Belated New Year Card


In Japan, people begin to move to their hometown around the end of the year, stay with family, eat ozoni or osechi(New Year dishes) and exchange New Year Cards. Although, less and less people exchange paper cards these days. This year’s symbol(Chinese) is snake.

I had some topics to write here, and checking traffics every day, just my life was sort of chaos to write blog in English.

I hope I would update more often this year…

So, belated happy new year 2013!




Soundtrack of “Taira no Kiyomori” is Available

by [Z]ZAPAnetサーチ2.0

There are some people who are looking for “Taira no Kiyomori” information. It’s a pity it cannot be seen outside of paid channel, recently I found that soundtrack is available. There are two of them.

The drama is said that it has only low rates, but for me it’s very enjoyable.

The stations I stop by are often campaigning the trip to Kobe or Kyoto.

Statue of Kiyomori etc.


Stamp rally in Kobe.

More Kiyomori-related topics will coming up…

Japanese Cotton Handkerchief (Tenugui) Shop, Anzu

When I go to Kanazawa to go to clinic, sometimes enjoy shopping like this.

I was wondering what this shop was from the long time before. Actually it turned out that it’s Tenugui shop.

Kanazawa has lots of local and special veggies.

Displayed like this. Small bag (kinchaku) and cases for smartphones are also aveilable.

In Japan, sometimes “I’ll rest my bone” means “I’m going to take a rest”.

Although I didn’t have extra money to buy it, but after heard dyeing manufacturer stopped making this one, changed a mind. It’s so well dyed. It’s a shortest prayer in Buddhism, Hannya Shinkyo, in Japanese about 300 letters.

44 Daiku-machi Kanazawa City
Tel 076-221-1787

Latin Festival in Toyama (2)(Sep 15&16, 2012)

Failed to write, this is an official blog of Latin Festival in Toyama
Link(only Japanese)

From the entry 1. Around the evening, dances have started on the stage. Very neat.

Another dance.

Greeting from the dancers.


Inca Cola(golden colour, slightly sweet. Perhaps 150 yen) and Linguiça (sausage) which Japan-Brazil Friendship Association members were baking. There was a friendly Japanese-Brazilian lady and we talked a while, got an invitation to join to association.

The head of association himself was baking them. 400 yen and very juicy.

Later on my way home, bought guarana juice(150 yen, perhaps). Ordinary taste.

Accompanied with such food and drinks, listened the live of WAYNO. It’s a folklore band consists of one Japanese and Latinamericanos such as Peruvian. I’ve known them from several years before, but not having chance to hear them play. This stage’s PA was not good enough, so couldn’t hear what they were talking in MC, although the play was terrific.

Luis Vircherrez(quena, zampona)
Francisco Rodriguez(guitar)
Leider A Dorado(charango)
Cesar Fereira(percussion)
Hideji Taninaka(bass)

Last year’s play. It was raining.

WAYNO’s flag taken in daytime.

The band, playing.

Full of crowd.

In the last part, dancers appeared before came again. Not well taken, this is a best shot.

My new sneakers were not fit, pain in my feet, got back to souvenir shop and bought this. About 200 yen or 300 yen. Nazca Geoglyphs carved in small stones. Hummingbird was so normal, I thought , so chose Owl man.

Actual Nazca Geoglyph From “YUSUKE’s blog”

So I’ve bought garana juice in Brazilian stand, took a Centram and went home. I’ve missed to taste lots of things, maybe will try next year.

Lastly, garana juice.

Two Ferrets Play and Sleep Together

As I haven’t got long time to write, set aside Latin Festival and will write about my ferrets.

It’s 2 months and a bit since I adopted a big sable ferret boy, Mint. He likes to escape from upstairs and run around downstairs happily, once he nearly escaped from my home. Maybe that’s why he got lost(in Japan such cases, they are under protection of the police. Once ferrets get lost, they haven’t got instinct to return home usually).

Maybe I need a circle, but money for this disappeared for vet’s fee. Mint had ear mites, Nana had bowel problem and prescribed lactic acid bacteria, which she liked much.

These days, it became quite chilly, I pulled out a hammock made by fleece. two are sleeping well like this. When released, often they are found in my futon, curled.

And more, the two have become playing together.

