Wednesday, August 31, 2011

8月31日(hachigatsu sanjyuichi nichi): August 31

I went to massage today. It's been nearly 2 months since I went there last time. I thought I was more healthier and less tired than last time but the massager said I was more tired and the level of stiff shoulders was worse today. She said the reasons must be from the stress which I am sure that I have had since last time and that I slept only for 3 hours today.
She said the unhealthiness is caused by three reasons. One is from mental reason such as stress, second is physical reason, and third is from unknown reason such as evil spirit.
In my case it was from the stress and physical fatigue.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

8月30日(hachigatsu sanjyu nichi): August 30

Today I went to Asakusa (浅草). When I went there last time was in April but the landscape was different since then. The Sensoji (浅草寺) temple has been under renovation, but today the cover was gone and I could see the beautiful temple.
I could also see the Tokyo Sky Tree, which has been also under construction.

Monday, August 29, 2011

8月29日(hachigatsu nijyuku nichi): August 29

The new leader of the Democratic Party of Japan was elected today. He is Finance Minister Yoshihiko Noda (野田佳彦), 54 years old. There were 5 candidates. At the first vote nobody got the majority and at the second vote he was chosen. This is the third leader since the DPJ took the power in 2009.

Mr. Koji Murofushi (室伏広治), 36 years old became a champion for the shot put at 81.24 meters for his season best at the IAAF World Championships in Athletics in Daegu, Korea.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

8月28日(hachigatsu nijyuhachi nichi): August 28

I had a luncheon at a Chinese restaurant in Yokohama (横浜). Yokohama is famous for the China Town. The other day I ate at the restaurant in the China Town, but this time it was not in the China Town.
There were about 8 dishes or so today. I enjoyed eating and talking.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

8月27日(hachigatsu nijyushichi nichi): August 27

I went to the seminar of the publishing company in Yokohama (横浜). There were two parts, first was the talk by CEO and the latter was how to write the book.
They say there are 3 condition of the good book, one is if you can summarize the contents in a few words, second is originality, and the third is universality.
I hope to write about my Florida experiences.

Friday, August 26, 2011

8月26日(hachigatsu nijyuroku nichi): August 26

It was fine and hot in the daytime but heavily rained in the evening.

I went to visit an oil factory in Yokohama (横浜). It was very interesting to see the bottling, labeling and packaging. Factory visit is usually free and they give us souvenirs. If it is food or drink factory, you can taste. You can learn many things too. I recommend you to visit these places if you have a chance.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

8月25日(hachigatsu nijyugo nichi): August 25

I went to the National Diet building. There is a tour of the building. The guide told us about the best position to take pictures of the building. From where you could take a picture of the building and the fountain. If you move a little bit, the building will appear with tall buildings.
I remember the idiom, mochi ha mochi ya (餅は餅屋), meaning leave the rice cake baker to rice cake making. That is the professional knows the best.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

8月24日(hachigatsu nijyuyokka): August 24

I am now staying at a hotel in Tokyo. I was surprised when I came here this evening because there was a queue for checking in. It's been a long time since I waited for the check in at the hotel.
I am afraid of the crowded restaurants tomorrow morning....

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

8月23日(hachigatsu nijyusan nichi): August 23

Today is shosho (処暑), one of nijyushisekki(二十四節季), the 24 solar terms. The last one was risshu (立秋) on August 8 and the next one is hakuro (白露) on September 8. It is the time when the heat is going to leave.

I went to the Ministry of the Environment today. I was surprised to see the room. It was dark because the lights were off to save energy.
I remember the four word idiom sossen suihan (率先垂範), which means example by leadership.

Monday, August 22, 2011

8月22日(hachigatsu nijyuni nichi): August 22

It rained again, but it stopped in the afternoon.
There were earthquakes again. We are not sure how long more we will have aftershock.

