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Tea Ceremony for Foreigners

I spent most of the day marking essays at school. I did, however, take a nice lunch break and visit Summit, my favorite grocery store at the moment.

They were having a special apple day, and were selling all sorts of apple-related fresh foods. There were even menchi katsu and korokke that contained apple. I couldn’t help but sample a few of their special apple buns, and they were just 100 yen each! I sat down in the eating area and enjoyed my lunch along with their complementary hot green tea.

The two pink buns were filled with apple custard. The Danish was the best!

After that, I returned to school and spent the rest of the afternoon grading papers. Once work was over, I stopped by home briefly, before heading out to my volunteer appointment.

I spent the evening interpreting at a tea ceremony that aimed at introducing foreigners to the traditional Japanese custom of sado. There were many people from all over the world, including France, Chili, China, Korea, and Tibet. It was a fantastic experience and I learned a lot of interesting little facts that I had never heard before. I have been to tea ceremonies both in Vancouver and Japan, but this was the first time that I had heard such a detailed explanation.

The sweets were absolutely delicious, as well. The large one is made entirely of bean paste, and is meant to be paired with koicha (strong matcha), while the small powder sweets go with usucha (weaker matcha).

The guests and other interpreters were so friendly that I ended up staying there long after it was over. I stood outside for almost an hour just chatting with a few other attendees. I didn’t get home until about 10PM. It was a long but enjoyable day! Volunteering in Japan has been introducing me to many wonderful people and experiences.

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