George Arbanas was 15 when he participated in the 2014 St. Louis-Ishinomaki Friendship Program. He is currently working as a summer intern with a company called Education First. George was able to meet with his host family from the exchange in March of this year. Please see his message below.
Hello again! I’m emailing you while on the Shinkansen to Sendai — I was able to take some time off from my internship this week to visit everyone in Ishinomaki! Looking at memories on Facebook, it’s hard to believe I was there last 4 years ago. As today is the start of the Kawabiraki Matsuri, I’m feelig quite nostalgic already. I’m looking forward to seeing everyone again, and I’ll send photos when I’m able!
Thank you again for allowing me to be a part of the TOMODACHI project. To say that it has changed my life would be an understatement. I’m hoping to become fluent enough in Japanese to be able to join a company in Tokyo once I graduate, and I would have never been able to make such a decision had I not visited Ishinomaki and Sendai with TOMODACHI. So thank you again!
Photographs Courtesy of Hiroshi Abe