They say yesterday was the peak of the return of the people who went abroad for the summer vacation. About 44,500 people came back to the Narita (成田) Airport which is about 2,500 people less than last year because of the Great Earthquake. Nowadays yen is strong and it seems they enjoyed shopping a lot.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

8月21日(hachigatsu nijyuichi nichi): August 21

It rained and was rather cool today. Until two days ago it has been unbelievably hot. We still have earthquakes these days.

I went grocery shopping. Supermarket is the place where we can feel the season. Today I found some autumn foods there. They are grapes and ingredients for cooking rice such as chestnut (栗:kuri) and matsutake (松茸) mushroom. They are called kuri gohan (栗ごはん) and matsutake gohan (松茸ごはん) when cooked. Gohan (ご飯) means rice. Autumn is a season of good appetite.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

8月20日(hachigatsu hatsuka): August 20

There was the final match of the high school baseball games. Nichidai sanko (日大三校)from west Tokyo area became a champion at the 93rd summer tournament. It's been 10 years since they became a champion last time in 2001. They are the top of 4014 teams all over Japan. They had a match with Koseigakuin (光星学院) from Aomori (青森) and won by 11 to 0. Congratulations!
There were about 47,000 spectators at the Koshien (甲子園) stadium today.

Today I was glad to find a newspaper article of the person whom I met in Expo '92.

Friday, August 19, 2011

8月19日(hachigatsu jyuku nichi): August 19

It was fine and hot in the morning, but rained a lot later. I did not go out during daytime so I am not sure how much it rained but my colleague said it rained heavily at lunch time. When I came home at night, it seemed it rained with strong wind because there were many leaves on the pools in the roads.
In the afternoon we had rather big and long earthquakes.
TGIF! Have a nice weekend!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

8月18日(hachigatsu jyuhachi nichi): August 18

It was very hot today too.
I went out for lunch with colleagues at the Chinese Restaurant. Chinese foods are very popular.
The good thing to eat Chinese foods with others is we can taste many different dishes for a reasonable price. We could eat 4 different dishes with rice, soup, and pickles.
Chinese food in Japanese is chuka ryori (中華料理).
In Japan there are very famous China town in Yokohama (横浜) and Kobe (神戸). The China town in Japanese is chuka gai (中華街).
I will eat Chinese at the China town next week.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

8月17日(hachigatsu jyushichi nichi): August 17

The other day I went to see a movie "The Tree of Life." Brad Pitt is my favorite movie star so that whenever there is a movie of him I try to see it. I was very looking forward to seeing it because it got the Palme d'Or at the Cannes Film Festival.
However unfortunately I did not understand the movie well.
Have you seen the movie yet? Please let me hear your comment.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

8月16日(hachigatsu jyuroku nichi): August 16

Do you know taiyaki (鯛焼き)? It is a popular snack. The shape is a beam. Beam is tai (鯛) in Japanese. Yaki (焼き) means grilled or baked. It is a baked sweet like waffle. Usually there is sweet bean paste inside. Sometimes there are cream or other stuff.
Today I found a quite different one. It contains potato with spicy cod eggs.
Usually taiyaki is a snack, but with this ingredient it was like a side dish.
Would you like to try?

Monday, August 15, 2011

8月15日(hachigtsu jyugo nihci): August 15

It was another hot day. It seems this will continue till Thursday.

Today is the Anniversary of the End of the War (終戦記念日:shusen kinenbi). It's been 66 years since the World War II was over.
Every year there is a memorial service at the Nihon Budokan (日本武道館). This year about 7,200 people attended to pray for the souls of about 3,100,000 war dead. The oldest attendance was 97 years old wife who lost her husband at the age of 38. The youngest attendance was 5 years old great-grandson whose great-grandfather passed away at the age of 28 years old.
The number of survivors who attended the service was about 4,900 people. Among them wives are only 0.9 %, brothers and sisters are 13.5%, children are 64.9%, and grandchildren are 2.8%. Those who are born after the war occupies 9.2%.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

8月14日(hachigatsu jyuykka): August 14

It was another hot day. It was windy too. They say the hottest temperature was 38.1 degrees centigrade today.

