Enoshima and Ito Onsen
Enoshima and Ito Onsen 2016.12.16-17 My wife and I went to Ito Onsen to enjoy Onsen and sea foods. On the way to Ito, we visited Enoshima for lunch. The island and the beach was beautiful by the fine weather. After that, we also visited the grave of my father-in-law. This month falls on the anniversary of his death. In the next day, we walked around the Ito beach and bought some local foods to take home such as dried fish and oranges.
A Famous Autumnal Ginkgo Avenue
A Famous Autumnal Ginkgo Avenue 2016.11.12 In this season, I sometimes walk around at the place where sign of autumn could be seen. One of the spots is my old university, Keio. The University is famous of autumnal ginkgo tree avenue. Ginko avenue in the university is gradually changing from green to yellow. The leafs color sometimes looks like gold by reflecting of the sun light. Trip to Hiroshima Postponed My wife and I planed to go to Hiroshima for the first time after 30 years in November. We were looking forward to visiting there. Because we have a plenty happy memories in Hiroshima. I was transferred to Hiroshima Branch of my company when I was 31 years old. Soon after, I married and We started a newly‐married life in Hiroshima.
The trip was canceled due to some reasons. Unfortunately, we Had to cancel our trip this time, but we will reschedule it for next year.
越後湯沢 Echigo Yuzawa
越後湯沢 Echigo Yuzawa 2016.10.10- 11 My wife and I visited Echigo Yuzawa which is located 200 km north from Yokohama and famous as hot spring and ski resort area. We left our home at 6:45 and arrived at the Yuzawa Heights at 10:40. The whether was cloudy , but we enjoyed beautiful mountain scenery and mountain walking. After having lunch at the height, we went to Bokushi Ave. which is famous to reserve the traditional old houses. The street was named after Suzuki Bokushi who was a wealthy merchant in the 18 century. The street was made in the image of
to imitate the post station in the Edo period. The project started in from 2003 and it took 6 years to complete in its current form, 350 m street. It ‘s like going back to the Edo period in time. We stayed at the Toslove Yuzawa and rested in the hot spring.
Next day, we visited Zuisho Ann temple and Kiyotu Gorge(清津峡) which is one of the three major gorges along with Kurobe (黒部渓谷） and Oosugitani (大杉谷）. We also visited Ishiuti-Maruyama Ski area where I often went skiing when I was in my 20’s. After having lunch and shopping at the road side local shopping area called “Minami Uonuma – Yukiakari” (南魚沼ー雪明り）, we got went back home at 3 pm.
軽井沢 Karuizawa in Rain
軽井沢 Karuizawa in Rain 2016.9.19-20 Due to the influence of the typhoon no.16, our travel was mostly in rain. My wife and I left Yokohama at 7:30 and arrived at Karuizawa at 9:15. First, we visited a vegetables and fruits shop named “ふれあいの森: Fureai-no-Mori” and bought corn, apple, grapes, prunes and so on. Especially, corn and apples are delicious and very cheap. We made a brief stopover at the Shiraito Water Falls. Fortunately, when we could see the water falls, the rain was temporally stopped. After having lunch at Kyu-Karuizawa Ginza, we planned to stroll around the town at first, but due to the rain, we instead went shopping at the big shopping mall. The shopping mall was so huge, we could spend 3 hours in total and we walked till our legs got stiff. Fortunately, the Mariott Hotel provided the hot spring and the spa could rested our legs. The next day, we left Karuizawa in the morning before the typhoon came.
Road Station (道の駅） near Izu Villa
Road Station (道の駅） In Japan, we have many road stations called “Michi no Eki” or “Road Station”. It has many shopping stores , restaurants and of-course large parking area. My wife and I visited a station near Izu Villa called Mura-no-Eki (村の駅）and bought many fruits and vegetables – mainly produced by the local farmers. We also bought eggs which was a little expensive but the egg was produced by the hens eating paprika and oyster’s shell raised freely under the mineral rich red cray of Hakone mountain.
