Move over Nanzoin temple, I have a new local favourite place: Miyajidake shrine in Fukutsu. I had been meaning to visit Miyajidake for months, since it’s just a short train ride out of town, but never quite seemed to make it. The shrine itself is dedicated to Empress Jingu, an intriguing quasi-historical figure dating from…… Continue reading Miyajidake Shrine
Last summer when I visited Sapporo for a pair of Granrodeo concerts, it was smack in the middle of three typhoons. One had just moved on, one was in residence, and a third was almost there. When it wasn’t pouring cats and dogs, I found Sapporo to be very charming, and because I didn’t get…… Continue reading Sapporo Weekend
In December 2016, 33 different Japanese matsuri (festivals) were elevated to UNESCO Cultural Intangible Property status. And two weeks ago, five selected Kyushu matsuri celebrated in downtown Fukuoka with a trimmed down, but still impressive, display of the mikoshi (floats) that feature so prominently in the festivals. The matsuri represented included: Hakata Gion Yamakasa Gyoji,…… Continue reading Matsuri With the Kyushu
Spring in Japan is a succession of flower explosions, starting early with the plum blossoms. Sakura, azalea and wisteria follow in quick succession from March-April. I’ve managed some prime plum, sakura and azalea viewing before, but until last week, had not managed to catch the wisteria in bloom, other than a few small trellises locally.…… Continue reading Kameido Shrine wisteria
Been meaning to write this up for a while, and if I don’t now, Rodeo season will devour me before I get to it…. After the trip out of town, we needed a day of rest, so we slept in, and only visited Hakozaki Shrine and Hakata station (including the tiny shrine at the very…… Continue reading Family trip, last bits
When last we left our intrepid travelers, they had just wrapped up a day and a half in Kyoto. On the 19th, we headed west again, stopping in Hiroshima. After a quick detour to the hotel to drop off bags, it was off to Itsukushima island aka Miyajima. My mom had fallen in love with…… Continue reading Family trip: Miyajima and Hiroshima
A few minutes ago marks 3 lovely years since I arrived. And on Thursday begins the process for another 5. I shall hopefully celebrate with a free massage and maybe a glass of sake after work.