Monday, October 31, 2011

10月31日(jyugatsu sanjyuichi nichi): October 31

A Happy Halloween!
In Japan there is a famous parade in Kawasaki (川崎), Japan. The 15th parade was held yesterday. About 3,500 people participated and marched for 1.5 km and there were about 110,000 spectators. I have been there once.

They say today the world population reached 7 billion. In 1959 there were 3 billion. In just a half century it became more than double. To those who were born today in Japan are given the certificate from UNFPA (United Nations Population Fund) Tokyo Office that says "You are one of the 7,000,000,000th babies in the world."

Sunday, October 30, 2011

10月30日(jyugatsu sanjyu nichi): October 30

Last Sunday of October. There are only 2 months left this year.
There were many natural disasters here and there this year, and are still happening.
How about your 10 months?

Saturday, October 29, 2011

10月29日(jyugatsu nijyuku nichi): October 29

There has been something wrong with the washing machine these days. So I asked the repair. It cost yen 13,200, but I am glad it is fixed. It's been 6 years since we bought it. At that time it was the best one and expensive. Since it is possible to wash and dry in one machine, it is convenient. Before that washing machine, washing drum was separated from the dryer drum. We only used the dryer when we needed. But after buying this, we always use the dryer too.

It was a fine autumn day. Sky was blue and beautiful. I dried futon (布団)outside.

Friday, October 28, 2011

10月28日(jyugatsu nijyu hachi nichi): October 28

It's been getting colder.
I was so busy that I could not get on the last train. I had to come back from the next station by taxi. There is only one station, but I do not know why they don't run until the terminal.
After came back home, I watched some TV programs which are interesting. They were about the leading company and the paragliding races in the Alps.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

10月27日(jyugatsu nijyu shichi nichi): October 27

It is getting colder.

According to today's newspaper, the population of Japan in October 2010 was 128,057,352. Among them men are 62,327,737 and women are 65,729,615. It is the 10th in the world. It is 1.9 % of the total population of the world. There are 29,246,000 people who are older than 65 years old, which occupies 23.0%.
The world population is expected to reach 7,000,000,000 on October 31. Among them 4,200,000,000 are Asian which occupies 60 %.
China has 1,350,000,000, India has 1,240,000,000, the USA has 310,000,000, and Indonesia has 240,000,000.
In 1987 the world population reached 5,000,000,000 and in 1999 it reached 6,000,000,000.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

10月26日(jyugatsu nijyuroku nichi): October 26

Yesterday it was very hot and became a summer day. But today it was rather cool. In the evening the cold winter wind No. 1 called kogarashi ichigo (木枯らし一号) blew.
In today's news I saw many women were active in many different scenes. For example in the morning Yokohama City Mayor, Ms. Fumiko Hayashi (林文子) concluded the agreement with Ms. Sadako Ogata (緒方貞子), president of JICA.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

10月25日(jyugatsu nijyugo nichi): October 25

It was warm like summer today. But it will be colder tomorrow.
Today $1 became yen 75.73, which is the highest after the World War II. For those who would like to go abroad, it is a good time. But for the exporting companies, it is a matter of life or death.

Monday, October 24, 2011

10月24日(jyugatsu nijyuyokka): October 24

Today is soko (霜降), one of nijyushisekki (二十四節季), the 24 solar terms. The last one was kanro(寒露) on October 9 and the next one is ritto (立冬) on November 8.
Soko (霜降) literally means frost fall. But it was not so cold today.
Today I got a postcard from Nepal which I wrote during my trip there. It's been almost a month since I came back home. Usually I write many post cards during my trip. I bought many postcards but this time I only sent it to me.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

10月23日(jyugatsu nijyusan nichi): October 23

After coming back to Tokyo (東京) by shinkansen Hikari (新幹線ひかり号), I looked around the coin locker to keep my carry case. Unfortunately all were full and I had to bring to the venue of the Nikkei (日経) Senior Work Life Forum 2011.
The special lecture was made by a famous stage director, Amon Miyamoto (宮本亜門) for an hour. The title was "It's interesting because it's different. It's wonderful because it's not different."
The lecture was mainly about his life experience and it was interesting. After the lecture I bought a book with autograph written by him. I asked him to take a picture with me and he was kind enough to do so and we shook hands.
On my way back home, I started reading the book. It is interesting.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

