Sunday, February 28, 2010

二月二十八日(nigatsu nijyuhachi nichi): February 28

There was a warning of Tsunami (津波) this morning and evening, which was announced through the city. As long as I remember this was the first time to hear the alarm of the Tsunami. For the time being, it seems OK around here.

Today I had a special tea ceremony. It's been 30 years since my masters started teaching the tea ceremony, and they held the 30th year anniversary event. There came about 20 pupils from 10 years old to the 70s old. I started learning the tea ceremony about 20 years ago, those days I went to masters' house once a week on Thursday, but for more than 10 years I only join the special occasions such as hatsu gama (初釜), the first tea ceremony in the year.
Today I could meet old friends there, some of them brought their daughters too. How fast time flies!
In the morning, it was raining, and we could not go out, but later it became cloudy and fine. I took some pictures in front of their ume (梅) tree. Here is the one.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

二月二十七日(nigatsu nijyushichi nichi): February 27

I went to see a movie last Saturday and two movies today. They are American movies Invictus and It's Complicated, and a Japanese movie Golden Slumber.
The Japanese titles of them are inbikutasu/makezaru mono tachi (インビクタス/負けざる者たち) koisuru bekari (恋するベーカリー) and goruden suranba (ゴールデンスランバー).
Sometimes Japanese titles are quite different from the original titles.
In case of Invictus, since it is Latin, without any translation people cannot understand what it means, therefore the Japanese words meaning those who are unconquered was added after the pronunciation of Invictus.
In case of It's Complicated, it is totally different from the original title. Koisuru bekari (恋するベーカリー) literally means Loving Bakery. If you translate It's Complicated directly into Japanese, the title would not have been so attractive.
Golden Slumber is the song of the Beatles. But the story is quite different. It reminded me of The Fugitive a little bit.
I think all are worthwhile watching.

二月二十六日(nigatsu nijyuroku nichi) : February 26

Many Japanese must have watched the women's figure skating wishing the medals. All of Japanese representatives for both men and women were expected to get medals. Among them Mao Asada (浅田真央), 19 years old was thought to be the one closest to the gold medal.
After the short program the day before yesterday she was the second after landing the first triple axel ever performed in short programs at the Winter Games. So we expected there may be a chance of the gold medal.
However the South Korean Kim Yu-na, 19 years old marked the world record of 228.56 points just before Asada performed. She landed two triple axels but there were some mistakes, and her score ended up at 205.50, which was her best score, and got the silver medal. Since we knew she wanted to get a gold medal, we feel sorry for her. But still to have got a silver medal is great. Congratulations!! We expect her to win the gold medal at the next Olympic games.
The bronze medalist was Canadian Joannie Rochette at 202.64, the fourth was Mirai Nagasu(長洲未来), whose parents are Japanese, at 190.15, the fifth was Miki Ando (安藤美姫) at 188.86, and eighth was Akiko Suzuki (鈴木明子) at 181.44.
Thank you for your beautiful performances.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

二月二十五日(nigatsu nijyugo nichi) : February 25

It was very foggy this morning. I could not see even 5 to 10 meters away. But I could see the beautiful sun in the fog. Fog is kiri (霧) in Japanese, thick fog is nomu (濃霧).
At night when I watched TV news, I knew because of this thick fog more than 180 flights were canceled at the Haneda International Airport and that more than 31,000 people were affected. More than 400 flights were delayed more than 30 minutes and some flights were delayed more than 10 hours. Some ferries were also canceled.

It also blew haruichiban (春一番), literally spring No. 1. That is the first strong southern wind blown between Risshun (立春) on Feb. 4 and Shunbun (春分) on March 21. It was 12 days later than last year. The maximum instantaneous wind speed was 14.4 meters in Tokyo. The temperature went up to 18.3 degrees centigrade like April.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

二月二十四日(nigatsu nijyuyokka): February 24

It was rather warm today. During the daytime, we did not need to wear the overcoat.
Spring is nearing. The Kawazu zakura(河津桜), Kawazu cherry blossoms are full in bloom.
Near my house there are Kawazu zakuratrees all along the railroad. It is the season of Sakura matsuri(桜祭り), cherry blossom festival here.
Some trees are full in blooms and other trees are already changed to cherry trees in leaf called hazakura (葉桜). Flowers are bright pink, and leaves are light green. At the bottom there are yellow rape blossoms called na no hana(菜の花). The contrast of the colors is beautiful. People enjoy walking the road taking pictures. Here is the one for you.
As a winter flower tsubaki (椿), camellia is famous. The kanji character of tsubaki (椿) is composed of tree (木) and spring (春).
Now is the season for ume (梅), plum. There are many Ume matsuri(梅祭り), ume flower festivals here and there until the middle of March.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

二月二十三日(nigatsu nijyusan nichi) : February 23

Today is Crown Prince's 50th birthday. Happy Birthday!!

