KIDS: CWSE Report 4

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Children's World Summit for the Environment



Koby's Report #4 - Trip to the Summit on the Train

On Monday July 25th, we finally checked out of the hotel and took a taxi to the Tokyo train station.  We had so much luggage that we had to take two taxis and even that was a very tight fit. At Tokyo station we dragged out bags up to the ticket counter where Ms. Blanchette tried to get our tickets.  Unfortunately, the receptionist at the counter would not take Ms. Blanchette's credit card. Ms. Blanchette begged her to call the manager.  Meanwhile, the four of us kids paced up and down the hallway watching the clock as it got closer and closer to our train's departure time. We were all worried. What could be taking Ms. Blanchette so long?  Would we make it to the train on time?  Ms. Blanchette walked out of the ticket counter looking a little disappointed.  By that time we had missed our scheduled train. She told us the next bullet train was scheduled to leave in a half hour. We bought sandwiches for the train ride and sat at the platform waiting for our ride to pull up. 

The bullet train arrived right on the minute. As it screeched to a halt we talked about how it didn't look like it was going any faster than the subways.  But once we got on, and rolled out of the station you could tell it was no ordinary train.  We must have been going at least 100 miles per hour if not more.  The houses and rice fields we past looked mostly like a blur of color......come and gone so fast you could barely tell what it was you were seeing.  It was fast. 

About an hour in, we passed Mount Fuji, which you could barely see through the summer haze. The gigantic volcano stood alone.  It appeared to have snow on top, but it could have just as easily been a thicker layer of haze. 

By this time we had all gotten so used to the speed of the train, that it just felt like we were in a car going the normal speed. Jaimee said that she never thought we were going fast in the first place, but none of us believed her, because at the beginning it was obvious we were going faster than what we were used to.

After 2 hours the trained slowed and stopped at Toyohashi Station. We pulled all of our suitcases off the train and rode down the escalator to a coach bus sitting at the curb waiting for us. Two Japanese people met us outside holding up World Summit signs and led us to the right bus. 

On the bus we saw some of our future conference friends for the first time. I think most of us were a little tired and nervous so we didn't talk very much. Most of the people looked Japanese and they probably wouldn't have understood us anyway.  The majority of the people attending the Summit were from Japan. I don't know how long we sat on the bus. I think I fell asleep. 

Upon arriving on the Nikko Hotel we were immediately pulled in to have our ID's made. After we had gotten our Ids a Japanese man came up to us and started shaking our hands.  He was talking to us in English, but with a very strong accent, and I'm not exactly sure what he was saying, but he seemed to find himself pretty funny.  We later found out that he was from Gujo where we would be staying with a host family after the Summit. During his babbling he led us to a small back room in the hotel where there was an information table about the Gujo trip. One of his friends introduced him, in understandable English, and showed us around the Gujo exhibit. The two of them taught us to play three Japanese games including the Japanese New Year's top, a wooden ball catching game, and a game with a mallet and a stack of blocks.  Even after hearing the directions three or four times, I still didn't understand the last game. I think it was something like Jenga.  After hearing all about Gujo, they sent us off to dinner where we ate and then went to bed.

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Content Last Modified on 1/31/2007 3:46:05 PM