Sake: Japan’s Liquid of Choice

Sake is such an integral part of Japanese culture. There are so many different types of sake, different brands, different ways to drink it, different occasions to drink it on. Having gone out with my Japanese colleagues (surprise, surprise, teachers love to drink!) on many occasions, I feel like I’ve learnt a little about this complex alcoholic liquid. Continue reading “Sake: Japan’s Liquid of Choice”

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Tea Time at the Peter Rabbit Garden Cafe

Once upon a time, there were four little rabbits, and their names were

Flopsy, Mopsy, Cotton-tail and Peter.

They lived with their Mother in a sand-bank, underneath the root of a very big fir-tree.

And so begins the tale of cheeky, little Peter Rabbit.  Continue reading “Tea Time at the Peter Rabbit Garden Cafe”

Southern Kyushu: Shrines, Volcanoes and Unusual Sea Views

The Golden Week holiday in Japan is the perfect time to get out of the city and explore the country. A few years ago, I spent early May on a road trip around Kyushu, Japan’s southern main island. I was lucky to have the trip planned for me, but that also meant I had no idea what sights we were going to see. I’m usually the one planning, so it was nice to just sit back in the passenger seat and enjoy the ride… I was in for a lot of unexpected sights. Continue reading “Southern Kyushu: Shrines, Volcanoes and Unusual Sea Views”

Making Deco Sushi for the First Time

It’s that time of the year again — the Golden Week holiday! This year, we have Showa Day on Sunday and its replacement holiday on Monday. Tuesday and Wednesday are regular work days but people will take them off if they can. Then Constitution Day is on Thursday, Greenery Day on Friday and Children’s Day on Saturday. For Japanese people, this “golden” week of public holidays is like a reward for all of the hard work and overtime they regularly do. Continue reading “Making Deco Sushi for the First Time”

Spring Hiking at South Takao

Happy Earth Day! On Sunday, the hiking/charity group I’ve joined for the past five years, went on a 15km hike along the South Takao Ridge. It’s been a while since I did a solid hike, and what better time to get back into it than a day dedicated to spreading awareness of the need to protect and preserve the world we live in. Continue reading “Spring Hiking at South Takao”