Yesterday I gave my final presentation and attended my sayonara (good-bye) dinner. My presentation was 15 minutes, and in Japanese. Yep, Japanese. Surprisingly, I wasn't too nervous. I've sort of stopped getting nervous about presentations because I have a reasonable amount of confidence in myself and my ability to present, and being nervous doesn't help. Just like worrying.
So the presentation went well - but it was half the time it should have been. Oops. It was 7, instead of 15 minutes. But then it ended up taking 25 because it sparked a discussion on the unit of Watt-Hour; an efficiency measurement. So...that was amusing. I explained it, and then they all discussed it and I sat and sort of giggled. It was pretty funny - some people got it, some people didn't, some people just thought it was useless. After my presentation, our manager presented me with a certificate of Internship Completion, and everyone clapped.
After my presentation, I went to sell popcorn. Presentations and popcorn? Why, you ask? Our company has quite a few labs and offices and industrial space in this area, and every year they put on a community festival - I suspect to gain the goodwill of the community and be involved (good ideas, obviously). So I put on my fancy shirt and sold popcorn. I had to teach them how. The method was to pop the popcorn (without oil) then sprinkle it with salt, and wonder why it tasted bland... so I introduced them to the importance of oil, as well as putting the salt in with the oil. Voila - yummy popcorn! Unfortunately, my popcorn time was cut short by my sayonara dinner.
We had sushi and random goodies and some laughs. The two other female members of the team and I had the grandest time, taking silly pictures and laughing and talking. And guess what. I was talking mostly in Japanese. Yay! At the end, after we cleaned off the tables, Takemori-San presented me with a picture (from Mt. Takamiyama) with notes and messages from anyone. I didn't mean to. But I cried. Just a little. I hope no one noticed. But they probably did. Then I whipped out my notes and thanked them all for everything and said I would miss them and Japan. Someone suggested karaoke, so we headed off to karaoke!
On the way, I asked people what their note said (I don't read Japanese / Kanjii). Some were simple, thank you's and good luck's. But others made me smile and cry at the same time. One of the girls said she wrote this..."Stephanie, every time see me, smile. So beautiful! Makes my heart feel warm and happy. I will miss you." Other people told me to come back, and that they had good memories with me. It was touching, to say the least, and made me want to leave even less. (Imagine that...if I could stay longer here, I would. In January I couldn't have imagined wanting to stay.)
We got to karaoke and had a wonderful time! English and Japanese songs...and I even sang one in Japanese (sort of) - they were impressed and thought it was great. It was 2.5 hours of fun and great memories, but it was still a little sad. I kept thinking about how I would probably never get to do this with these people again. I also wished I had gotten to know some of them better. There were also two university students that have just finished a three week internship, and I wish I could hang out with them more! They were a lot of fun, and pretty cute. Especially one of them - and he totally has a crush on me. Hehe. Anyways...it was a great evening, a little bittersweet, but I wouldn't have traded it for anything!
Now I am at work, on my last day...cleaning up, organizing, etc. I'm going to leave some Canadian pins and magnets with everyone and tell them not to forget me, and email me if they will be in Canada. I'm going to miss it here. A lot.