August 2013

Greetings all!


Welcome to the August issue of the Hyogo Times.


Of course August means that we must say goodbye to those retiring from the Hyogo JET community. It is a bittersweet time, but isn’t any period of change? Two of my closest friends are returning home this summer, so as a last hurrah we are currently travelling in Indonesia, a final celebration of what has been an amazing twelve months. I am sure there will be many (possibly inebriated) tears shed before the trip is out.


And so I find myself finishing this, my first editor’s letter, on a beach in Bali. The sand is sparkling, the waves rolling in, surfers stand proud on their boards, beautiful people bask in the sun, the air smells faintly of sunscreen and incense and somewhere a beach bar is throbbing with an infectious house beat…jealous yet? You should be. Indonesia is beautiful in its chaos, perfect for an adventure, and the complete opposite of Japan’s orderly society. It’s the first time I have left Japan this year and my serious wanderlust has finally been appeased (12 months is the longest stretch I have ever stayed in one country). It feels rather strange and incredibly noisy away from Nihon, but it does make me grateful for the luxuries of Japanese living: the quiet, the clean and the efficiency.


However, this month’s edition is dedicated to our new Hyogo ALTs. Having been here for a year myself I can assure you that you have just started the most exciting adventure of your lives thus far. This prefecture and country have more than you can imagine on offer to keep you busy in the weeks/months/years ahead.


Admittedly August is a tricky time in Japan; the heat is oppressive and the workload often mind-numbingly light, but the wonderful silver lining is that it’s also the season of festivals, fireworks and frivolity, so get out there and explore! The ultimate August trip is of course Mount Fuji. An impressive way to start your career in Japan; scaling the tallest mountain in the country will earn you massive kudos points with colleagues, and teach you why Japan’s called The Land of the Rising Sun.


And for those hours you’re twiddling your thumbs at your desk, what do we have for you at the Hyogo Times? Well, it’s a special feature packed issue; Kylie’s educating us in the illustrious history of Coolbiz; Adam is welcoming the new inaka residents with some sage advice; Paige has hot tips on what Apps to download for all you new Japanese smart-phone users and the Hyogo AJET committee are saying their ‘konnichiwas’, plus much more!


As ever, submissions, comments and greetings welcome by the 15th of the month, send to hyogotimespublications@gmail.com


Now, my cocktail-in-a-coconut is calling, so I best be off. I look forward to meeting you all at the Welcome Party.


Selamat tinggal!




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