DAILY JOURNALS

Japan 2018 - UNEDITED

Day 3

 

Group 1 (Roman, Brandhon & David)

 

Roman Silva Jr.

Day 3:

We woke up fairly early today at 6:30 for breakfast at the hotel. The breakfast was interesting as it incorporated many American traditional breakfast options as well as those of the Asian culture. After breakfast, we promptly checked out of our hotel and left to a bus station where we waited for quite some time to travel to our next location.

 

When the bus finally arrived we loaded all of our luggage and climbed aboard. The bus ride was through the city was bumpy and had some traffic; however, when we pushed through the country side we were surrounded by absolutely beauty. Traveling through tunnels carved into a green jungle, the likes of which I’ve never seen before in the US, was definitely one of my favorite highlights of the trip.

 

The arrival to our destination sparked interest in the team as our hotel is right on the water. After a brief tour of the area we rested and moved on to the clinic we had scheduled for the night.

 

At the clinic the kids were very responsive and eager to learn. Their work ethic was duly noted and very impressive for their age. After several ball handling drills, we scrimmaged the team. As we were leaving many of the players wanted to take pictures with us and a few ever asked for signatures. We waited several minutes for our shuttle to arrive and headed back to the hotel.

 

 

Brandhon Thomas

Today we went to breakfast at 6:30 in the morning at our hotel. There were foods I’l wasn’t very familiar with so I didn’t eat them. After that we went to the bus station to catch our bus that was scheduled to leave at 10. While we were waiting, we went to see a statue and took pictures by it. The bus ride was a little over three hours and we saw a lot of farms and trees. After the bus ride ended, we were picked up on a bus and taken to our hotel that is right by a beach. We went a took some team pictures on the beach then headed to the gym to do a clinic for the kids. They worked really hard and even when they messed up never stopped. Also, they were much more skilled than I expected. After we put them through some drills, we played against them in a friendly scrimmage. It was good to see them having fun and competing against us even though we are older. After the game, we took pictures with them and headed back to the hotel.

 

 

David Perry

Day3: Today we woke up for breakfast at 6:30 that was a heartbreaker because I’m used to waking up at like 8:30. But the breakfast was ok I just ate bread and orange juice .We took a bus to a new place this time we were in dorms. The dorms were nice I like the look around the place we’re right on the coast and have a ocean view. We took pictures on the stairs by the beach and coach coop tripped but it wasn’t funny I thought he torn something tbh. After that we worked a clinic and helped some kids get better. The kids out here are more passionate about basketball because they aren’t worried about social media and other distractions. That’s good so they can just focus on getting better I was thinking when I get back I’m going to try not to be on social media till the school year starts. But the clinic was fun the kids enjoyed it and we had them working . We scrimmaged after the clinic the kids were all under 5 foot so we just threw it in the post and cut off that. I was pulling jump shots but I don’t know why I wasn’t making them maybe my shot is broke now? Hmm the world will never know . But I think it’s the basketballs they use are different from ours we have grip on ours.

 

 

Group 2 (Austin, Ryan & Khristofer)

 

Austin Azarovitz - So today we did have to travel from our small hotel and went to a small town close to the ocean. The name is hard to pronounce but it stared with an m. After the 3 hour buss ride with the amazing scenery we pulled up on a hotel right on the beach called Aoshima Fisherman’s Beachside & Spa. The last part is very ironic because there is no spa, only a hot spring. And there is only one rule for the hot spring and that rule was tradition. The rule is that you have to wear your birthday suit. If you don’t know what that is it pretty much means you have to go in there nude. This hot spring rule applies to all community showers too. I have yet to try that. After arrival we went up to our room and o....my....gosh. They are nice AF!! It is a form of like 16 beds and all of them have cretans around them and have a light in the bed with an outlet inside every single one of them. I am very disappointed with myself with the first half of the game but I 100% picked it up the second half. Tomorrow’s Weill only have a clinic so it is like our day off. I wish I stayed up to see what was going on last night but I was dead tired. I just tried then turned on my music and crashed. I will have to see what went down last night.