The Midsummer Day of the Ox（土用の丑の日）
My wife , Satoshi – my younger son visiting my home today, and I went to eat eel at the eel restaurant near my house. The restaurant was very crowded and we had to wait one and a half hours. In Japan, we eat eel on the day – “Doyou-no- Ushi-no-Hi” (土用の丑の日). My wife and I were surprised and delighted that Satoshi paid all the fee for the restaurant for us. The eel restaurant “しま村” What is Doyou（土用）? Doyou means 18 days before the first day of each season. What is Ushi（牛）? Ushi is ox in English. The name comes from Chinese zodiac calender which consists of 12 animals and imaginary creatures to name months and days which are periodically appear on the calender. So What is “Doyou-no-Ushi-no-Hi”? There are at least 4 days designated Doyou-no-Ushi-no-Hi a year. But the day of summer season is famous to eat eel. Why people eat eel on the day? It is said that the Japanese custom of eating eel during the hot summer months was started by a well-known scholar in the Edo-period, Gennai Hiraga, famous for the introduction to Japan of the erekiteru, or electrostatic generator. Apparently, he saved an eel restaurant that had been experiencing declining sales during summer by putting up a flyer saying “The Midsummer Day of the Ox Eel Day” in front of the restaurant. 46% of Japanese consumed eel on the day in 2015 With 46%, 10 points decreased from ten years ago, and the ratio of person who ate an eel in the day of the Ox of the dog days of the last year fell below half because of the remarkable rise of the price of eel. The ratio is less than the one who consumed rolled sushi on Setubun or the last day of winter, according to the public opinion poll that NHK conducted.
”Pokemon Go” Feaver
Pokemon Go, a smartphone game that arrived last Friday, has brought about excitement and anxiety over this new style of gaming. People playing the game on their smartphone are getting a social phenomenon. While there are hopes that the game will bring positive economic effects, some are worried about people getting into trouble because they are absorbed in using smartphones while walking. Actually in other countries, some people died of falling from the cliff or intruded in prohibited area. Last night, I downloaded the game and tried it in order to study the nature of the game. The game uses many smartphone functions, including map applications, GPS and camera, to create an experience that makes it seem like players are in the real world. This technology is called augmented reality(拡張現実). The game has many functions including hunting and fighting. The most basic function is to capture the Pokemon creatures which are indicated their existing location on the map. These places are called Pokestop or Pokemon stop. I found many Pokestop such as temples, shrines and parks near my house. The game seems to have many positive possibilities, but both players and the managing company of Pokemon needs to have morals. *The picture is a Pokestop near my house
My elder son now lives in Shizuoka city with his wife, Ayano. From July 9, I took two days trip visiting my son’s house and also many sightseeing spots in the city. Shizuoka City is located in the middle between Tokyo and Nagoya and the population is about 700,000. It is about 170 km from my house in Yokohama and it takes about 2.5 hours by car . Unfortunately, it had much rain and it was cold on July 9 due to the influence of a typhoon. Before visiting my son’s house, we visited Toro Ruins “登呂遺跡” and learned the 1st century, Yayoi-Era’s life in the Toro museum which is built adjacent to the ruin.We visited my son’s house at noon and were given a delicious meal cooked by Ayano. We had a pleasant time at noon. Before having evening dinner with Atushi and Ayano, my wife and I visited Shizuoka Sengen shrine “静岡浅間神社”, Sunpu Castle ”駿府城” and Rinzai-ji temple “臨済寺”. After we had a dinner at Totoya restaurant which served several delicious local fishes, we stayed at Hotel Associa near JR Shizuoka station. On July 10, It was a fine weather after the typhoon has blown over. Mt Fiji could been seen in my hotel room. As soon as having early breakfast in the hotel, we visited Nihondaira “日本平”, Kunouzan Tosho-gu “久能山東照宮”, and Miho no Matsubara “美保の松原”. I thanked my son and Ayano for their hospitality. I really enjoyed the warmhearted hospitality and good meals. I also enjoyed beautiful nature, wisdom of ancestors, and the elaborate arts of craftsmen of the past. Ref. 家康公の遺訓 ”Lord Ieyasu’s teachings” 人の一生は重荷を負うて遠き道を行くがごとし。急ぐべからず。 不自由を常と思えば不足なし。こころに望みおこらば困窮したる時を思い出すべし。 堪忍は無事長久の基、いかりは敵と思え。 勝つ事ばかり知りて、負くること知らざれば害その身にいたる。 おのれを責めて人をせむるな。 及ばざるは過ぎたるよりまされり。 Life is a journey with a burden. Do not hurry up. If you regard inconvenience as normal situation, you will never feel inconvenient. When desires appear in your mind, recall your distresses in the past. Patience is the foundation of everlasting safety. Regard anger as the enemy. If you know not losing but only winning, you should pay for it. Blame not others but yourself. Shortage is better than excess.
