My friend Megan visited for three days last week, my first time seeing her since I moved to Japan, and her first trip here in 14 years (first time to Kyushu, to boot). Our original clever plan had been to meet up with a friend and rent a place with a private bath in Yufuin,…… Continue reading Playing tour guide
These are ducks of some sort (I assume). Ducks are good birds. Well, generally speaking. They are not #%@# conniving, thieving raptors who will steal an innocent woman’s hard-earned sandwich after she’s had maybe half of it. I was robbed with such precision that there was just a smooth whomp of impact and I was…… Continue reading Fowl play
October in Fukuoka means Oktober Fest and the annual toumyou (lantern) festival. This year I combined both events with an afternoon Hawks baseball game for a busy, entertaining day. The Hawks game was my first time attending the Climax Series, which, at best, sounds like it should be the equivalent of the World Series, but…… Continue reading Fall Fun
Another whirlwind month gone by. Another insanely busy set of weekends. September has been quite a full month, even with two and a half weekends at home. I started the month by managing to embarrass myself face-to-face with Granrodeo (my Japanese deserted me post-haste when the lead singer took my hands; the guitarist teased me…… Continue reading Sneaky September
Well, more accurately, I’ve been swamped with work, running around Japan on weekends and been down with something not quite a cold, but just as evil. So no energy for writing. Finally on the mend (no more harboring Asomodeus and Beelzebub in my sinuses), but still on the run … and swamped with work. June…… Continue reading I’ve been remiss….
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
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