Hero photograph
Photo by T C


Aeryn Andis, Maggie Gibson —

A group of fellow students from Tauhara College and our caregivers, accompanied by Ms Sawada embarked on a journey to Japan during the Term One holidays. We visited Tokyo, Osaka, Kyoto, Hiroshima and Miyajima to learn Japanese culture at first hand and improve our language skills. When we arrived in Japan, we noticed many aspects that were very different from New Zealand. Japan is very clean, and people travel by train everywhere. It was strange that there were no insects, such as flies, bees, wasps in the cities. All the people in Japan were very kind and always welcoming in stores, restaurants and hotels, we enjoyed talking to the locals. Vending machines were everywhere, almost one on every street that sells both hot and cold drinks. Highlights of our trip included visiting Tauhara College’s sister school, Kindai High School in Osaka and going to Hiroshima Peace Park. Kindai High School was very big and clean. The students and teachers were all very welcoming, around 80 of them giving up their afternoon on Friday to greet us. On Saturday we attended some classes. Calligraphy class was a new and exciting experience; the students from Kindai were very helpful and had an enthusiastic attitude towards hosting us. While in Hiroshima Peace Park, we met an in-utero survivor from the Hiroshima bombing, named Kosei Mito. He gave us insight on the Hiroshima bombing from a survivor’s perspective, making us think about the importance of world peace and stopping war. Overall, the trip was an opportunity of a lifetime for everyone and an experience we will never forget. We would like to thank, the school community and local businesses, The Warehouse, M21 Meats, Farmers Discount Meats, Tauhara College PTA and Sasakawa Fellowship for their generous support for the Japan trip. Aeryn Andis, Maggie Gibson