End of GW

6 May

This year 憲法記念日 (Constitution Day) was on a Sunday, so it’s observed today.
So today is the last day of 黄金週間 (Golden Week).*

(* GW is a common written abbreviation for Golden Week in Japan. Thus the title of this post.)†

Tomorrow most everyone goes back to school or work.

Many people take a trip either overseas or domestically during Golden Week in Japan. So airports, train stations, and highways are crowded at this time.
At the beginning of the holidays, 下り (away from Tokyo) trains and highways are crowded…and at the end of the holidays, 上り (to Tokyo) is crowded.

Yesterday at about 2:00PM on a highway from 仙台 (Sendai, Japan) heading back to Tokyo there was a head-on collision between a passenger car and a mini-van.
Four people were injured and three elderly people died.

The accident caused the highway to be closed for a few hours, resulting in a huge traffic jam.


This Friday (8 May 2009), my oldest daughter’s high school class will take a field trip north of Tokyo to the countryside.
They’re going to make 「うどん」 (thick Japanese noodles), have a バーべキュー (BBQ), and go ライン下り (white-water rafting in a Japanese-style boat)!

I’ve been white-water rafting in the countryside in Japan with friends before…but I’ve never gone on such great field trips when I was a student in America that my kids do with their schools!
The biggest school field trip I ever took as a kid was from one side of Florida to the other for a trip to NASA Space Station…it was interesting, but not as fun as the places my kids have gone over the years.

What types of school field trips have you gone on as a student in your country?


† As I wrote above, GW is a (written) abbreviation for Golden Week in Japan. But there are many other abbreviations in Japan. For example, if you are in Japan, have you ever noticed “W” written on an ad. “W” is a Japanese abbreviation for “double“.

You might have seen, for example, “W (double) point-card points” or “Kirin W (double) Tanrei beer” (I show a photo of this beer in another post (Click here)).

4 Responses to “End of GW”

  1. Mom May 7, 2009 at 9:15 am #

    Wow, that does sound like a fun trip! There is a great river, called the French Broad River that passes through Asheville and it’s well known for the white water rafting trips that different companies offer. Maybe when the weather warms up we might take one. I would only go on the slower ones but Dad wants to take a rough one. It is a lot of fun though-we went on one trip in NC years ago and enjoyed it.
    I doubt if many schools here offer really good field trips esp. because of the economy the way it is now. it’s too bad because the kids benefit from them in so many different ways. when we were in Florida we visited the museum where Julie works and there was a class going through on a field trip. it’s a common place for schools in that area to go and it’s really a beautiful museum. One of the better ones. it’s about the history of Tampa Bay and there are so many really nice things to see. it was one of the nicest museums we have been to, esp. since it is a smaller museum. way back when I was in school, we never ever went on any field trips! we may have had a class picnic at the end of the year-whoopee!


    • tokyo5 May 7, 2009 at 7:59 pm #

      Have you been white-water rafting? It’s fun, isn’t it?


  2. gaijinnosekai May 6, 2009 at 6:04 pm #

    The most exciting school trip I had was when I was in primary school. We stayed for a few days in Wales at a camp, did activities such as canoeing. In my secondary school there were some pretty impressive trips that were organised but my parents could never afford the fee, there was one trip to Egypt and another one to New York. (It’s not really like this at all British schools, I was in a private school but was only there on a scholarship, my parents wouldn’t have been able to afford my tuition fees otherwise). I actually did a tour for some Japanese high school students that came on a trip to London a few weeks ago. JTB actually have an office in London, I was hired by them with a few other students. Anyway, hope your daughter enjoys her trip!


    • tokyo5 May 6, 2009 at 6:16 pm #

      Yeah, I know that private schools in America and Japan go on overseas trips, too.

      But my kids go to public school…and I did too when I was a kid. And my kids’ field trips are much better than any that I’ve ever gone on.

      Your school went to Egypt?
      That must’ve been interesting! Too bad you weren’t able to go.

      >I actually did a tour for some Japanese high school students that came on a trip to London a few weeks ago.

      That must’ve been fun to show your city.


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