strong for me, but this homemade version was THE best i've ever had!
2. MARATHON TAIKAI (SCHOOL 5K)
Every year in February, our school (and most schools in Japan) host a 5k. This is a crazy event to me because every single girl student is required to run a 5k in 30 minutes and every boy student is required to run 10k in an hour. And...every single student does it!
In proper Japanese 5k fashion, students are served a hot bowl of pork soup and a banana. I sprinkled some peppers in mine and it was BOMB. *side note: I also RAN in the 5k (yes you read that right) because they needed a few teachers to watch the students on the route and help any girl students who lagged behind. It was good practice to remind myself that it wasn't about the pain in my legs or the fact that my body hasn't moved that actively in a loooong time (haha so sad) but it was more about encouraging the students and helping them cross that finish line in time.
3. COWORKERS LUNCH OUT!
And then, just for kicks, my coworkers and I decided to eat some curry for lunch at this popular place in Kashiwa called Bombay after the 5k. Ikeda sensei has been raving about this "extremely hot" curry for some time now and we took this day to all check it out together.
SUUUUPER SPICY chicken curry right here. YOWZAH. It's the kind of spice that starts off sweet and you're like 'hey, I can do this' and then 5 seconds later you regret every morsel you let in your mouth hahaha. A few guys around the restaurant were straight up dripping sweat. We ordered one order for all 8 of us to try, and still couldn't finish it!
I opted for the really yummy veggie curry which looks like a big mound because it's sitting atop a tomato. And they serve you really strong coffee after, I'm assuming to kick the curry taste out of your mouth.
Tamaoki and Tanaka sensei...awesome coworkers and two guys I really look up to! I am truly thankful for the people I get to work with at Ichikashi. They are all so kind and warm hearted and I am so thankful to spend time with them!
4. A FEW GOOD SPOTS
Two other great meals recently...more korean BBQ and the best burger spot in Kashiwa, VIBES! I ordered the seasonal special, strawberry cheddar burger! FOREAL! And it was bomb. Praise God for good food.
5. ELEMENTARY AND JUNIOR HIGH SCHOOLS
And lastly, a few snaps from my time visiting Elementary and Junior High Schools in February. I get to visit about 5 schools every year and teach some lessons...but the best part is always eating lunch with the kids. A true Japanese experience.
Pork veggies soup, rice, veggie salad, fried fish, sweet beans, an orange and milk. The soup was amazing.
This school had a crazy lunch this day...bread rolled in chocolate and kinako (soybean powder), noodle soup, pineapple salad, dried fish, an orange slice and milk. Whatttt!!!!
Life has been good lately! Thank you Lord!