|We said goodbye to Kato-san (centre), |
who did a great job of organizing the
Sendai/Tome parts of the trip
The Embassy is prettier than I thought because they showed us the garden on the main floor (I had walked by it in my previous visits, not through it). They needed someone to talk for ten minutes ... and so their investment in my trip finally paid off since I am a professional talker. I spoke about my research on Japan's defense politics. They didn't fall asleep and I got good questions (the students from all three schools--Toronto, Carleton, Ottawa) are all super sharp. So, it was a strange moment, but it worked out.
|The embassy overlooks a secondary imperial palace/gardens|
We then went back to our original hotel for reports. Each group had to report:
- What had they expected before they got here?
- What did they learn?
- What is their plan for sharing what they have learned when they get back home.
|The East Asia Studies folks from UoT|
|Toronto's Munk school|
|U of Ottawa's presentation|
|The CU folks really got the Japanese|
|Each group has a dissemination plan|
|The Ministry of Foreign Affairs rep|
is a NPSIA grad!
I realized in Tome that the Kakehashi folks do a great job of selecting host families as each student reported their interactions with the very kind, generous, sweet, and engaging families. Well, the Kakehashi folks in Canada did their jobs so very well, too, as the students on this trip are simply terrific. I have not gotten to interact with as many of the Toronto students because they have been on a separate bus and have often been elsewhere, but I really enjoyed chatting with them. I have spent far more time with the CU and UoO students, and the chats have been all over the place, including, last night, marriage as a guy asked me when/how did I know Girlfriend Spew would be Mrs. Spew.
These are smart people with lots of curiosity and big hearts. People keep trashing the next generation (every generation does it), but I have to say the future is mighty bright.
|The winners for the best social media stuff (non-prof edition)|
Dinner was at a buffet in a mall restaurant overlooking the bay. I got my shopping done quickly (kit-kats of various flavors and something for the aforementioned Mrs.). The students went off to Shinjuku and Shibuya since this was one of their last chances to do that and to experience the bar/club/etc scene. From this morning's instagrams, they clearly made it and didn't have to deal with huge crowds. I am pretty sure the Japanese are avoiding crowds in this time of
Today, we have a variety of tours and tourism including gardens and then one last night here.