Osaki Kamijima is an island in the Seto sea island. It is a beautiful island with a population of approx. 8000. Majority of people living on the island are in their old age. Through our three day stay on the island, we lived in traditional Japanese houses and the local homestays. That was a lifetime experience for me. The homestay families gave warm welcome that truly won my heart. Although they were not able to speak in English, still they could manage to communicate with us so well. Being on an island, their main source of meals was sea food, but they served us food of our taste. They took us to see sunset followed by a visit to an unknown island in the middle of sea by their own boat. At night, after a fulfilling dinner, they laid comfortable beds for us and we had a sound sleep. Next morning, we enjoyed tasty breakfast and went to a nearby high school, played with grade 7 and 8 students and enjoyed a lot.
We were warmly welcomed by the mayor of Osaki Kamajima and had luncheon with him. On the last day we went to a Buddhist temple and paid our prayers in Buddhist style. We also did meditation over there to have peace of mind and get relaxed. The most enjoyable moment was the traditional Japanese drumming with the High School students. They had specially prepared performance and drumming teaching session for us.
The beauty of the island of Osaki Kamijima was magnificent to get lost in it, but our main objective of the visit was to prototype that experiential learning is the need of hour for the country like Japan. For all the incidents happened in japan, the Japanese Education system was convicted as failure. So, the organizer of this program is trying to start a new college on the island partnering with the College of Atlantic in Bar Harbour, Maine to follow their western educational style to setup a new era of education. For me, all the sessions with the local entrepreneurs and survivals in Fukushima and Hiroshima were complementary with the field work we did at those places. This was the time when I understood the logic behind attending those field works and sessions. I acknowledge the fact that even after spending thousands of dollars on a trip like this we couldn’t have gained deep knowledge about such things.