Matsuri in Japan

We would like to introduce about “matsuri” in Japan in this article.

At first, do you know what “matsuri” means? Matsuri means festival in English. However, matsuri has a deeper connotation than that.

In Japanese, matsuri comes from the word, “matsuru”. Matsuru express a feeling of gratitude to Gods. And for him, we offer alcoholic beverages and some snacks to the Gods.

The picture describes “hinamatsuri”. It is on March 3, a day to celebrate health growth of girls. And on that day, we eat scattered sushi or cubic rice crackers for hinamatsuri.

There are some place where you can experience hinamatsuri. Please refer to the following website.


Abacus maths

Do you know what the picture above is? It is abacus and called “soroban” in Japan. And the purpose is to calculate.

Nowadays, we have little chance to use abacus because electronic calculator and personal computer have been widely used. And they enable us to calculate hundreds of millions of numbers in a fraction of a second.

However, it is said that abacus is effective for education, nowadays. And some school introduce abacus to class of math. Also, the number of abacus school is increasing little by little and got popularity. It is because a lot of students could be good at doing calculations in one’s head due to abacus.

Please try it!!




Bread pudding in Japan

We would like to introduce bread culture in Japan.

There are a lot of bakery in Japan. And they sell a variety of bread. For example, you could find bread stuffed with daily dish such as fried noodles and curry. Or some bread are with pudding and bean jam.

Also, you could buy all kinds of breads at convenience store, not only at bakery. Nowadays, it is popular for woman to make bread at home. And there is bread machine for rice flour. So people could enjoy bread at home easily.

At some coffee-house, they serve bread pudding as snack and breakfast. And it is one of the popular menu.

If you have chance, please visit the following coffee-shop. You could enjoy delicious bread pudding.



River eel

River eel is often eaten among Japanese. Especially, on the day of the ox in midsummer, people gang up to buy river eel. It is said that river eel is good for suffering from the summer heat. And there are a specialized restaurant for eel.

Originally, river eel has been eaten for a long time. In Edo Period, people became to eat river eel very often because a lot of eel can be seen by land reclamation. It was food for working person and much more reasonable.

It is recently that people eat it in the way such as grilled eel and spicy broiled eel bowl.

Here is the popular restaurant for river eel in Tokyo.



Nishikori beat down Nadal

Finally, Nishikori beat down Nadal!!

Kei Nishikori, 25, won a bitter victory. The opponent was Rafael Nadal, 29.

He already won over the other BIG4, Djokovic, Federer and Murray. So, inclucing this game, he won all BIG4.

Though his name is known in the world now, little people know his career.

He started tennis when he was 5 years ago. And he took the top spot in different meet. His great success attracted people’s attention, including people involved in tennis and he was invited camp training. After that, he became to take part in tennis fund and was bought out. He decided to practice in the United States. Present success is known broadly.

Everyone is looking forward to his further success and must pay attention to him.

tennis court

New Year’s greeting card

We would like to introduce New Year’s greeting card in this article.

As the name shows, New Year’s greeting card is a card which people send to their friends, relatives and boss. People start to write the card in advance to be delivered it on January 1.

Originally, in Nara and Heian era, people already sent greeting message though the form was completely different from present one. In 1873, postcard was issued and people became to send the card as a means of greeting of New Year.

Nowadays, the number of people who send the card is decreasing because of e-mail. However, it is still one of the important communication tool to express gratitude.


Vending machine in Japan

There are a variety kinds of vending machine in Japan.

It is from gum to instant noodle. Interestingly, banana or apple is also sold in the machine. However, the most popular one is beverage such as juice, water and coffee.

Also, you could buy cigarette in the machine. In Japan, people are allowed to smoke when they get 20 years old. However, everyone could buy it a little while ago. Nowadays, you need “taspo” to buy it. Taspo is a card which certify your age.

Originally, the first vending machine in Japan was invented by Mr. Tawaraya and it was a machine for cigarette. During 20 century, the number of machine was increasing. However, it is decreasing, nowadays.

Plese check the following website to find more interesting information.



Sightseeing in Kobe

We would like to introduce sightseeing place in Kobe.

Kobe is a name of city and it faces on both mountain and sea. And the picture above is “Sannomiya”, a downtown in Kobe.

A red tower on the left side of the picture is called “Kobe Port Tower”. It is a symbol of the city. At night, it is lighted up for a limited time only. Also, you could enjoy shopping around there.

Also, you can enjoy historical townscape when you visit Kitanozaka. It takes about 30 minutes by walk from Sannomiya station. A lot of foreigner used to live there.

It is convenient to use City Loop bus. It goes around Kobe in 60 minutes.