Popcorn Balls and Some Volcano-age

I had a nice full day at work today.  Five classes (of six total periods), and I spent the first period preparing for the three different lessons I taught.  I scarfed lunch so I could drive to a school 15 minutes away to talk about charity: water.  Not sure how many donations I got as I had to book it out of there so I could teach fifth period.

So in lieu of going to the gym and getting healthy (who needs to be healthy, anyway?  overrated), I thought I’d share some pictures.

So the following are from my third and final day making popcorn balls at my schools.  I halved the recipe that I got from Paula Deen on foodnetwork.com, making about 8-12 balls per batch depending on the size.  Altogether, I supervised the making of 37 batches of popcorn balls, not including the batches I made myself.

Popcorn Balls 1

Some recipe-age.

Popcorn Balls 2

An example of the finished product.

Popcorn Balls 3

Hard at work smooshing the popcorn into balls.

So that happened the week before Halloween.

Starting on Halloween I had my “big trip” to Kagoshima and Yakushima.  Here’s a map for some perspective:


So we have my island (Iki) in the north, the city of Kagoshima and home of the volcano in the pictures to follow, and finally the lovely island of Yakushima.

I enjoyed Kagoshima quite a bit.  The city reminds me a lot of Nagasaki in terms of size, though unlike Nagasaki it’s very flat.  I appreciate that.  Flat cities are easier to walk around in.  However, I have to say that I like the harbor in Nagasaki better than Kagoshima–Dejima Wharf is a wonderful place, and they have a fantastic art museum right next door.  However, the view of Sakurajima, the island that holds Kagoshima’s resident active volcano, is something quite interesting to behold.

Kago-Yaku-Naga 63

The view of Kagoshima and Sakurajima (spewing ash) from the top of a ferris wheel.

Kago-Yaku-Naga 58

Sakurajima at sunset--this was the following day. Less ash. Probably because it'd been raining pretty hard the whole morning.

Kago-Yaku-Naga 54

Kagoshima at night as viewed from Sakurajima.

And just because it’s not a real adventure unless I make a fool of myself at some point, the following:

Kago-Yaku-Naga 61

Wait a second... that's not Santa Claus... someone lied to me!

Luckily, the bear was not hurt during the taking of this photograph.

I plan on going over Yakushima over the next few days with maybe a bit more detail as well.  But we’ll see.  Don’t get greedy.

Thanksgiving soon!  I ordered the turkeys, cranberries, and other foods that I can’t get on Iki.  Here’s hoping nothing goes wrong…