Seinan Gakuin University, Japan
Aloha my name is Mana Ho, I am currently a communications major studying abroad at Seinan Gakuin University in Fukuoka Japan. This past semester has been a rollercoaster of so many emotions and adventures. I have done so much in the past four months and met so many people who have changed my life for the better. Looking back at the photos from the past few months, it truly was such an amazing experience with memories I will cherish forever.
The first event or experience I want to talk about is meeting a lady named Takako. Me and a few friends of mine were at a second hand kimono shop since we had heard from other exchange students to check it out. The Kimono at the shop were really cheap and talking to the store owner they were either really old or not in the best condition but still beautiful, I hadn't gone with the intention of buying but my friends were interested in getting one. I ended up being a translator and started speaking to a lady (Takako) who i believe was a friend of the shop owner, she started telling us the proper way to wear the kimono and how they were made. After introducing ourselves and talking for a bit, she told us that she has a bunch of kimonos that she no longer wears anymore. She lived in a different city but had just come back that day to her house next to the shop and our school. When we saw her collection we were so surprised, you could tell that it was very beautifully made and she told us the story of each one and when she had worn it. You could hear the passion in her voice as she showed us a few she even made herself. She told us she wanted to give us one since she wouldn't wear them anymore, we were taken away at how kind she was and she told us that not only would she be happy but the kimonos would be too. You don't see Kimonos as often nowadays but hearing her talk about them made me appreciate them so much more.
The second experience I want to talk about is visiting Nokonoshima Island. We went with a group of 10 of us from our dorm in the early morning. The weather was beautiful and we went to the ferry port to the take the boat to the island. From the boat ride, and the food, to the flowers everything was so nice. The first thing we did was ate hamburgers before going to the flower garden. The garden was absolutely breathtaking with the most flowers I had ever seen. You could see the ocean while being in the flowers and it was very relaxing. It was a time away from school and with my friends there it was a good getaway for the day.