Sunday, September 22, 2013

Okinawa JET Orientation: A Mission

About a week after arriving in Okinawa, all new JETs were expected to attend a welcome orientation. We received the emails a week before except the email did not explain how to arrive at the orientation, which was located in Okinawa City. What made it worse was that the orientation was scheduled on August 15th - my birthday!

See this date? This shit is sacred!

Okinawa has absolutely no rail system outside of Naha. Therefore, residents must either drive or take the bus. The email contained the address to the orientation, but links were all broken. Seeing that I had no way of knowing which bus to take or to which bus stop, I put my mother's quote to the test, "Preguntando se llega a Roma; Asking will get you to Rome," and I asked someone I thought would know. Unfortunately, no one could seem to be able help me because no on had taken the bus before or they were driving to the orientation. Thanks! So with the lack of information, I did the next best thing I could think of, which was to utilize technology. It's 2013, and if Siri can tell me where I can hide a body then I can definitely figure out how to get to this orientation. 

At least I met a new friend while staying with a friend

I used Google maps's street view until I found the nearest bus stop and zoomed into the sign. From there, I figured out the bus route. I had a veteran Oki JET confirm, and I stayed at his place, which was a lot closer than my apartment. That morning, he dropped me off at the bus stop on his way to work, and I changed buses three separate time to arrive at the orientation. I arrived perfectly on time, but I also arrived drenched in sweat. Absolutely drenched! As I rushed into the bathroom to clean up and the janitor, who was cleaning the bathroom at the time, told me how beautiful I was. As much I wanted to beam over her compliment, I was a total disgrace as my dress, hair, and makeup were a complete mess.

On a lighter note, the orientation as very beneficial, and I enjoyed the time spent with my new JETs. I didn't enjoy some of the passive aggressiveness that I experience from a particular person when a friend announced that it was my birthday. However, during lunch two OkiJETs from Singapore bought me a green tea cake and sung me happy birthday in English and Chinese. There was a get-together after the orientation, but I skipped this to bum a ride from a northern JET. I should have mingled a bit more but I was so exhausted, and I wanted to wash the day and sweat off of me. Later in the night, I Skyped with my parents and boyfriend as they sung me "Happy Birthday."

 According to a quote from Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's Sherlock Holmes: The Sign of Four, 27 is "a sweet age, when youth has lost its self-consciousness and become a little sobered by experience." On to a sexy 27! 
So delish!
Happy Birthday to me from my parents and boytoy!

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