In Japan we have a special celebration at the age of 3, 5, 7, 20, 60, 70, 77, 80, 88, 90, 99, 100, 108, 110, 111, and 120. On November 15, girls of 3 years old and 7 years old, boys of 3 years of and 5 years old are celebrated. This is called shichi go san (7-5-3).
Being 20 means being an adult, and on the second Monday of January there is a celebration called seijin no hi (成人の日), Coming-of-Age Day. It is one of the national holidays.
Being 60 is called kanreki (還暦). The sexagenarian cycle is completed at the age of 60 and we return to the zodiac sign of the birth years. We wear a red vest on this day. Red is aka (赤) in Japanese. Aka-chan(赤ちゃん) is baby in Japanese. So we return to the baby at the age of 60.
70 years old is called koki (古希), 77 year old is kiju (喜寿), 80 years old is sanju (傘寿), 88 years old is beiju (米寿), 90 years old is sotsuju (卒寿), 99 years old is hakuju (白寿). 100 years old is hyakuju (百寿), 108 years old is chaju (茶寿), 110 years old is chinju (珍寿), 111 years old is koju (皇寿), and 120 years old is daikanreki (大還暦).

二月二十二日(nigatsu nijyuni nichi): February 22

It was a very rare day today. If you write today's date in Japanese, it is 平成22年2月22日(heisei nijyuni nen nigatsu nijyuni nichi). There are five 2. It's so rare that many train companies issued special entrance tickets stamped 22222. Enoden(江ノ電) in Kanagawa (神奈川) started selling the set memorial entrance tickets from Feb. 11, they sold 1,000 sets before Feb. 22. Set tickets of the Keihin kyuko (京浜急行) line were sold out in a few hours this morning. So were other train companies.
The last time it happened like this was January 1 and November 11, 1999 that is 11 years ago. They were 平成11年1月1日(heisei jyuichi nen ichigatsu tsuitachi) or 平成11年11月11日 (heisei jyuichi nen jyuichi gatsu jyuichi nichi).
And the next time will be March 3, 2021. That will be 平成33年3月3日(heisei sanjyusan nen san gatsu mikka).

Sunday, February 21, 2010

二月二十一日(nigatsu nijyuichi nichi): February 21

Good news! A Japanese actress, Terajima Shinobu(寺島しのぶ), 37 years old won the Silver Bear for the Best Actress for Caterpillar at the 60th Berlin Film Festival.
This is the 5th international actor/actress award for Japanese. She is the third Japanese actress that received the Silver Bear Award after Hidari Sachiko (左幸子) in 1964 and Tanaka Kinuyo (田中絹代) in 1975. It's been 35 years.
Her father is the 7th Onoe Kikugoro(七代目尾上菊五郎:shichidaime onoe kikugoro), kabuki actor. His mother is Fuji Sumiko (富司純子), actress. Her brother is the 5th Onoe Kikunosuke(五代目尾上菊之助: godaime onoe kikunosuke). That is she was born and raised in the performing art family.
She got married a French art director on February 26, 2007.
The movie Caterpillar was directed by Wakamatsu Koji(若松孝二), 73 years old. Her parts were shot only in 12 days. The movie depicted the struggle of a married couple whose husband came back from the World War II having lost arms, legs, hearing and voice. It will be released on August 15, 2010 in Japan.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

二月二十日(nigatsu hatsuka): February 20

I have just watched the TV drama "Saga no gabai ba-chan 2 (佐賀のがばいばあちゃん2)." Saga is the name of the prefecture in Kyushu (九州), the southern island. Gabai is the dialect of Saga meaning very but in this case great. Ba-chan is grandmother.
The original book was written by Shimada Yoshichi(島田洋七), a famous comedian and published in 1993. By April 2007, 4 million copies were sold and the story became a movie and TV dramas. I watched the movie on TV last year.
It is his autobiography. When he was a boy, his mother in Hiroshima (広島) sent him to Saga where his grandmother was to live with her. She was rather poor economically but very rich in heart. The drama depicted 3 episodes while he lived with her.
Her words are pregnant. Among them I like the following sayings.
The treasure that cannot be bought by money is the most important.
Have a dream. Have a dream until it will be accomplished. If not, no problem, it is after all just a dream.
Hardship is a warm-up to be happy.