When I was watching the TV program regarding the World War II in the afternoon, I happened see Ms. Beate Sirota Gordon was interviewed. I was surprised but very happy to see her fine because I have personally known her.
In the night there was a TV program regarding the earth, Photo journalist Mr. Koichi Fujiwara (藤原幸一) was in it. I was glad to see his worldwide activity because I have also known him since the 44th peace boat cruise in 2003 to 2004.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

8月13日(hachigatsu jyusan nichi): August 13

It is Obon (お盆) now. Obon is the time when the spirits of the ancestors come back home. At this time many people go back to their home town to visit the graves of ancestors. Father and I went to the graveyard of my mother.
In the afternoon I had a luxurious lunch with friends from high school tennis club. It's been 5 years since we got together last time. Then we went to the very nice restaurant to have tea and cake for my friend's birthday.
After that my friend and I decided to attend the general OB meeting of our high school tennis club. It's been 20 years since I attended there last. At that time we had played tennis together once a month or more, but I have not played tennis these days.
After the meeting three of us went to have something to eat. It is nice to have someone who had the same experience because they are the only people we can share the same memory.

Friday, August 12, 2011

8月12日(hachigatsu jyuni nichi): August 12

It was another hot day.
I went out for Chinese lunch with colleagues.
After work I had a small reunion of my high school classmates. Four of us got together in April too when one of them came back from London for a short visit. And we met the other after a long time, maybe more than 10 years.
We have spent 3 years together, and had quite different lives since we graduated from high school. Three of us became teachers but quitted. One became a doctor, and another works for the oil company.
Three of us had lived in the USA, and I visited both of them in North Carolina in 1996 and Texas in 2007 while I was in the Washington and Florida.
Three got married and have two to three children. Two are still single.
We enjoyed eating and talking.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

8月11日(hachigatsu jyuichi nichi): August 11

It's been 5 months since the Great Earthquake happened. As of July 28 the death toll climbed to 15,689 in 12 prefectures, the missing number is 4,744 in 6 prefectures, and refugees and those who had to move were 87,063. About 11,000,000 self-defense forces members and policemen were dispatched to the devastated area. Volunteer of 3 prefectures were totaled to about 660,000 as of August 8.
There are still many places and people to be helped.

Today it was another hot day, maybe the hottest day in this summer.

8月10日(hachigatsu toka): August 10

It has been very hot these days.
151 points among 920 places in Japan it recorded the moshobi (猛暑日), that means the temperature went up to more than 35 degrees centigrade. They say the usage of electricity reached 49,030,000 kw which is the biggest in this summer because of using air-conditioning.
The highest temperature was 38.7 degrees centigrade at 15:41 in Tatebayashi(館林) , Gunma (群馬).

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

8月9日(hachigatsu kokonoka): August 9

August 9 is day of Atomic Bomb dropped in Nagasaki (長崎). It was 66 years since it happened. There was a memorial service, and about 6,000 people from 44 countries attended. 3,288 people passed away within a year until July, and the name list of 155,546 people who are victims of the atomic bomb dropped in Nagasaki was dedicated.
In the night of August 6 I watched the TV program titled "Letters from hibakusha (ヒバクシャ)." Hibakusha is atomic bomb victims. What happened on August 6 and 9 in 1945 were really horrible.
This March we had nuclear plants tragedy in Fukushima (福島).
We should really think about the renewable energy.