Surprising Brexit( British Exit) and Japan’s Future
The British public’s decision to leave the European Union hit a shock through Japan, causing a sharp rise in the yen’s exchange rate and a fall in stock prices. It is possible that the shock will spread to small factories that depend on exports and have an effect on demand for European travel. I am concerned for the future. Nationalism and emigrant exclusion will increase and these trend will cause the friction of international economy and racism. Under the circumstances, Japan should shift to activate domestic industry from gaining profit from outside countries. Japanese government needs to accelerate its deregulation measures to stimulate the Japanese domestic economy. Personally, introduction of US companies such as Uber and Airbnb should be adapted. And national promotion of automatic driving car and next generation energy such as hydrogen, quake proofing of infrastructure against big earthquakes might be the solutions of activation in the domestic industry. The pic is from the internet and the Sun’s article is interesting. Later, Buckingham Palace has complained to the press watchdog over the Sun newspaper’s article claiming the Queen backed “Brexit” from the European Union.
A Summer Cold is not Cured Easily
A Summer Cold is not Cured Easily I caught a slight summer cold. Every year in this season, I suffer from a summer cold . The symptoms of a cold are sore throat, stomach pain, and languor. In order to recover from a cold, I usually practice these things: 1. to take enough sleeping hours and to keep warm in order to enhance my immune system 2. to drink a lot of water to soothe sore throat 3. to gargle and to wash hands to wash away some viruses related to summer cold I have practiced the above things but the symptoms of cold relapse and it is difficult to completely recover . In old times, I took cold medicines but these days I make an effort to recover using my natural means.
It’s a Small World!
I have had several surprising encounters, especially after I became 40 years old. The other day, I met my senior of my company at my mother’s nursing home by chance. What a coincidence! His mother also stayed there for several years. Later I met him at a sushi restaurant and exchanged the information like the service qualities of the nursing home . Last year, my elder son got married. I once met at a business meeting the father of my daughter-in-law. It was about 20 year’s ago. The father of my elder son’s friend is my senior of my company and I know him very well. Last year I met the son and found that he and his father was not similar in looks. An acquaintance of my wife invited her and me to former sister’s concert in her house and she was my university’s classmate. The last time I met her was 40 years ago. The mother of my younger son’s friend was my junior high school classmate in Tokyo. My younger son often played with two friends near my house during summer. One of his friends is a Japanese Canadian. One day, when I took them to a swimming pool, I greeted his mother and found out that his mother was my classmate. Those happenings make me feel that the world is small. The Internet also connects old dear acquaintances. Last month, I received an e-mail from Arthur in LA. He was my English teacher about 20 years ago. He came across my site and sent me a letter. He gave me a praise of my site. Thank you Arthur. I was delighted to receive your letter. Do you remember visiting my house and guiding you near the neighborhood of my house ?
Nursing Home of My Mother
After my mother was discharged from Kanto Rousai Hospital, she entered a nursing home near my house, this is because she lost a confidence to live by herself. Certainly her legs become weak and I’m worried about her self-sustenance life. She needs to be taken care of her daily life. It’s very sad for me to send her to the nursing home, but it’s a good chance for her to spend the rest of her life happily.The nursing home provides not only care services including night inspection every 4 hours from 6 pm but also meals, washing clothes, changing linens, having many recreation activities like painting, physical exercises. In addition, the nursing home is very near my house. It only takes about 10 min by car so I can go there frequently. Today I took my mother to my home and she had a chance to select her summer clothes and play her grand piano. I promised her to take her to my home twice a month. === Although she was discharged, her condition is not normal. The value of CRP is still high, it means she is still fighting against a certain inflammation which, for now, is not certain which part of her body is affected, and because of this she tends to get tired easily. Rheumatism is possible disease because of her symptom of swelling knees and ankles of legs and arms. In order to find the cause of the disease, I’ll continue to take her to the hospital which has special department of rheumatism. The Kanto Rousai hospital wrote a medical referral letter to The Ida Hospital. I’m also concerned about her dementia. Most of dementia is Alzheimer-type. Her recognition problem stated from this year and and seems to worsen since her confinement in the hospital in May. I hope her recognition problem is temporally caused by the change of her life circumstances and she will recover her recognition soon.