Friday, February 19, 2010

二月十九日 (nigatsu jyuku nichi) : February 19

Today is usui (雨水), one of nijyushisekki (二十四節季), the 24 solar terms. Usui (雨水) literally means rain water. It is a time snow and ice melt and change to rain. It was very cold. When I got up, the field was white with frost. The windshield was frozen again.

Today's big news was the bronze medal of men's figure skating. The hope of Japanese men's skating, Daisuke Takahashi (高橋大輔), 23 years old got the silver medal. Congratulations!!
He had a surgery on the right knee in November 2008 and recovered. The key of the medal was said to depend on the success of quadruple jump. And he tried. This became the first medal of men's figure skating in the Olympics.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

二月十八日(nigatsu jyuhachi nichi): February 18

Another cold day. When I got up this morning, it was snowing. It is very rare to snow around this area. But it even slightly piled. By the time I got to the office in Tokyo, it stopped snowing. When I came back in the night, the windshield of the car was freezing.

They say February 18 is Day of Airmail. In 1911 the first airmail was delivered. These days emails are very popular and the chance of letter-writing is reducing. However I like to write cards and letters and receive cards and letters, especially airmails. Whenever I travel abroad, I try to send postcards to my family and friends as much as possible using beautiful postcards and stamps.
When I sent Christmas cards last year, even in the same city in Florida someone got it within one week, and the other got it more than 1 month later. Strange, isn't it? I don't know why.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

二月十七日(nigatsu jyushichi nichi): February 17

It was very cold again. They say today is yuki no tokui bi (雪の特異日), the particular day of the high possibility of snowing in Tokyo. During the 7 years between 1981 and 1987 it snowed at the rate of 70% on this particular day. It maybe snow tonight too.
On February 17, 1978 in Hokkaido the coldest temperature was recorded. It was -41.2 degrees centigrade. I can't imagine how cold it was.
But I often think the human body is great because I have experienced from around -36 degrees centigrade in Alaska to around 49 degrees centigrade in Spain as long as I remember.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

二月十六日(nigatsu jyuroku nichi): February 16

Good news! Japan got the silver and bronze medals for men's 500m speed skating. The Silver medalist is Keiichiro Nagashima(長島圭一郎) 27 years old (1'9"98) and the bronze medalist is Joji Kato(加藤条治) 25 years old (1'10"01).
Both of them suffered humiliation in the last Olympic games in Torino and the experience made them stronger. And this time both of them got the medals. Congratulations!!
They belong to the same company Nihon Densan Sankyo(日本電産サンキョー) which produces the skating shoes. They wished to get the gold medals. The difference between No. 1 and No. 2 was just 0.16 seconds. But the man created the shoes said he was happy that both of them got the silver and the bronze medals rather than only either of them got the gold medal.

Monday, February 15, 2010

二月十五日(nigatsu jyugo nichi): February 15

I read an interesting article in the newspaper today. There was the ranking of the vegetables which children like and dislike.
Top 10 of the favorite vegetables are No. 1 sweet potato, No. 2 edamame (枝豆:green soybeans), No. 3 potato, No. 4 corn, No. 5 tomato, No. 6 carrot, No. 7 cucumber, No. 8 broccoli, No. 9 pumpkin, No. 10 daikon (大根:Japanese radish).
Worst 10 of the dislikes vegetables are No. 1 piman (ピーマン: sweet green pepper), No. 2 mizuna (水菜: Potherb Mustard), No. 3 eggplant, No. 4 okra, No. 5 negi (ネギ:scallion), No. 6 nira (ニラ: chinese chive), No. 7 asparagus, No. 8 shiitake (シイタケ:shiitake mushroom), No. 9 gobo (ゴボウ: burdock), No. 10 takenoko (タケノコ:bamboo shoot).
Most of the favorite vegetables are found in other countries too. When I was in the United States, I was so surprised to know edamame is now so popular in the US too. They are often eaten with beer.
Cucumber in Japan is different from that of the US. They are slender. Japanese pumpkin is also a little bit different from the one I can find in the US. I could even find daikon in Florida.
When I was in WA in 1996, I was so surprised to know that American people eat raw broccoli, raw cauliflower, and raw mushroom. In Japan we usually boil or stir-fry them.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