 

 

Ryan Haywood

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Khristofer Newsome

Deer parents, One reason we woke up Thursday morning we had breakfast that the hotel provided us, but I only had toast wit strawberry jam because I didn’t want to take a chance on the breakfast. After that we had to pack up our things and head to the bus station which was like a 10 minute walk. Once we got to the bus station we walked over to a statue that was around the corner and everyone took pictures with it, then we walked back and got on the bus, the next bus ride was 3 hours to another city. Once we got to the city we got off that bus and got on to a smaller bus and it took us to out next hotel. The hotel is really nice it’s right by the ocean and the way the rooms are set up it’s like a dorm and has bunk beds, it’s really cool. After we brought up our stuff we all went down by the ocean and took pictures by the ocean. A couple of us went to eat at this market which was up the street. I got a burger from the food truck that was in front, it was really good. After that we got back on the bus and went to this place, I think it was a rec center where we did a clinic with younger kids and then we played against them. After the game we took a lot of pictures with the players. Once we got home we had food waiting for us at the hotel. After I ate I went to sleep. Love you, KHRIS

 

Group 3 (Christian, Joel & Josh)

 

Christian Finney

 Yesterday was busy as usual. We checked out of our hotel around 9:30 in the morning and walked to the bus station to pick us up and take us to  Miyazaki which is 3 hours from the city we departed from. While we where waiting for the bus to arrive the team went to go see this beautiful castle with nice statues and a lake near right by it. Once the bus came we where on the road for 3 hours and I was anxious to get off the bus already because my legs started cramping. Once we arrived in Miyazaki the weather changes from being sunny and hot to rainy and windy. When we arrived at the hotel I was expecting small things again like the beds, sink and etc.

 

Later that night we worked a clinic like we do back home the kids where doing various drills that we do such as 2 ball ball handling, change of directions and etc. Once they finished with the drills they wanted to play against us but they had like 7 and 8 year olds on the team so it was kind of strange that they wanted to play with us knowing we where bigger and stronger then them. In conclusion of course we won the game by a blow out but it was only to make the kids better.

 

 

Joshua Benjamin

Japan has still been a cool experience. Today we woke up, ate breakfast amd had a 3 hour bus ride to our next hotel. We then went to the beach and took pictures as a team. It was cool to see a different ocean for the first time. After that we went and got some lunch and went back to the hotel. Next we had an hour and a half bus rode to a clinic where we helped lots of Japanese kids improve t basketball. We helped them with some different drills it was a really good experience helping the youth out here.

 

Joel Finney

Today we got up and ate breakfast at the hotel but it was like they were serving dinner or something cause they served some rice and what appeared to be some type of Japanese dishes, which really weren’t appealing to me, So I ended up just eating some bread and some type of Japanese bacon they had which was decent considering the circumstances. After that I went back to my room to get ready because we had to switch hotels again because we were heading to another city. I had to leave my room just to brush my team in the hotel bathroom because we didn’t have one in our rooms as well as a shower. After I brushed my teeth everybody was all packed up and ready to go and start the day .

When we left the hotel we stopped by the Kumamoto castle before we got into our next bus. It was really nice and ancient and it had a river flowing through it which made it even more nicer . We all took pictures at the castle then got ready to board the bus to Miyazaki which was a 3 hour drive and the next city we were going too. When we reached our destination we arrived at this beautiful hotel by the ocean and it was a total upgrade in the ones we have been staying in before because of how nice it was . We all went by the ocean to take pictures and walk down the boardwalk to view the sight we were at . After we were done with that , we went to go get something to eat and they finally had something I heard of before and I was able to enjoy? Which was a bacon cheeseburger from a food truck which was pretty good .

 

After we ate , we headed of to a school where we helped kids by performing a clinic and put them through drills in our dribbling routine they we do daily . I was pretty shocked on how good most of the kids were because they were so young. After the clinic was over , the coach wanted us to play against them and I was shocked because they were so little , but they really wanted to play us so I was like cool then . We ended up blowing them out but it was all fun and the kids loved it . After they took pictures with us and greeted us with respect showing how grateful they were to have this opportunity to learn under us . After this we left when back home were I took a shower and went to sleep .