10月22日(jyugatsu nijyuni nichi): October 22

I arrived at Nagoya (名古屋) around 7 AM.
I took a local train for about 30 minutes. One of my cousins came to pick me up at the station and we went to coffee shop to have breakfast.
In Aichi (愛知) there are many coffee shops. And "Morning" is very famous. If you order a cup of coffee or tea or any soft drinks, there comes toast, salad, boiled egg, and desert with it. But it costs only for drinks.
In Tokyo (東京) if you want to eat such amount, we order "Morning set" and it cost around yen 500 or so.
So I have been interested in visiting coffee shops in the morning in Aichi. I added yen 100 to a cup of tea and got sandwiches.

In the morning there was a memorial service of my dead cousin and I met many relatives.

Friday, October 21, 2011

10月21日(jyugatsu nijyuichi nichi): October 21

There will be the 35 day ceremony of my cousin's death tomorrow in Aichi (愛知). I was wondering how to go.
If you want to save time, you can take Shinkansen Nozomi (新幹線のぞみ) which takes about 1 hour and 50 minutes from Tokyo (東京) to Nagoya (名古屋) and costs yen 10,580. If you want to save money, you can take a night bus, which costs less than a half of Shinkansen, but it takes about 7 hours and a half.
There is an economical way to go there, which is puratto kodama (ぷらっとこだま) plan using Shinkansen but stopping every station between Tokyo and Nagoya. It costs yen 7,900 with a drink. You need to book at least one day before.
Since I was not sure how long I have to overwork, I decided to go there by bus.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

10月20日(jyugatsu hatsuka): October 20

Today is the 77th birthday of Empress. 77 years old is called kijyu (喜寿).
There are some milestone birthdays in Japan. They are 20 (hatachi:二十歳), 30 (misoji:三十路), 40 (yosoji:四十路), 50 (isoji:五十路), 60 (musoji:六十路), 61(kanreki:還暦), 70 (koki:古稀) , 77 (kijyu:喜寿), 80 (sanjyu:傘寿), 88 (beijyu:米寿), 90 (sotujyu:卒寿), 99 (hakujyu:白寿), 100 (momojyu:百寿), and 120 (daikanreki:大還暦).
How about in your country?

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

10月19日(jyugatu jyuku nichi): October 19

It was rather cool this morning and evening. It seemed warm in the daytime, but since I was in the office I did not notice.
They say October 19 is day of travel abroad. Why? October 19 is written as 10.19. and read "toku e iku (遠くへ行く)" ,toku is to(10) ku and iku is i(1) ku (9). Toku (遠く) is far away, iku (行く) is to go. Therefore going far away means going abroad. It is supposed to think of the pleasure of going abroad.
My last trip was to go to Nepal and Hong Kong in September. I could meet some friends and had a good time here and there.
My next destinations are Egypt, Turkey, and Greece via London next summer if possible.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

10月18日(jyugatsu jyuhachi nichi): October 18

Today Chunichi Dragons (中日ドラゴンズ) became a champion for the Central league of Japanese baseball for 2 years straight. It is their 9th victory and it is the first time to win two consecutive championships in 76 years of their team history since 1936.
For the manager Hiromitsu Ochiai (落合博満), 57 years old, it was the 4th victory during his 8 years management. He will retire after this season.
I am not a big fan of baseball. But after the championship games, there are bargain sales at the related department stores which is a little bit attractive.

Monday, October 17, 2011

10月17日(jyugatsu jyushichi nichi): October 17

I have just read an amazing article in the evening newspaper and seen the same news on TV.
It happened in Toronto, Canada yesterday. A 100 years old Indian Englishman ran full marathon, finished at 8 hours 25 minutes 16 seconds and made a world record for the oldest person that completed the marathon.
They say he started the marathon at the age of 89 years old and this was the 8th time. He finished at 5 hours 40 minutes 1 second in 2003 and made the record for more than 90 years old.
These days 100 years old persons look active such as Dr. Shigeaki Hinohara (日野原重明) and a poet Ms. Toyo Shibata (柴田トヨ). It's amazing.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

10月16日(jyugatsu jyuroku nichi): October 16

It is a season of new TV programs. I have just watched one of them titled "Nankyoku tairiku (南極大陸)", Antarctic. It started at 9 PM and lasted for 2 hours tonight for a special version. It is a story of a ship on an expedition to Antarctica.
To make a big project there are so many people involved.