二月十四日(nigatsu jyuyokka): February 14

Happy Valentine's Day!

How do you spend St. Valentine's Day in your country?
In Japan this is the day when girls and women give chocolates to boys and men whom they like. If he is the true love, the chocolate is called honmei (本命), literally true life. If he is just a friend or a boss, the given chocolate is called giri choko(義理チョコ), meaning obligation chocolates. Since today is Sunday, a fewer giri choko are given, I guess.

They say today is the New Year in the Chinese Calendar. A Happy New Year!!

Saturday, February 13, 2010

二月十三日(nigatsu jyusan nichi): February 13

The 21st 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympic Games have just started. This is the biggest winter olympic games ever happened having about 2,400 representatives of 82 countries and regions. There will be 86 events of 7 games for 17 days until Feb. 28 which is March 1 in Japan.
There are 94 Japanese athletes which is 18 less than the last Torino Olympics in 2006. The youngest is 15 years old and the oldest is 45 years old. The flag bearer is Ms. Tomomi Okazaki (岡崎朋美), 38 years old speed skater who has attended the 4 winter olympics before and this is the fifth olympics for her. I hope she will get the medal.
I watched the opening ceremony which broadcasted from 11 am and rebroadcasted from 7:30 pm on TV. It was the first ceremony that was held indoors. The snowboarder was very impressive.
But I still think the best lighting scene of the Olympic Frame was the Barcelona 1992 which led me to go to see the Olympic games after that. Since then I have been to the Barcelona '92, Atlanta '96, Nagano '98, Sydney 2000, Salt Lake 2002, and Athene 2004.

Friday, February 12, 2010

二月十二日(nigatsu jyuni nichi): February 12

It was very cold today. In the morning it was even sleeting. When it snows or sleets, I feel the coldness especially on my feet. Those who have poor blood circulation are called hie sho (冷え性). Their feet and hands are very cold.
Therefore I like to take a bath just before going to bed. Japanese people's way of taking a bath is different from the westerners. We soak into the hot water (around 42 degrees centigrade) to get warm and relax after washing our body outside the bathtub.
There are many hot springs in Japan. As I get older, I like to soak in hot springs.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

二月十一日(nigatsu jyuichi nichi): February 11

Today is a national holiday called kenkoku kinen no hi (建国記念の日), National Foundation Day. This holiday was established in 1966. Between 1873 and 1948 it was called kigen setsu (紀元節), which was one of four holidays at that time.

It was cloudy here. I just stayed home and watched the movies I recorded before.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

二月十日(nigatsu toka): February 10

Tonight I happened to watch two music TV programs. One of them was the talk program between songwriters at the auditorium. The audience was college students. This program reminded me of "Inside The Actor's Studio" which I like very much.
I knew both songwriters' names, but I am not so familiar with their songs. However it was very interesting to know how they composed the poetry.
There was a workshop of making a poem by seeing a picture in a short period. Seeing the same picture of the scramble crossing at Shibuya (渋谷) in Tokyo (東京), many students and the songwriters made so many different poems. But two of them had almost the same kind of nuance. The one was songwriter's and the other was his fan's.

Everyone is different. But still we have something in common. And we are attracted by each other. Sometimes we are attracted by the same kinds, and other times we are attracted by the opposites.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

二月九日(nigatsu kokonoka): February 9

It was rather warm today. In the daytime it went up to around 18 degrees centigrade like spring in Tokyo. During daytime I was inside, therefore I did not notice how warm it was. But even at night it is still warm around 16 degrees centigrade (68F?), and this is the first night in this winter that I do not have to use the heater.

