My location is Kumamoto City in Kumamoto Prefecture which is on the island of Kyushu. Riaz and Loren who are two of the other teachers that are attending the same training session as me were placed in Gifu Prefecture and Aichi Prefecture which are both in the Chūbu Region. Helen another teacher was placed in Wakayama Prefecture which is in the Kansai Region. The last teacher Peter was placed in Ehime Prefecture on the island of Shikoku. So as you can see we have all been spread out across the country.
When I first heard about my location I was a little disappointed because I had hoped to at least be placed somewhere near my 2nd choice which was Osaka in the Kansai Region. Or at least somewhere that I was more familiar with. But after doing some research about the area and watching some videos it seems that Kumamoto City may not be such a bad place after all. Originally I thought about asking to be moved somewhere else based on the fact that the city is situated fairly close to two active volcanoes. But later I realised if they did move me somewhere else I could end up in a place that is better or a lot worse! So I decided to just stick with this placement.
Micaela riding around Kumamoto City with her bike
From looking up Kumamoto City on WikiTravel there seems to be quite a few interesting things to do. I will be able to see the Kumamoto Castle, Suizen-ji Gardens and visit Mt. Aso which is about 1hr40mins from Kumamoto City by local train. There is also an amusement park in Arao City called Mitsui Greenland which is not too far from Kumamoto City.
One of the many festivals in Kumamoto City
There also seems to be quite a few places to shop as well as nice places to eat in the city. One of the traditional foods in Kumamoto City is Basashi which is actually raw horse meat!!! I am fairly adventurous when it comes to food but the idea of eating raw horse meat does not appeal to me at all! But depending on how long I am in Kumamoto City I may end up trying it!
Lucky for me Kumamoto City is about 2hrs away from Fukuoka by train or bus both costing around 2,000yen one way. So if I can't find something interesting to do in Kumamoto City i'm sure I will find something to do in Fukuoka. Also during my investigation I found a couple clubs in Kumamoto City that play Reggae. So some Reggae is better than no Reggae at all so I can at least get my fix. If not I can always go to Fukuoka because they have a lot more going on there. I am a bit disappointed there doesn't seem to be any type of sports team in Kumamoto because I would have liked to have gone to a Baseball game. But again I can always visit Fukuoka for that type of entertainment.
I have just a few weeks left before I am supposed to fly out. Luckily I received my suitcases and all the other stuff I ordered. All that is left is really to buy my travel insurance and also some new clothes/shoes for my new job. Luckily for me I can wear casual clothes in the classroom so I do not need to bring many shirts and ties. It looks like my suitcase is going to be fairly light...I hope!