General Life

Depths of summer

Summer is indeed quite upon us. Daytime temps soaring to 35 C, a symphony of cicadas greeting every open door, the bone-chilling freeze of over-airconditioned stores…. Nagoya was disgustingly hot and humid. It’s special that way. But I insisted on doing a tiny bit of playing tourist anyhow. Had wanted to visit Inuyama castle and…… Continue reading Depths of summer

japanese language

The joys of katakana

For those of you not familiar, katakana is the syllabary that Japanese uses for spelling out foreign loan words. And it is sometimes far more frustrating than trying to read kanji. Case in point, when I first saw the poster below, I was wondering who this Roscoe dude was (because the romanization of ラスコー is…… Continue reading The joys of katakana

Japan Travel · Rodeogirl

Where in Japan is Summerqueen?!

When last we left our intrepid Rodeo Girl, she was recuperating from sinusitis (Pro tip, children: if you’re taking prescription allergy meds, don’t decide to just stop cold turkey; that’s what I did and opened up my poor nose as a gateway to a previously unknown hell. Just don’t) and preparing to jet off to…… Continue reading Where in Japan is Summerqueen?!

Food · Fukuoka · Japan Travel · Rodeogirl

I’ve been remiss….

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….

Fukuoka · Japan Travel

Miyajidake Shrine

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

festivals · Fukuoka

Matsuri With the Kyushu

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