Outside some winter flowers are blooming. Usually cherry blossoms are full in bloom in the late March to early April, but around this area Kawazu-zakura (河津桜), Kawazu cherry blossom is in bloom. The original tree was found in Kawazu, Shizuoka (静岡県賀茂郡河津町:shizuoka ken kamo gun kawazu cho) in 1955. They have Kawazu-zakura festival around February 10 to March 10. There are Kawazu-zakura about 3km along the bank of the Kawazu river. The color is bright pink and the flower season is about a month.

Monday, February 8, 2010

二月八日(nigatsu yoka): February 8

February 8 is known as hari kuyo (針供養). Hari (針) is needle, kuyo (供養) means to have a memorial service. This is the day to have a memorial service for broken needles to thank their works of the past year and to wish the improvement of sewing skill and the safety. This is the festival of women which started in the Edo era (江戸時代 edo jidai :1603-1867). Women put the broken needles into tofu (豆腐) or konnyaku (蒟蒻), devil's tongue and let them flow into the rivers or bring to the temples.

Speaking of a needle, there is a four word phrase. It is shin sho bo dai (針小棒大), literally means small like a needle big like a stick. That is to make a mountain out of a molehill.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

二月七日(nigatsu nanoka): February 7

It was very cold but fine today. I could see the very beautiful Mt. Fuji from my house. I do not like cold but I like to see the beautiful Mt. Fuji in winter. At night the stars are so beautiful.
In the northern part of Japan, it snowed so much and there were many accidents. There were snowslides too. I hear in Washington DC it snowed a lot and the White House became the real white house.
However it seems in Vancouver there is not enough snow so that they brought snow from 200 km away. The winter Olympic is only 6 days away. I have been to 2 winter olympics in Nagano in 1998 and Salt Lake City in 2002. I wished to go to Vancouver too, but could not. I am looking forward to watching some games on TV.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

二月六日(nigatsu muika) : February 6

I went to hospital. I have had a back pain since April. I went to see a doctor in June for the first time regarding this pain and took X-ray and MRI but he could not find the reason. I changed the hospital near the office. They could not find the reason but just gave me some painkillers. Once in two months I visited there but nothing has changed. Yesterday I took X-ray of the neck and CT of the body. It seems the problem of the neck causes the pain on the back. Doctor gave me painkillers.
At night I happened to talk with my best Spanish friend via Skype. He mentioned about the book "La Medicina del Alma(The Soul Medicine)" written by Eric Rolf. According to the book, it seems the pain has the message. Depends on the place of the pain, there are some messages. I would like to read it someday.

Here are some words lesson.
Hospital is byoin (病院). Doctor is isha (医者). Orthopedics is seikei geka(整形外科). Medicine is kusuri (薬). Painkiller is chintsu zai(鎮痛剤). Pain is itami (痛み).

Friday, February 5, 2010

二月五日(nigatsu itsuka): February 5

The 61st Sapporo Snow Festival (第六十一回札幌雪祭り:dai rokujyuikkai sapporo yuki matsuri) started today. There are three sites (大通り会場:Odori kaijo, すすきの会場:Susukino kaijo, つどーむ会場:Tsudome kaijo), and there are 249 statues of snow and ice there.
This festival will last until February 11. And about 2 million poeple around the world are expected to visit the festival. Please check the following site for details.

There are many delicious foods in Hokkaido(北海道), where is the northern island of Japan and Sapporo (札幌) is in Hokkaido. Therefore there are many food stands near the festival sites to offer the local foods.
Some of the specialty in Hokkaido are sea food such as kegani (毛がに,hairy crab), hotate (ホタテ,scallop), shake (鮭,salmon), kombu (昆布,kelp) and agricultural products such as potate, sweet corn and foods such as sushi(寿司), ramen (ラーメン), Ishikari nabe (石狩鍋), jingisukan (ジンギスカン) and so on.
Please come to Hokkaido and enjoy delicious foods.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

二月四日(nigatsu yokka): February 4

Today was risshun (立春), one of nijyushisekki (二十四節気) the 24 solar terms. The last one was daikan (大寒) on January 20, and the next one is usui (雨水) on February 19.
Risshun literally means stand spring. It is the first day of spring by the old calendar. On the calender it is spring, but it was very cold today, so will be tomorrow.

