This article about my experience of mahjong in Japan was first published on a now defunct blog back in 2001. From quite early on in my life I had wanted to learn to play mahjong. The teeming variety and exotic charm of the tiles fascinated me. When I accepted a [Read more…]
Tengu are mythical Japanese demon-gods (yokei) who live in remote forests and mountains of Japan. A typical Tengu has a red face with a long, somewhat obscene red nose. Tengu usually have bushy eyebrows and beards as well. The characters that make up the work Tengu mean “heaven” + “dog” [Read more…]
Title: Day Trip to Mihara Location: Hiroshima Prefecture Link out: Click here Description: A day trip to Mihara to visit Tim Buthod, go to a festival and various izakaya and bars… Date: 2012-05-26 The bullet train station at Mihara is built on the ruins of Mihara castle. On our way [Read more…]
We had a fine time of it in Kagoshima and Miyazaki. Here are some photos of our holiday. The first three were taken by Neil… sadly the rest, which I was hosting on Blue Melon, were lost when I failed to back them up and forgot to renew the subscription… [Read more…]
Yippee! We are off to Kagoshima and Miyazaki for our summer holidays in the second half of August! It will be our second visit to southern Kyushu in two years. Last summer we flew to Miyazaki from the good old Hiroshima Kannon airport, conveniently located in the south of Hiroshima [Read more…]
“I open my heart to myself like a sort of vitrine, and examine one by one all those love affairs of which the world can know nothing.” Charles Swann, in Cities of the Plain by Marcel Proust In his fascinating book, The Hare with Amber Eyes: A Family’s Century of [Read more…]
A few months ago I was struck by the paucity of theatrical productions in Hiroshima and berated a few of my students on the matter. The pat answer was invariably “Ah, Japanese are very shy.” My protests don’t seem to have had much effect on the recreational habits of the million or so “shy” Hiroshimites, but they did land me a handful of free tickets for a kyogen performance on the noh stage at Aster Plaza towards the end of March.
This is the first of three articles I wrote for the Hiroshima Signpost magazine about my overland journey from Hiroshima to Berlin in September 1991. In this article, I leave Japan by ferry from Osaka and arrive in Shanghai three days later.
The BBC’s Julian May has produced an excellent – I want to say “beautiful” – radio programme for the Heart and Soul series about the bronze temple bells – bonshou – of Japan. The programme captures the physical and symbolic power of these bells very well: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p006dg47 A bonsho bell [Read more…]