My Mother’s Hospital Stay
My mother’s hospital stay My mother and I went to Izu for four day trip from April 28. Second day in the morning my mother complained about her body pain. So we went back to home in Yokohama earlier than schedule and took her Takata Chuo Hospital which is always used as our home doctor and explained the condition to the doctor. The internist of the hospital told us “This kind of disease was suitable to be seen by a surgeon doctor, but he would not attend until next Saturday.” So my mother had to wait until Saturday. However I found that her left leg was swellen when she applied a pain-killer ointment. I was surprised and I searched hospitals which is operated on holidays and went to Kanto Rousai Hospital. It was on May 4 – Greenery Day . Her left leg was checked using blood test, X-ray and MRI. The doctor immediately said she should be hospitalized. The disease name could be Cellulitis (蜂窩織炎), the doctor said. Her treatment was mainly drip-feed, cooled her left leg and relaxed. This treatment lasted for five days and the swelling was reduced. But her CRP value which is related inflammation of blood was still high. *CRP : c-reactive protein which indicates the reaction of inflammation in one’s body : Normal value is less than 0.3. If the value is more than 10, It indicates critical and questioned some disease such as pneumonia, tumor, joint rheumatism and cancer. The doctor called me and said that her disease might be rheumatism and change the treatment to just taking medicine. And also checked her leg-joint liquid examination, circulation of blood caused by economy syndrome by a internist , skin disease by a dermatology doctor, and MRI re-check by a Rheumatism special doctor. *rheumatism is a deficiency of immune sysytem Alone with these checks , her blood test was conducted by a different institute. But the result is not received until now. Yesterday, I met the main doctor and asked him to find out her disease in haste and treat her as outpatient care. Her condition looked already normal on the surface and she want to be discharged. She also want to enter a care house because she loose her confidence to stand on her two feet. I hope she will be discharged soon after her disease name was confirmed as rheumatism. Of course she need to start the treatment , but I want her enjoy her life in the paid care house. A view from Kanto rousai Hospital
Tikura and Nojima-zaki (南総千倉＆野島崎)
Tikura and Nojima-zaki (南総千倉＆野島崎) My wife and I went to Tikura and Nozima-zaki from May 8 to 9. This area is famous for its fishing ports and flower firms. After visiting to see my mother in Kantou Rousai Hospital at 10:00 am, we went to Tikura and visited the road station ( “Mithi-no-eki” ) named “Shiokaze Ookoku” . We also visited a flower firm, but spring flowers were almost sold and the field became partial flower garden. After that, we went to Nojimazaki or Nojima cape and went up the light house and enjoyed beautiful ocean panorama. We arrived at the Toslove Tateyama Hotel at 4:30 pm and had a pleasant time with hot spring bath, dinner of local fish and vegetables, and a nice accommodation.
Completion of My House Painting
Completion of My House Painting The house painting was finished as scheduled. The painting started on April 19 and ended on May 2. It took 13 days in total. In order to finish as scheduled, the painters had worked even in rain. When it rained, they painted the ceilings of eaves. The painting company gave me a CD that have more than 100 pictures of the painting process after the completion. I clearly understood how they worked.
Pic1: A workman is spraying jet-water to remove the dust and moss on the roof.
Pic2: The gutter becomes dirty with soil and dead leaves.
Pic3: The wall , gutter, gutter drain pipes, shutter, ornament board(gray) were painted beautifully.
Paint material : roof ヤマMシリコン（弱溶剤形二液アクリルシリコン）セピア
wall セラMシリコンⅢ COLOR :KP-310 白に近いクリーム色 ｂｙ 関西ペイント
PIc4-Pic5 : Allover of my house
Yanaka(谷中) and Sendagi(千駄木)
Yanaka(谷中) and Sendagi(千駄木) 2016.3.5 I walked around Yanaka and Sendagi area which are located about ６ km north from Tokyo station. Before walking , I participated in the annual meeting of OB co-workers who worked at the Ginza(銀座）office of Taisei Corporation. 23 people attended the meeting and the half of then were over 70 years old. But they looked younger than their age. On the way to meeting, I saw some construction sites in Ginza such as Ginza 6 Chome Building and Ginza Tokyu Plaza. 1)谷中銀座 Yanaka shopping street The street is famous to keep retro atmosphere of Showa era. The stairs named “Yuuyake Dandan” in the entrance of the Yanaka shopping street is also famous to see a beautiful sunset. Please click pic-2 to enlarge and you will see many people in the street which can be seen in the center of the picture. Maybe more than half of people seemed to be foreigners from Asia. 2)旧安田楠雄邸 former Kusuo Yasuda Residence in Sendagi I visited at the former Kusuo Yasuda Residence which is designated as a cultural asset by Tokyo metropolitan government. But I couldn’t enter the house because the opening time was until 3 pm. ３）天王寺 Tennouji temple On the way back to the Nippori station, I visited Tennouji temple and worshiped at my grand father and grand mother’s grave.
