On the third day there was the Opening Ceremony. This is when the school officially opens. While yesterday’s Welcoming Ceremony was only for the incoming new students and their families, this event is for all of the students at the school (both the junior high and high school. This was again a formal event where our students had to wear nice clothes.
It was a little cloudy and a bit windy during the ceremony, but everything went smoothly. We presented them with a plaque to commemorate our visit.
As we left the ceremony we found our good friends who had just visited Modesto in February and March taking a class picture.
Then everyone changed into street clothes and we were off to Nishiki Market on the Bus.
This is the oldest market in Kyoto. Many of the goods that are brought into Kyoto each day pass through this market. There is a rush in the morning when the shops open, then again at the end of the day when the merchants are marking goods down to clear them out.
The students wandered through the adjoining mall area and had lunch while shopping for souvenirs. We were then off on a walk to go see Gion and the Kiyomizu‐dera Temple grounds.
This was an amazing area filled with small temples and shrines, stone streets, small shops, and great views of Kyoto. I think we could have spent an entire day here and not seen all that there was to see.
It was then time to go and find a bus and get back to the school. Once the students were all off with their families the we had another formal event to attend, the teacher’s party. This is where new teachers are introduced and those who are retiring say their farewells. It’s another formal event with lots of food.
And then to top off the evening, it was off to Karaoke with a large group of teachers. This was fun. You can really have some fun when you’re not up in front of a bunch of strangers. In Japan, the big thing is private Karaoke boxes (rooms).