Archive for the ‘travel’ Category

The Nose Kaido (能勢街道) is an ancient road that runs from the north part of the city of Osaka, through Toyonaka and Ikeda, and finally up into the Nose area in the far north of Osaka Prefecture.  “Nose” is pronounced like “no say” — not like that large thing that protrudes from your face.  The […]



Shigaraki, a small town in Shiga Prefecture, is synonymous in Japan with two things: Shigaraki ware (信楽焼) and ceramic tanuki figurines.  The clay used to make Shigaraki ware comes from Lake Biwa, and at least one friend of mine has suggested that because of the overpopularity of tanuki figurines, authentic Shigaraki-style clay is starting to […]

The plum blossoms are at full strength, the white magnolia in my backyard is covered with so many blossoms that it looks like a performing waiter balancing a thousand ceramic cups on a thousand arms like some kind of woodland Shiva, and the songbirds have returned to scope out all the good early nesting opportunities.  […]

Two years ago I spent six months living on Swan’s Island, one of the most beautiful spots on the planet.  The house that I stayed in was relatively isolated and so I spent a good deal of time by myself, reading and writing, of course, but also spending time down at the two coves that […]

Somewhat ironically, the majority of the film I managed to salvage from my 2009 trip to South Korea wasn’t even shot in Korea.  Because I managed to leave my entire bag of exposed film behind on the ferry ride from Busan to Osaka, the only film that I was able to develop was the film […]

I spent several days in Seoul, but managed not to see any of the major sites — not the Namdaemun, not  the Gyeongbok-gung or Changdeok-gung palaces, not N Seoul Tower, and not even Lotte World.  So what did I do while I was there?  If I wasn’t busy getting my nose pulled off by Champ, […]

In a couple of days I’ll be off to Taiwan for a week, my first trip outside of the US and Japan since I visited South Korea in 2009.  Since I never really had a chance to post about my trip to Korea, now seems like the perfect time. To get to Korea, I took […]


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