Have you ever been to Antarctic?
I have been there once in Feb. 2004 when I circumnavigated the world by peaceboat. It was different from the place I imaged.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

10月15日(jyugatsu jyugo nichi): October 15

I watched the Artistic Gymnastics World Championships Tokyo 2011 on TV today.
The result of Japanese women was not so good but men's was good.
Yesterday, Mr. Kohei Uchimura(内村航平) has become a champion for three times straight for Men's All Around which was the first in history.
Today he got a gold medal for Men's Floor Exercise. It has been 37 years since a Japanese man got a gold medal for this program last time. Congratulations!
He said he was glad to get it but not satisfied with the contents.
We can expect more for his future performance.

Friday, October 14, 2011

10月14日(jyugatsu jyuyokka): October 14

I went to see a movie "Dear John" after work. Its Japanese title is "shin ai naru kimi e(親愛なるきみへ)" meaning "Dear You." English title is the beginning of the letter from a woman to a man named John. But from Japanese title we feel it's a letter from a man to a woman. It's opposite. Interesting, isn't it?

Thursday, October 13, 2011

10月13日(jyugatsu jyusan nichi): October 13

I went to preview (下見:shitami) a conference room, a banquet room, a restaurant, and a facility for the coming program with a colleague and ate lunch there together. Rooms were fine, but we decided not to use the restaurant because of the menu which had a small variety of dishes than we expected. I think preview is very important.
On our way back to the office we talked many things. We have been working in the same office more than one year but we seldom had a chance to talk about private issue, so we enjoyed knowing each other.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

10月12日(jyugatsu jyuni nichi): October 12

Yesterday I took my father to the dentist and hospital. At the dental office where is my high school friend's house I got calendars of 2012. Since I did not expect that at all, I was surprised to realize the end of the year is coming soon. 24 hours a day is surely passing.
What were your resolutions of this year? Did you accomplish them?
I made some resolutions but I wasted much time and have not accomplished yet. I hope to accomplish as much as possible.

10月11日(jyugatsu jyuichi nichi): October 11

It's been 7 months since the Great East Japan Earthquake happened. Last week I went to Iwate (岩手) and visited some devastated areas such as Miyako (宮古), Taro (田老) area, Otsuchicho (大槌町), Kamaishi (釜石), Ofunato (大船渡), and Rikuzentakata (陸前高田). There were many mountains of debris here and there.
Some signals were not working and policemen were directing instead. They say it was because not only matter of electricity but also matter of money. To repair the signal itself costs a lot, but to keep it working costs more.
They say all of the shelters in Ishinomaki (石巻) were closed today, and most of the fugitives went back to their broken house or temporary housing. Some people moved to the waiting place.
I could not imagine how long it will take to recover, but I hope the early recovery.

Monday, October 10, 2011

10月10日(jyugatsu toka): October 10

Today is a national holiday called taiiku no hi (体育の日), Physical Education Day. It was established in 1966 to commemorate the opening of the Tokyo Olympic in 1964. It has been on October 10, but since 2000 it falls on the second Monday of October to have a happy Monday. So it has been 6 years since 2005 which falls on October 10.
This is the three day weekend. It is a good season to see colored leaves. So many people must have been to the northern area to see them.
I was in Iwate last week, but leaves have not turned in red and yellow yet.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

10月9日(jyugatsu kokonoka): October 9

Today is kanro (寒露), one of nijyushisekki (二十四節季), the 24 solar terms. The last one was shubun (秋分) on September 23 and the next one is soko (霜降) on October 24. Kanro literally means cold dew. It was not so cold today. Weather was fine and it was good for the Athletic meeting. There was the one in my town too, though I did not attend.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

10月8日(jyugatsu yoka): October 8

The first day of the three day weekend.
It was fine today.
When you travel in Japan by train, many people enjoy boxed meals called ekiben (駅弁), literally station lunch box, because depends on the place the contents are different. There are many famous ekiben. I bought sanriku uminoko bento(三陸海の子弁当) which was yen 1000. Sanriku is the name of the ocean coast, uminoko is child of the sea.
It included scallops, salmon roes, sea urchin, egg, and seaweed. Sanriku is very famous for seafood. I enjoyed every meal while traveling there.

