NICE workcamp, Syounan, Kanagawa, Japan, 1998

I joined only the latter half.
Location Tebiro, Kamakura-city, Kanagawa, Japan. The nearby stations are Fujisawa St. and Ofuna St., but they are out of walking distance. Syounan monorail is also available.
Members Japan 4, Germany 2, Czeck 2, Korea 1. About 10 others who partly joined like me.
Life We slept in sleeping bag on the floor at Kataoka kindergarden. Everything were tiny... chairs, toilets, sinks. It's amusing to return to kindergarden after a long interval. The president of kindergarden kindly let us use kitchen, pianos, beach ball and play instruments.
Work According to others, they helped the summer festival of kindergarden in the first week. In the second week, we helped field work in Ohira farm, where organic vegetables are grown, and had some discussions on organic agriculture. The work finished before four, and we enjoyed long free time.
Foods We took turns to prepare breakfast and supper. Ohira family, owner of farm, served us huge lunch to yield leftover for suppers and breakfasts.

Aug 24 (Mon) I arrived there late in the evening. I was exhausted after walking 3km from the station. It seemed there's no entrance to kindergarden. Uryaaa!! I jumped over the main gate by berry-roll style with Karate spirit, to join the camp finally. We went to Sentou (public bath). Every day, we had nice exercise to Sentou which is 15 minutes by bicycle. Who is mistress of Sentou??

Aug 25 (Tue) In the morning (9:00 -- 12:00), we weeded carrot and tomato field, and took a green house apart. It was so hot that the leader shifted the working hour 1hr earlier from the following day. We discussed organic agriculture in the afternoon. The Czeck and German members stated the situation of organic agriculture in their countries. In Czeck, neither producers nor consumers are conscious of it, and the distribution system is weak now. In Germany, organized distribution system and certification system are arranged.

Aug 26 (Wed) We kept on working with green house in the morning. In the afternoon, we discussed organic agriculture in Japan and Korea. Uum, Japanese members prepared poorly. Summer festival of TORAY, an industrial company, in the evening (see photo). We took part in Bon-dance (Japanese traditional dance). Good experience for foreign members. You guys have to spread this dance in your countries!

Aug 27 (Thu) Free day. 4 visited Tokyo, and 6 went to Yokohama. Our Yokohama group saw the port of Sakuragi-cho, ate in China town, visited Sankeien, a Japanese garden, in Honmoku. When we were eating dinner in Ofuna, we encountered a very, very, very heavy rainfall. Yes, a big and slow typhoon was coming.

Aug 28 (Fri) No outdoor work because of typhoon. In the afternoon, we visited a local rice field, and took afternoon tea at Mos Burger, a hamburger shop, which uses organic vegetables. A German member said Mac is more delicious... I don't agree with her!

Aug 29 (Sat) Last work! Field work all the day. In the afternoon, we weeded a green house, eggplant field and green pepper field. Everyone but me was bitten by many mosquitos. No mosquitos came to me because I am a good person. More weekend participants arrived in the evening, and we went out for Karaoke.

Aug 30 (Sun) We cleaned the kindergarden. Thank you very much... In the afternoon, We had farewell barbecue party with local people under the record-breaking rainfall. I was bare-footed. We enjoyed bowling in the evening. One guy who is hated by mosquitos fell during his approach running. Another dropped her ball during her approach. We stayed up late and talked a lot to enjoy the last night.

Aug 31 (Mon) We went out for lunch with the presidents of kindergarden, and we said good-bye. I brought back some vegetables as souvenir. The only food on my dish was pumpkin for sucessive four days. Yes, I love it, and finally I became a pumpkin man.


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