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Category: Japan08

  • Reflections on running water – flying

    On this trip I felt like there were five stages to each of the flights. The first is when you take-off. With the powerful thrust pushing you back into your seat there is excitement. You watch as the ground disappears beneath you, trying to locate features before you disappear into the clouds. Then there is… Read more

  • Reflections on the running water – Japan

    It’s now a week since we returned from Japan and there has been time to reflect on the journey. Negatives first. I feel that the holiday was too short, too rushed. We seemed to spend a good portion of each day travelling on trains. For me, that is not unusual as my daily commute to… Read more

  • The sound of running water

    We made it home from Osaka. There is a special feeling that comes when your arrive at your house after a holiday. It is utter relaxation. No longer do you need to worry about other language or customs. There is no need to look up directions, to plan out your day, to journey between sights.… Read more

  • Shopping in Osaka

    Just watching BBC World News as live scorpions are being deep fried in a Beijing market. Now it’s pork in steamed egg in a Chinese take-away. Brings back memories, but I know which country I prefer right now as a tourist. Yes, it’s Japan. And I don’t want to leave. [How do you eat duck… Read more

  • Tale of the Orange Sarubobo

    Each morning the Takayama locals hold a couple morning markets alongside the river. While there are many tourist goods for sale, there are also farmers selling fresh vegetables and pickles from small stalls. It was from a shop alongside the Miyagawa market that I bought by little orange sarubobo doll. The sarubobo was designed to… Read more

  • Beefing it up in Takayama

    First Matsuyama. Then Takamatsu. Now Takayama. Pine mountain. Tall pine. Tall mountain. Not all beauty in Japan is on a miniature scale. The train ride between Nagoya and Takayama is incredibly scenic, running along deep river gorges of boulders and jagged rocks on the way up into the mountains. There was an English/Japanese brochure detailing… Read more

  • You go, me go, Tsumago

    Poor B, she doesn’t have the same levels of energy anymore and with pregnancy we’ve had to slow down and make certain we have meal breaks at the appropriate times. It doesn’t mean we can’t still have fun. Today we caught the Shinano Express to Nakatsugawa, a journey of less than an hour. The intention… Read more

  • Pine trees, tea and fruits

    As I begin writing this we are speeding across Japan at hundreds of kilometres per hour not knowing where we will stay tonight. Our Series 700 ‘Hikari’ Shinkansen will deliver us to Nagoya, but we have not booked any accommodation. Outside the window the sun is a mere patch of glowing yellow in a hazy… Read more

  • Bring you a roman

    Sweet hearts and dreams bring you a roman. Or so says the cover of the Matsuyama brochure handed to us at the tourist office. What it means, I have no clue. It’s been a day of strange things. We squeezed on a subway train to Shin-Osaka station, exchanged our JR Pass vouchers for actual passes… Read more

  • Return to Osaka

    Hello Osaka, we’re back! For once we were fully packed and ready to go when B’s brother arrived to give us a lift to the airport. But when I opened the door I was hit by a hyper-excited bundle of brown and cream fluff. Michael had brought Kita (that’s Japanese for North and Finnish for… Read more