Archive for the ‘travel’ Category

the 11th year

31Mar16

March 29 marks the anniversary of my arrival in Japan, where I’ve now lived for a total of ten full years, almost a quarter of my life. I celebrated the beginning of my 11th year of living in Japan with a trip to Sennyū-ji temple (泉涌寺) in Kyoto with the poets Yoko Danno and Kiyoko […]


This last autumn — way back on October 17th — I trucked over to Sasayama to attend the annual Sasayama Autumn Festival (篠山秋祭 — sasayama aki matsuri), which is officially called the Kasuga-jinja Religious Festival (春日神社の祭礼 — kasuga-jinja no sairei) and presumably has its origins as a harvest festival. The matsuri coincides closely with the […]


loomings

03Jan16

This year, for the second year in a row, I went to Toyama prefecture with a group of friends to eat kan-buri (寒ブリ), Japanese amberjack, which is at its seasonal peak in winter. We stayed just outside of the town of Himi (氷見), which is famous not only for its large fish market and the […]


It’s been a long time since I’ve taken any photos with my Ricoh GRD2, but today I decided to take it with me on a trip to Rurikei Onsen, where my friends and I went to spend an afternoon soaking in the hot springs. Before hitting the baths, however, we decided to take a short […]


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

10Jun13

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.  […]