 

 

 

 

Group 4 (Ebony, Bryant & Chris)

 

Ebony Cooper

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Chris Obiekeake

When I got to the hotel inthe city of Miyazaki. I was shocked by how much better it was than the other hotels. It was by the  beach and had a spa, the beds are big, and the shower is actually pretty good. After I put my luggage away I went to  the beach and got some seashells. I even found a ring.

 

After that I went to a near by store to buy lunch. The food tasted really good.

 

When I was done at the store, me and my teammates went to a clinic and helped their kids with drills. After the drills we did a scrimmage.

 

Bryant Obiekea

Yesterday we went to Miyazaki city which turned out to be a beautiful place. It was a nice resort by the beach. We got our selfs situated and then did couple of thing. Worked by the beach, went to grab something to eat and went to have a work out and a game with some kids. It was nice yesterday. And best part, was that I finally had my own bed to sleep in and that wonderful regular size shower. Men, finally I took a shower in a normal size shower.

 

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Day 1 & 2

 

Group 1 (Roman, Brandhon & David)

 

Roman Silva Jr.

The flight from LAX to Tokyo took in total 13 hours and I felt everyone one of them. I’ve never been on a plane for so long and I dread the flight back home. After our connecting flight to Fukuoka we were met by our guide and after a quick meal we were taken to our hotel for the night.

 

After waking up we ate at the food court of a train station and departed to Kumamoto on a two hour bus trip. I was surprised to see just how green the rural parts of Japan really are. Also, the use of public transportation was and continues to be truly eye opening and gives a nice insight to the daily life of the working class here in Japan.

 

Moving on from are departure from Fukuoka, we arrived at our next hotel before we left for our daily scrimmage. And after a short, crowded train ride, we arrived at the gym. The scrimmage itself was competitive as well as it was interesting to see the different styles that teams from other countries play with.

 

Finally, we came to the conclusion of the day after a surprisingly tasty meal at a local restaurant. A short walk back to the hotel and we get to do it all over again tomorrow.

 

 

Brandhon Thomas

We took off from LAX around 1:15 on a pretty big plane. It took us 11 hours to get to Tokyo. I watched two movies and slept for a bit on the first plane ride but I slept the whole way on the second. The second flight was from Tokyo to Fukuoka, where we stayed the first night. I found it weird that the hotel rooms didn’t have showers in them. There was only a community shower, where this is one open room to shower and you have to be naked. I didn’t understand the reason why, but that’s a apart of Japanese culture. Also, most of the rooms are very small because most of the people here are smaller than us. It’s a lot different than the US, but I still like it. I have used public transportation more in the past two days out here than I have my whole life. There were trains on the street and underground. It must be common out here because it was crowded every time we got on a bus or a train. Today, we took a bus to a different city that was two hours away, where we played our first game. We played pretty well as a team. It was a bit awkward at first playing against the team because they travel a lot but I guess it’s not called here. We ended up winning and going back to our hotel to rest and get ready to travel to another city for tomorrow.

 

 

David Perry

Day 1: The first day was adventurous I got at least a mile of walking in. The hotels we stayed at we nice because I fell right to sleep but I kinda think it was because we didn’t have any English channels on the television but any ways I slept good. And I’ve been on a McDonald’s diet because I don’t want to buy something and throw it away and waste anyone’s money. But I think this trip is going to get more fun. They tried to tell us to try out there traditions how they take showers we everyone in one bathroom but I wasn’t going to. We saw so many things while walking there was 7 elevens everywhere and tall buildings. The games were interesting we played 6 10 min quarters and after we played it looked like the other team was about to start a practice and it was like 930 I felt bad but there only going to get better . But during the game they didn’t call fouls evenly on both side they gave the other team literally a foul every time. They dribble towards the basket it was automatic they was gonna get a foul call. And they didn’t call one travel they where taking 4 steps on their euro steps.

 

 

Group 2 (Austin, Ryan & Khristofer)

 

Austin Azarovitz - Our first day in Japan we landed in Tokyo. I couldn’t see anything so I have no idea what the landscape looked like. After that we flew to Fukuoko and it was such an amazing experience. The buildings were different and the language of course. The next day we got up and went to the subway and got on a charter buss and drove to the high school/college. We played 6 games each lasting 10 min long. We won the game 108 to 112. I have enjoyed everything in Japan and can’t wait to try new food and experience a whole new culture.

