I am by no means religious, but there are often moments here that feel like something in-between mystery and spirituality. Perhaps I just watched too many Studio Ghibli films as a kid.
Twelve hours later, I was packed up and on a train headed toward a town called Ebino. I knew two things about Ebino: first, that the town hosts a cow-jumping festival every year (yes, you read that right); and second, that my company described it as a nice place, albeit being in the middle of nowhere.
As it so happens, he graduated from one of the schools I now teach at, many years ago. I complimented him on his English, and his face lit up. Excitedly, he went on to explain that he never had formal training in English conversation while in school.