10月7日(jyugatsu nanoka): October 7

In the morning I walked along the beach of Jodogahama (浄土ヶ浜). The landscape was still beautiful but there seems the remain of Tsunami (津波). I have found many walnuts there, which reminded me of the sea beans of Florida beach.
After that I have visited the devastated areas by Tsunami. There are mountains of debris here and there. There were some buildings left but everything inside seemed washed away. Cars were unbelievably crushed, banks were broken, guardrails and traffic signs were bent. Big ships were landed.
I was astonished by the power of the water which ruined the cities. I can't imagine how long it will take to get normal.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

10月6日(jyugatsu muika): October 6

I am now in Jodogahama, Iwate (岩手県浄土ヶ浜). I came here by JR Tohoku shinkansen (東北新幹線) from Tokyo (東京) to Morioka (盛岡) which took about 2 hours and a half, and by car which took about 2 hours and a half. This is the first time for me to get on Hayate (はやて), which is one of the names of the Tohoku shinkansen train. All was the reserved seat. It only stopped at 2 stations before arriving at Morioka, that is, Omiya (大宮) and Sendai (仙台).
At the Tokyo station I found a very interesting vending machine. It sells canned bread. Have you ever seen? I have never seen so that I took a picture.
It was very cold yesterday, but today it was not so cold. In Tokyo it stopped raining and was going to be fine, but here it rained sometimes.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

10月5日(jyugatsu itsuka): October 5

It has been raining since this morning and getting colder these days.
June 1 and October 1 are known as koromogae (衣替え), changing clothes. Junior high school students and high school students who have uniform change their summer uniform to winter uniform from October 1, that is they start wearing a jacket.
On June 1 they change from winter uniform to summer uniform.
It seems warm in the daytime tomorrow.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

10月4日(jyugatsu yokka): October 4

Happy Birthday to Dr. Shigeaki Hinohara (日野原重明)! He became 100 years old and he is still a medical doctor and writes many books. In today's newspaper there are many advertisement of his books. He wrote more than 200 books. A book titled "Ikikata jyozu (行き方上手)", meaning good at living, is a million seller.
I have been to listen to his lecture in 2005 once when I was in Nagoya (名古屋). I respect him.
I hope he will live long and keep encouraging many people.

Monday, October 3, 2011

10月3日(jyugatsu mikka): October 3

It was rather cold in the morning and in the night. Autumn is coming.
There are only less than 3 months left this year.
There are so many things happened this year so far and many people's sense of value and the life style must have been changed a lot.
How about you?

Sunday, October 2, 2011

10月2日(jyugatsu futsuka): October 2

First Sunday of October.
I read through the newspaper of September because I could not read during my trip to Nepal.

There were 2 women whom I have met / seen before passed away in September. One is Ms. Toshie Kanamori (金森トシエ) who was a journalist died of pneumonia at the age of 85 years old and the other is Ms. Wangari Muta Maathai from Kenya who was the winner of the Nobel Peace Prize died of cancer at the age of 71 years old.
Both were very active and I respected them. I pray for the souls of them.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

10月1日(jyugatsu tsuitachi): October 1

Another month has just started. October is jyugatsu (十月) in Japanese. Its old name is kannazuki (神無月), literally god without month. All Japanese gods gather in Izumo (出雲), therefore there will be no gods in other areas. In Izumo it is called kamiarizuki (神在月), literally god exists month.

The last day for NHK's morning drama ohisama (おひさま), the Sun.

I was very busy today. I renewed the car insurance in the morning and went grocery shopping and to Shinjuku to see the performance of Japanese drams so-called wadaiko (和太鼓). It was very powerful.