 

 

Ryan Haywood

So far in Japan it has been a different experience. It makes you appreciate the things that we have back home in America. Our first day we went into a hotel and it was much different than how I expected it. I stayed in a room that was suppose to have three beds and I was expecting to be back home. However, it was just three small mattress’ on the floor piled next to each other. The rooms were small and the bathrooms were small. It was a much different experience. Also, throughout the day we have been taking the public bus and train to travel from place to place. It’s a first time experience for me because I have never taken any public transportation of that sort before. We traveled to our basketball game by a train and then walked the rest of the way. Walking through the school in Japan, everyone looks at us and waves hello. Down here they also play basketball a little different which makes you have a different view of how other cultures play, but all in all it’s the same. Also, the food is much different than America’s food. They have a 7 11 down here in Japan and Starbucks but it is still different. I’m a really picky eater so it’s hard to find things I like down here. The second hotel that we are staying in tonight is a little better than the first hotel but still not the best, of what I’m use too. Everything is much smaller here and it kinda puts us in a culture shock. However, all in all this trip has been adventurous for the past two and I know the next couple of days will be fun.

 

 

Khristofer Newsome

Deer lovely parents

 After our flight, which was a good flight. We got off the plane then got our bags, after we got our bags we met a student that has been helping us and show us to our destinations. We then got on the subway and went to McDonalds to eat, the menu was a lot different from back home. After we got out food we took a bus to our hotel. The hotel was nice but the rooms were small. Once I got to the room I went straight to sleep. The next morning we had to leave the hotel by 10am to another hotel, we got breakfast in side the train station the we got on a charter bus to go to the next city which was a 2 hour drive. The drive was great, there was a lot to see and a lot of things to take pictures of. Once we got off the bus we walked to our hotel and checked in and took our bags to the room. We had to do it fast because we had to hurry up to get to our game which was a 20 minute train ride. The game was at a high school and the gym was on the second floor of the building, when we walked in we had to take our shoes off. We were first told that we were going to play six quarters but only played five. The game was different because they travel out here and it’s okay. After the game we went to this place similar to a strip like in Vegas and we got food, I had pork and rice and an apple juice, it was really good. We then came back to our rooms and I went to sleep.

 

    Love you, can’t wait to see you. KHRIS

 

Group 3 (Christian, Joel & Josh)

 

Christian Finney

The trip so far has been full of adventures from being on the plane for twelve hours then landing in Tokyo and then being back on the plane again for another two hours to get to Fukuoka. Once we arrived we in Fukuoka we had to take 2 trains to get to the bust stop by the hotel we where staying in.

 

 

Joshua Benjamin

The hotels out here are totally different from U.S hotels they don’t have bathrooms inside them and they have a community bathroom for  all the guess that are staying in the hotel. The beds where not what I expected to be we slept on thin mattress on the floor that where all bundled up next to each other.

 

The next day we woke up around 9:00 to leave by ten to catch the bus to get something to eat and then from there we waited on the charter  bus to take us to are next destination which was Kumamoto. Once we arrived we had to take the train to arrive at are hotel.

 

To end the day off  we had a scrimmage against a team from Japan where we played 5 10 min quarter games in which we won.

 

Joel Finney

I have had a good time in Japan so far. We had a 14 hour flight from Los Angeles to Japan. We have traveled on city busses public trains, and walked a whole lot to get from place to place here in Japan. All I have ate so far is McDonalds really. I’m not with the Japanese food to be honest. We won our first game so that’s good. I am having a good time with my teammates. We have told a lot of jokes and we are bonding well. The only real complaints I have is that we are walking a lot and the hotel room doesn’t have bathroom. I have to brush my teeth, use the

restroom, and “shower” in the community restroom. Other than that the trip has been great and I am excited to see what

 

Japan has been a wonderful experience so far . Yesterday day we stayed in a pretty unique hotel that showed us what Japanese culture is like . This morning we packed all of our things and went to go get breakfast before we traveled to our new destination

