The week went by too quickly!
We managed to get to know one another, the great homestay families, students and chaperones from Okayama City, the SJOSC Board, San Jose City Council as individuals and as a ‘team’. The students attended events at the Silicon Valley Capital Club courtesy Catherine M Tompkison, a San Jose Giants game with great hospitality from the team and General Manager, Mark Wilson. We went to Monterey Bay Aquarium, The TECH Interactive (thank you to Bank of America), had an interactive docent tour of the San Jose Museum of Art, ate lunch at San Pedro Square, Poor House Bistro, Banana Crepe and Jtown Pizza. They had a tour (in Japanese) of the Japanese American Museum of San Jose, experienced “Legally Blonde” (Children’s Musical Theater of San Jose) and their host families took them to many places and did many things individually too!
We had tour of Diridon Station given by Rod Diridon himself, were led along the Guadalupe River on our way to SAP center from San Jose Walks and Talks, visited the SHARKS store, had a tour of San Jose City Hall and visited our councilmembers who made us all welcome!
All this began at the Welcome event in the Okayama Room at Kelley Park. The had a tour of the Japanese Friendship Garden which was modeled after the great landscape garden, Korakuen in Okayama and partially paid for with a gift from the City of Okayama was back in the beginnings of the Sister City relationship (1957). The students performed for us and then met their homestay families over a buffet lasagna buffet dinner topped off with seasonal fresh fruit and a cake from Peter’s Bakery in San Jose.
Summer 2020 will be a chance for eight students from San Jose to go to Okayama on the Homestay exchange program. Applications and details will be available by communicating with <firstname.lastname@example.org>