Today's big news was the announcement of the retirement of the Yokozuna Asashoryu(横綱朝青龍). He was the champion of the last January grand sumo tournament. However during the tournament one night he got drunk and had a violence. This scandal caused him to retire.
He was the 68th Yokozuna, grand champion sumo wrestler. He has become a champion for 25th tournaments. It is the 3rd record in history. He has compiled a 669-173 record since January 2001.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

二月三日(nigatsu mikka): February 3

Today was setsubun (節分), literally means to divide the season. In Japan we have distinct four seasons (四季:shiki), therefore there are four setsubun. However we usually mention only the day before the beginning of spring, risshun (立春).
On setsubun we had a custom to scatter parched beans to drive out bad luck saying "Oni wa soto, fuku wa uchi (鬼は外、福は内)" meaning " Devils out, fortunes in." This is called mame maki(豆まき), mame means beans and maki means to scatter. And after that we collect up and eat the amount of beans that corresponds to our age, wishing for the good health. This is held at home, kindergartens, temples, and so on. When it is held at the temples, usually toshi otoko(年男) or toshi onna(年女) (who were born in the year of Tiger in this year's case) scatter the beans. Toshi means year, otoko means man and onna means woman. This year is year of Tiger (寅年:tora doshi).
At the observatory (150 m) of the Tokyo Tower (東京タワー) which is 333 meters high there was the 50th events. About 200 kindergartners and families enjoyed.
There is another custom called eho maki (恵方巻き), eho means good luck direction, and maki means roll. This is to eat big rolls with many ingredients facing at the good luck direction of the year without saying anything.
This year's good luck direction is west-southwest (西南西:sei nan sei), which falls on the way to Mt. Fuji from the Tokyo Tower. Unfortunately it was cloudy and snow again today, therefore they could not see the Mt. Fuji.
I ate ehomaki at lunch time, and did mame maki at home.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

二月二日(nigatsu futsuka): February 2

It is often said that Japanese language is very difficult. I feel so too. Main reasons are writing systems and honorific words. There are three different writing styles. One is kanji (漢字), pictographic characters imported from China, the other is hiragana (ひらがな), another is katakana (カタカナ). Each kanji character has meaning. Hiragana and katakana are phonetic signs. There are 46 hiragana and 46 katakana. To read a newspaper you have to know about 2000 kanji characters.
The difficult things of kanji are sound. One kanji often has some different pronunciations.
For example, let's check the dates.
January 1 is written as 一月一日 and pronunced as ichi gatsu tsuitachi. 月(gatsu) means month, and 日(nichi) means day. Same character 一is read different way, ichi and tsui.
February 2 is written as 二月二日 and pronunced as ni gatsu futsu ka. Same character 二 is read different way as ni and futsu.
March 3 is written as 三月三日 and pronunced as san gatsu mi kka. 三 is read as san and mi.
April 4 is written as 四月四日 and pronunced as shi gatsu yo kka. 四 is read as shi and yo.
May 5 is written as 五月五日 and pronunced as go gatsu itsu ka. 五 is read as go and itsu.
June 6 is written as 六月六日 and pronunced as roku gatsu mui ka. 六 is read as roku and mui.
July 7 is written as 七月七日 and pronunced as shichi gatsu nano ka. 七 is read as shichi and nano.
August 8 is written as 八月八日 and pronunced as hachi gatsu yo ka. 八 is read as hachi and yo.
September 9 is written as 九月九日 and pronunced as ku gatsu kokono ka. 九 is read as ku and kokono.
October 10 is written as 十月十日 and pronunced as jyu gatsu to ka. 十 is read as jyu and to.

Don't you think it is interesting?

Monday, February 1, 2010

二月一日(nigatsu tsuitachi): February 1

Another month has started. February is nigatsu(二月) in Japanese. The old name is kisaragi (如月).
It was very cold today. It snowed in Tokyo in the evening. Even here it snowed.  Snow is yuki (雪) in Japanese. Snow of the big snowflakes is called botan yuki (牡丹雪). Botan(牡丹) is peony. Powder snow is kona yuki (粉雪). Snowman is yuki daruma (雪だるま). Snowball fight is yuki gassen(雪合戦). Snowy country is yuki guni (雪国). Snowscape is yuki geshiki(雪景色).

The first day of each month is called tsuitachi (一日). The same kanji (一日) is also read as ichi nichi.