After we took the bus to eat. We got back on another bus but this time it was charter bus to take us to the next city which was Kumamoto. After the two our drive we finally made it to our destination and we stopped for drinks at a local 7 11 which is totally different from the one in America because they have no familiar drinks I was a costumed too , so I just tried a Japanese drink that was pretty good . After 7/ 11 we boarded  into our new hotel and got ready for our game . The game was a good experience and was fun to play in another country and see the talent levels from this country

 

 

 

Group 4 (Ebony, Bryant & Chris)

 

Ebony Cooper

Japan is nothing how I expected it to be. To be fairly honest, I didn’t really have a clue as to what it would be like. I kind of imagined it to be like New York in a way, but it is NOT (at least the smaller cities aren’t). When we arrived in Japan, I was so hungry because I didn’t really like the food we got on the airplane. We met our translator and escort, Shota (I don’t know how to spell his name), waited for our luggage, and then road on a subway train. Luckily, we found a McDonald’s after we got off the train, so we made a mass order and took the food to go. We ate while we walked to the hotel. My back was hurting very badly because I had a bunch of things in my back pack. The hotel was not what I had expected either. I shortly found out that the Japanese really embrace togetherness and community because apparently, they don’t have showers in the rooms! They have community showers and and bathrooms and such. I am not an open person, so there was no way that I was going to use the community showers. I ended up using the hand towels in the room to wash up. I do have to say, the beds were not bad at all; I slept very peacefully that night, especially because I was tired from all of the walking.

 

When I woke up the next morning, I was excited and ready for what the day had in store for us. For breakfast, we went to this place with hundreds of restaurants and food stands, and we were able to pick what we wanted to eat. However, some of us players decided to go to McDonalds again because nothing seemed to interest our taste buds. At McDonalds I thought I had order a regular sausage McMuffin like they have in America, but it ended up being a cheeseburger with an egg on top along with ketchup, mustard, onions, and pickles. I thought that that was so weird but I realized that jack in the box also does that. Anyways, after breakfast we took another subway train to a bus station, and from there we drove about 2 hours to the next city. After we got off the bus, we had to walk again to our hotel. By then I was in excruciating pain (just kidding) from carrying my heavy back pack and pulling my suitcase. We dropped off our things at the hotel and walked back to where we were to get a “light snack” before the game. Then we road a trolly to the game (we still had to walk some distance to get to the actual gym). When we got to the school that the gym was at, some of the school kids were very nice to us and waved and said hello to us. I felt very welcomed to be there. From then we played 5 10-minute segments, and we ended up winning the game! For extra points, i think I played pretty well :). After that, we road the trolly back to get some food. There were so many options and places to choose from; my dad and I spent like 30 minutes just walking around trying to find a place to eat. Low and behold, we just ate at McDonalds again! I was so irritated because I was tired and hungry, and I didn’t like the chicken nuggets that I order too much. You can imagine that I knocked out right when I got to my room at the hotel, and I slept very well again through the night. So not an awful first two days. I give it a 6/10 [thumbs up]

 

 

Chris Obiekea

The flight from LAX to Tokyo was 13 hours. I was very uncomfortable until I found out that they had chocolates and movies I wanted to watch. When I got to Tokyo I was surprised by how colorful it was.

 

When I got to the hotel I was welcomed with a super tiny sink, a super thin mattress on the floor, and a super small table designed for Smurf's (movie reference). Don't even get me started about the trash cans they were so small that I think a single toilet paper could have filled it up. But I managed.

 

 At the game we had 6 to 10 min. games and it was pretty fun and Chris (one of the players) made and lob pass dunk. But don't get me started with the travels.

Bryant Obiekea

 

My visit to Japan has been interesting. The first thing I have to say is....... wow, this city was built for small people.

Seriously, for example the bathroom is so small that when I sit on the toilet my knees touch the door. When I take a shower I can not stand up, I had to take shower on my knees. I also could not turn to scrub my back because I get my elbows bruised from hitting them on the wall. It seems like the bathrooms were built for a toddler. However, I am having fun, although I am still wondering how can people get use to living in this dollhouse-like rooms and bathrooms.

 

 

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