JET Talks: Temple by Temple Sneak Peek

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Chelsea is from Guam. Elayna is from Michigan. In 2009, they both moved to Japan with the JET Programme to teach English in Ehime Prefecture. While there, they traveled the 900-mile pilgrimage route in Shikoku visiting 88 temples in 15 days. With so many stories from the trip, they began looking for a way to combine their talents (Elayna illustrates; Chelsea writes) to tell these stories. Using Kickstarter, they successfully funded their project and returned to Shikoku to travel the pilgrimage route once more — this time creating illustrated hand-bound books, postcards, bracelets and more for the 270 donors that made their trip possible.

On Wed., Jan. 29, Chelsea Reidy and Elayna Snyder of will make a TED Talks-style presentation at Georgetown University (register today!) telling their story — from their time on JET through their book project, crowdfunding, and the relationships they built along the way. Until then, Chelsea and Elayna have shared some pictures from their journey…

Coming down from temple 24 we found a cat curled up on our packs.
Chelsea paused on the way down from temple 60. After biking up numerous hills, the road became too steep and we had to leave our bikes and finish the trek on foot.
This illustration was inspired by all of the help we received along the way. Here, a woman offers the girl fresh spring water.
Chelsea showing our book to friends that we made at temple 66. We ran into them several times along the route.
Elayna taking a photo with her Rolleiflex camera.
Morning light at temple 70.
The girl and Kouta rest.
Two pilgrims walking out of the temple grounds.

This is just a few of the thousands of images from their pilgrimage! Join us on Wed., Jan. 29 at Georgetown University to learn more about the Temple by Temple book project. The event is free.

register today

JET Talks is a speaker series modeled after TED Talks that will feature dynamic and interesting individuals to inspire innovative ideas and conversation on Japan within the DC community.

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