For my CIP, I participated in an English-speaking circle called Klexon. Klexon took place every Tuesday from 7-9pm. Through this CIP, I was able to speak to college students and working people. The first hour consisted of 10 minute talks with 6 people, and the second hour involved group conversations.
I had a few observations during my time at Klexon. Most Japanese people studied English for work purpose or in order to gain a better advantage for job hunting. One interesting reason I heard for studying English was for talking with people at concerts. One person said he enjoyed metal music and wanted to learn English so that he could go to concerts and talk with other people. Another observation I had was that when I asked people where they want to go abroad, they usually said Canada or Australia. I thought it was interesting that many did not say America. One girl said she did not like New York because it was too loud, crowded, and dirty. Also, many Japanese people were courageous and wanted to speak with foreigners fluent in English. When some people learned that I would be returning to America, they would be disappointed because they wanted more chances to speak with foreigners.
While I initially hated Klexon because of the late meeting time, I became good friends with this one Japanese girl so I became more appreciative of Klexon. We went to Higashiyama together, rented kimonos and walked around in Arashiyama, and ate delicious foods. Overall, Klexon was a fun experience and I had the opportunity to learn more about the culture and engage in various conversations.