Many ferret owners have multiple ferrets, it’s because they are social.

Latin Festival in Toyama 1 (Sep 15th&16th, 2012)

Finally I have a time to write proper post because I’ve done two language exams!

I have been interested in this festival from before, and this 3rd time, it was not held at Kansui Park (the north exit side of Toyama Station) where I’m not hanging around, instead Grand Plaza next to Daiwa Department Store. So I went to see what was going on. As there are lots of photos, two entries.

Went to Kinokuniya Book Store in Daiwa, paid fee for Spanish exam.

Around the time I went(3pm), brass band performance was over, but seats were quite occupied enough you cannot find the seat to sit easily. And seats were full later…

These are seats quite in front. This sort of flag is of WAYNO, folklore band. I’ve known them from some time ago, and was looking forward to listening to them on live.

First, you buy food ticket of 1000 yen, equivalent of 1100 yen. Then bought Cusqueña, Peruvian beer, and Pão de queijo, cheese bread from Brazil.

Thus I wandered around shops in pleasantly drunken mood.

I’ve promised the shop owner man to introduce his shop on the net, but sorry, the name of the shop cannot be seen! OMG. Really sorry. He was so kind and generous.

There were so many souvenirs of Andes, among of them I’ve purchased a key ring of zampoña. It’s like a pan flute, and you can play this small key ring! About 300 yen. My favourite instrument.

People gathering to the shop.

Later, I’ve found an arpa! It’s south american harp, and its tone is brighter than western one.

Also, some drums.

A stuffed alpaca, so fluffy.

I went back to this shop later on(in Part 2).

There was also an instrument shop selling quenas, cross flutes, guitars, charangos (sort of guitar) and Latin CDs. As a former (western) flute player, I was eager to play quena and zampoña, only to fail. I can emit a slight tone, but that’s all. I really wanted Latin CDs if my budget permitted…

A guitar.

If the owner comes back next year, even I cannot buy instrument(then I will need to practice), would buy something else.

Go back to foods. I cannot remember what it was, some mincemeat was in and it was fried.  Some kind of croquette?

The things listed here I almost missed because the Brazilian sausage I ate later was so giant, anyway they sold foods like this.

As the night approaches, on the stage they are more energetic. One thing to complain, it cannot helped because it’s (half) outside, this Grand Plaza is not suitable for listening to live music performance…but I’m just a listner, not a professional.

Still I enjoyed dances and music of several countries. Will write soon.

Umeshu(Japanese plum liquor) Is Done

My post in last summer: Umeshu (Japanese plum liquor)

To make umeshu, you need plums (usually 1kg), crystal sugar (I use about 400-500g) and liquor called “white liquor”, which is kind of shocyu (1.8L).
This year, I used brandy instead.

After waiting 3 months, you can taste it finally. Although there are aged umeshu like old whiskey.

I don’t know what is appropriate for this liquor, and chose some natural cheese (I like it very much!) or Japanese pears.

Served in the glass.

Japanese pear. It’s very tasty and sweet in here, but not very known to rest of Japan. A mug(mine) is for size comparison.

Just Before The Italian Qualification Exam

I have been studying for 2 months for the Italian Certification Exam (Italiano: Prova di ablità linguistica associazione linguistica italiana in giappone), perhaps only aknowledged in Japan, on Sunday. This time intermediate level.

Hoping go get translating jobs between Italian and Spanish->Japanese at present, even though already have been listening to NHK’s language TV/radio programmes for many years, I began to think for getting qualifications recently. Maybe Spanish or Italian qualification test for foreign learners in the future, traveling to Tokyo…

On 21st, Spanish exam is waiting, also intermediate level.

Not intending to expand my languages’ number, but already enjoying the different cultures from Japanese or English-speaking countries.

After the exam on Sunday, going to a lecture of “Da Vinci Code” translator originated from Kanazawa (exam takes place in Kanazawa).

A Pet Gone , New Pet Came

My Cat Has Disappeared to Somewhere.

Couldn’t write because I’ve lost will to post in English(somehow, in Japanese okay), this summer (and even September) was super hot! Now fatigue after heat is coming to me… or maybe I’m a bit depressive. But anyway I’m fine!

