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Keizai Koho Center Teacher Fellowship 2004

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Travel Log
- Sunday, July 11, 2004 (Day11) -
  Home-stay in Tokyo (continued)  

(Comments by Anthony Cicco, 2004 Fellow, on July 11, 2004)


On Sunday, I met Tamiko's and Takeo's son, Shohei, and his wife, Miyuki and their children Minami (5) and Keita (2). Shohei teaches English at a school. This offered further opportunity to look at education in Japan. We were also able to reminisce over Shohei's time in England some years ago. All in all, the weekend provided some insight into the Japanese family.

Home-stay in Tokyo (continued)
(Comments by Terry Hunt, 2004 Fellow, on July 15, 2004)

After a traditional Japanese breakfast, miso soup, salad, rice, salmon, and pickled plums, we walked to the local elementary school so the Fujimoto's could place their votes for House of Representatives. I wasn't allowed inside the gym where the voting took place. The elementary school was the one that So and Yukari attended years before. Under each window were planters with plants growing. The first graders grew Morning Glories just like when Mrs. Fujimoto's children were students. When peering in the window at the front corridor one could see a line of unicycles and a tapestry of family crest hanging above them.

I really enjoyed the walk back to the apartment in which the Fujimotos had lived for over twenty years. Mrs. Fujimoto told me bits and pieces of her life in this part of Tokyo. I could get a feeling of their life and their community over the years.

The next part of the visit was sight seeing. We went to the Imperial Palace, a 100 Yen store, and the Hard Rock Café for lunch. It was the visit at the end of the day to their friend's (Murasue, a Zen Buddhist monk) home and his temple, Yosenji Temple, which completely awed me. The temple had been in Murasue's family for over 400 years. Although the temple had been rebuilt recently, it was traditional Japanese architecture and had some original building materials. Murasue's home was attached to the temple but it was a starling contrast both in the architecture and building materials. His home was built out of concrete and steel. He said the difference represented the past meeting the future. The Fujimoto's took me back to the hotel after our visit to their friend's temple and home. I was very grateful the Fujimotos opened their home and life to me. A memorable experience.


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  The Keizai Koho Center (Japan Institute for Social and Economic Affairs) is a private, non-profit organization that works in cooperation with Nippon Keidanren (Japan Federation of Economic Organizations) to foster better understanding of the goals and the role of business in a free society.    

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