pic 1 : Ginza Tokyu Plaza pic 2:Yuuyake Dandan pic 3:Yanaka shopping street pic 4:former Kusuo Yasuda Residence pic 5:Yanaka sakura street pic 6: Tenouji temple
箱根石仏 Moto-Hakone Stone Buddhas
箱根石仏 Moto-Hakone Stone Buddhas In the morning , I walked around and near the hotel for about one and half hours and saw many historical stone Buddhas alone the walking pass. These stone monuments are designated as Japan’s important culture assets. Once the pass was the old main streets linked Kamakura and Kyoto and these sculptures were made at Kamakura Era in the 12th-14th century. 恩賜箱根公園 Onshi-Hakone-Koen Park The park was once the emperor Meiji’s villa. The building was collapsed by the Kanto big earth quake and the north-Izu earthquake. IN 1959, the building and garden were replicated. Two years ago, I visited there, but I couldn’t see the beautiful Mt. Fuji. Today is a lucky day. I could see not only beautiful Mt. Fuji but also many outer ring mountains alone the Lake Asi clearly from this park. The Asi lake was a volcanic crater.
Early spring flower viewing and A Nice Accommodation
I went to Tateyaka in Chiba prefecture with my wife to stay the new hotel which is managed by the health insurance union. The hotel was opened just 2 months ago and very clean and stylish. So the hotel has become very popular and it is difficult to make a reservation especially on weekends. Fortunately I found a other person’s cancel booking by chance and was able to make a reservation. The hotel was certainly nice with facility, foods and hospitality. The location of the hotel was also nice to visit many sightseeing spots. There are many flower parks and marine parks near there. This time l visited The Tateyama Family Park and The Tateyama Aloha Garden to see some early spring flowers. Tateyama city(館山市） Tateyama city is located at the tip of Boso peninsula and it takes two hours from Yokohama using the highway through under the sea called Tokyo Bay Aqua Line. The place is famous as the rich nature by the influence of a warm sea current called Kuroshio. The place was once a castle town controlled by Satomi family. There are many historical monuments such as Tateyama Castles and temples. The population is about 50,000.
4K-TV what’s 4K？ 4K-TV is the TV which has about 4000 pixels in horizontal line and four times higher resolution than full high vision TV. Ref. The 4K TV has 8 million pixels while high resolution TV has 2 million pixels. ★Pros of 4K 1.Screen is clearer 2.Dark scene is brighter 3.Safe to watch at close range. 4.Can stimulate one’s brain while watching because the graphics looks so real. ★Cons of 4K 1.Price is higher compared to other brands. 2.Only minimal number of TV programs which are used 4K pixels. 3.You need a larger TV size if you want to enjoy 4K-TV.
Setsubun(節分） And Its Related Customs
Setsubun(節分） And Its Related Traditon Setsubun is a traditional ceremony to word off evil and to invite luck to one’s home. People throw roasted beans to drive away demons while chanting “Oniwa-soto, Fukuwa-uti”, meaning “Out with demons! In with good luck!’ It is customary to eat the same number of beans as their age. Why the day called “Setsubun(節分）”？ Setsubun usually falls on February 3 . It literally means to divide winter and spring. The day was the last day of winter. In old times, the day was the last day of the year or New Year’s Eve. Why do people eat same number of roasted beans as their age? Beans roasted by fire are said to have a power to expel evils. And people believed that eating the beans is to invite health in their body. They wish luck for the coming year while eating . Why do Japanese eat Eho-maki(恵方巻き）？ This tradition among Japanese is not old. The custom started Maybe 20 years ago. This susi roll usually consume facing the lucky direction to invite luck on Setsubun. This year’s lucky direction was south- south- east. This habit is said that nori or dried seaweed makers set in order to increase their sales.
My Town’s New Year 2016
My Town Yokohama’s New Year 2016 In order to greet the New Year, I cleaned my house. After that, I decorated the gate with pine branches and hang new year decorations which is like Christmas wreath, on the door. Early in the New Year, I visited shrines and temples dedicated to these dieties in order to pray for prosperity and happiness.
Izu Villa Renovation
Izu Villa Renovation My father built this villa 36 years ago. As the time went by, the house became old and needed renovation such as floors and the sinks. Of course the walls of the house had been painted three times until now. This time, I decided to renovate inside the house such as kitchen and living room floor. The budget was limited, so I negotiated with the contractor for the cost of repair part of the rooms including materials . By the end of last December, the renovation was finished.