By Justin Woodard
Hey everyone! Quick editor’s note: This is the first in (hopefully) a series of articles focused on current and former Ehime JETs, and the media they create. I mainly want to focus on blogs and Youtube channels, but basically anything local JETs create is fair game! If you are or were an Ehime JET and would like to share your blog, channel or etc with us, please get in touch at email@example.com.
On a bright and sunny day during a pandemic filled Golden Week, I hopped on my bike and started riding to a beautiful little shrine in a small suburb just outside of Matsuyama called Hojo. I had my phone in hand and a goal in my head that started back before I came to Japan. One day as I was sitting in my college fraternity watching the “Abroad in Japan” channel on YouTube, I thought to myself that it would be a lot of fun to go around Japan filming the places I get to visit, just like the sarcastic British guy I was watching. Now there could also be a sarcastic American guy making YouTube videos. Fast forward two years and I’m on my bike pedaling past rice fields and old homes until I arrived at my favorite shrine in Hojo. As I was parking my bike, I realized I didn’t have any plans for what I was going to talk about in my first video, so I improvised, as all good YouTubers do. I started talking about the proper way to enter and exit a shrine as well as the dos and don’ts while praying so as not to offend the gods of Shintoism.Continue reading