Category: 日本 in General

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Kusatsu Marathon

June 3, 2011 | 日本 in General | 2 Comments

Kusatsu Marthon Runners

Waking to a blaring alarm clock at 4:45am on a Sunday is not everyone’s idea of a pleasant morning. But for me, May 29th was my first ‘marathon’ – something I’d been quite nervous and excited about for a long time! (more…)

Fuel Efficiency Girl Heidi

December 20, 2010 | 日本 in General | No Comments

You see them every day, dangling from your student’s backpacks and adorning their pencil cases. Trinkets and curios of popular characters your students subscribe to, and for the most part they are recognizable, like Totoro or Hello Kitty. But sometimes a character so cripplingly bizarre pops up that you suddenly find yourself on the wrong side of a vaguely unsettling generation gap, as you are grossly uninformed as to what is popular with your students. Care to be let back into the loop? (more…)

Thoughts on Japan

December 17, 2010 | 日本 in General | 1 Comment

A few weeks before I left North Carolina for Japan, I met my friend Juan Eduardo for a coffee at Starbucks. He is an immigrant from El Salvador who has lived in the U.S. for the past six years. We were sitting at the metal café tables outside the shop, watching the traffic go by on Battleground Avenue and enjoying the warm June sun. (more…)

Japan is indeed an intriguing place which often enchants visitors and foreign residents alike. The bright lights of Tokyo, the temples of Kyoto, the tropics of Okinawa, the care-free nature of Hanami and Matsuri season, would make anyone simply love the land of the rising sun. I have been here a little over a year and a half and constantly find myself loving this place more and more but also, at times, feeling immensely frustrated with it, in fact, sometimes hating it all together. (more…)

Hanami-zake

April 3, 2010 | 日本 in General | 1 Comment

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According to Philip Harper, author of “The Book of Sake: A Connoisseur’s Guide”, former JET Programme participant (1988-1991), and now the sake brewmaster (toji) at Daimon Shuzo in Osaka Prefecture:

“Enjoying whatever flowers are in bloom is one of the seasonal pleasures of Japanese life. Flower-viewing revelries are not complete without sake—a drink affectionately referred to as hanami-zake.” (more…)

A Night at the Grand Sumo Tournament

February 9, 2010 | 日本 in General | No Comments

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On Saturday, January 16th, I attended the first major sumo event of the year in Japan. I have been hooked on the sport since attending my first tournament last Silver Week. While in Japan, I hope to attend as many matches as possible. This competition proved to be just as exciting, if not more, than my previous experience. (more…)