Our ex-stray cat has disappeared on 29th July, and never came back. Still I think about her, when I see pics of someone’s cats. Scanning her old photos to make a photo album. As I live with old parents, even they love cats they cannot have a new one cause he/she might live longer than them.

Then, in August, I’ve heard about a lost ferret nearby via the net. Eventually I had a long drive to take him and got him, named Mint, he’s about 1 yo big sable boy(1.40 kg and looks very big). Being very tamed from the first, these days he started gently bite me, and lick me (if ferrets bite in their utmost power, they could make a hole in our hand). Probably he is beginning to regard me as his friend. Of course, on calling “Come on, Mint”, he eventually comes to me after he has fooled around me.

Recently he likes to hide in “oshiire”, sort of Japanese closet where we put futons, clothes and needless things.

The problem was Nana, who was already living here. She fell a bit ill, lost considerable weight. I needed to separate cages, as well as ferrets,  and weigh how much she ate every day, plus giving her prescribed lactic acid bacteria etc., (nice thing was she quite fond of it). Since August, went to vet several times.

Now all was settled down, they play together sometimes, not always but sleep together at times.

Not well taken but it’s the moment they’re together.

Above tube is called Super Thru-way by company called Marshall, about max. of 6m length, my fuzzies like to dive into it. Ferrets love hole or narrow places by nature.

Holding two ferrets in my arms is quite happy moment.

No idea how much ppl are reading this periodically, will update more regularly.

Attending Niigata Science Cafe

On Aug 25th, I set out to neighbouring Niigata to attend “Niigata Science Cafe”. Took a long-distance coach around 7:50, rode on a motorway for about 3 and half hours.

Between the boundary of Toyama and Niigata, there is a sea called “Oya-Shirazu”, means “Don’t care for parents”. Precisely, “Don’t care for parents, nor children”. Because of turbulent waves, parent and child passed by used to escape without minding the other in the old days.

Now, it’s just a clear and quiet sea, if you had an eye you could find jade stones.

There is a break-time, at a rest area. You can get drinks, meals and souvenirs.

Around noon, our coach reached to Niigata City.

My lunch. A soba in a container called “Hegi”, thus called “Hegi Soba”. This one contained some sea vegetables.

With full stomach, I headed to the bookshop which the cafe was held, located the other side of Niigata Station(below).

This is inside gigantic Junkdo bookstore, first basement. Tons of medical, science, arts…etc.

There was a space for multi-purpose with a piano, accompanied by a tea shop. You pay for a drink and listen to what lecturers say.

I arrived too early for the second lecture I was attending, so went round a store and had some chat with staffs.

Voluntary staffs. Because this day’s theme was “elements”. Cool T-shirts.

A publisher specialised in chemistry, Kagaku-dojin released cards called “Elemen-tramp”. It’s a set of playing cards available from elementary school children, consisting of elements and elementary particles(perhaps latter are like Jokers). The rule is somewhat like Pokemon cards, maybe children would get used to it sooner. For me, it was a bit confusing.

Kids played them before the lecture.

Now the time of the talk…

Mr. Kentaro Sato studied organic chemistry (like me), got master’s degree, and worked for certain pharmaceutical company for 15 years. He is an owner of the blog called “Organic Chemistry Museum-branch(in Japanese only)“and actively writing about chemistry with beautiful computer graphics. His lecture was named “113 Elements Consists The World, Get Closer To Their Truth”.

Very enjoyable topic, but he told he was thinking to talk it somewhere else later, I wouldn’t spill out what I’ve heard.

Just one pic. Pure Cesium crystal. It’s a hot element in Japan after quake and accident of atomic power station, although most of cesium is not radioactive.

I was invited to some drinks, but regretfully needed to take a returning coach soon. I’ll write here soon, got a new ferret 1 week before that and needed to care of him.

From the bus, a beautiful sunset was seen. It was really hot this summer, indeed…

Soon it was gone, instead a half-moon appeared. Not taken well with my Android.

Then Android’s battery was gone, so I concentrated on the book I’ve taken with me. Walked from nearest train station, arrived home at 10:30. Two fuzzies were waiting for me.

It turned out that Niigata was not so far, even it’s a quite long (north to south) Prefecture. If I had a chance, like to visit this cafe again!