Monday, August 8, 2011

8月8日(hachigatsu yoka): August 8

Today is risshu (立秋), one of nijyushisekki (二十四節季) the 24 solar terms. The last one was taisho (大暑) on July 23 and the next one is shosho (処暑) on August 23.
Risshu (立秋) literally means stand fall, that is the beginning of fall. However it was very hot and humid today.
The temperature of the office is kept at 28 degrees centigrade this year because of saving energy. And it is very hot outside too.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

8月7日(hachigatsu nanoka): August 7

It was hot.
In every prefecture it became manatsubi (真夏日), which temperature went up to more than 30 degrees centigrade. In many places it became moshobi (猛暑日), which temperature went up to more than 35 degrees centigrade.
Depends on the places there was thunder rain. But not here.
They say it is going to be hot tomorrow too.
Until today we greet shochu omimai moushi agemasu. (暑中お見舞い申し上げます。)
From tomorrow we say zansho omimai moushi agemasu. (残暑お見舞い申し上げます。)

Saturday, August 6, 2011

8月6日(hachigatsu muika): August 6

There are some days in a year that every Japanese people cannot forget. Today, August 6 is one of them. 66 years ago the Atomic bomb was dropped in Hiroshima (広島). There was a memorial service in the morning at the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park and the name list that 5,785 people that passed away within last year added was dedicated. The total casualty became 275,230 people.
It's been 66 years but there are still many people suffering. We are worried about the Fukushima (福島) case too.

There was another big news. It was the opening of the 93rd high school baseball tournament so-called Koshien (甲子園). Seiko gakuin(聖光学院) from Fukushima (福島) won at the 10th inning.

Friday, August 5, 2011

8月5日(hachigatsu itsuka): August 5


In Japan we do not have such a phrase, but nowadays most people work from Monday to Friday, many people feel happy when Friday comes. Friday is kinyobi (金曜日). So it was used to called hanakin (花金), literally flower money, meaning to have fun on Friday. It was used from 1985 but after the bursting of the bubble economy, this became obsolete word.

Have a nice weekend! In Japanese yoi shumatsu wo(よい週末を)!

Thursday, August 4, 2011

8月4日(hachigatsu yokka): August 4

They say August 4 is day of chopsticks. Chopsticks in Japanese is hashi (箸). August 4 is written as 8. 4. 8 can be read as ha, and 4 is read as shi. Therefore 8.4 is hashi and it is a day of chopsticks. This anniversary was established in 1975.
There are many homonym in Japanese.
If we hear hashi, we can easily think of hashi (箸) which means chopsticks, hashi (端) which means tip or end, and hashi(橋) which means bridge.
I want to be a bridge between Japan and other countries. In that case we can say kakehashi (懸け橋) for bridge too.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

8月3日(hachigatsu mikka): August 3

It rained heavily in Tokyo (東京) in the afternoon. But it was not raining in Yokohama (横浜).
There was the fireworks festival tonight at the Miurakaigan (三浦海岸) beach. The train was so crowded. There were many street stalls here and there. I haven't seen so many of them before.
Because of the Great Earthquakes, many places forbear the fireworks festivals and other fun events. Therefore more people must have come to see the fireworks festival all the way.
It started at 7:30 PM. I expected to see for an hour. But it finished around 8:10 PM. Climax was very nice.
I hope you will have a chance to see Japanese fireworks festival someday.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

8月2日(hachigatsu futsuka): August 2

Nadeshiko Japan will be given the People's Honour Award (国民栄誉賞: kokumin eiyo sho). Some sports men and women have received the award before, but as a group this will be the first case.
To have become a world cup champion made Japanese people encouraged, especially those who had damages by the Great Earthquake on March 11.
The never-give-up spirit is very important.

Monday, August 1, 2011

8月1日(hachigatsu tsuitachi): August 1

A new month has started. August is hachigatsu (八月) in Japanese. The old name is hazuki (葉月), literally leaf month.
They say it is day of sightseeing, and this week is sightseeing week. There are many festivals around this week, especially in the Tohoku (東北) area.
Speaking of August there is high school baseball tournament. It will start this Saturday. 49 teams from each prefecture were selected by today.
There were rather big earthquake.