通訳案内士試験道場 地理・歴史・一般常識・通訳案内実務ブログ
  • 15May
    • オリンピック費用ランキング

      オリンピック費用ランキング 1位:北京2008 3兆1700億円 1位:ロンドン2012 3兆1700億円 3位:バルセロナ1992 1兆1900億円 4位:アテネオリンピック2004 1兆1100億 5位:東京1964 1兆円 6位:ソウル1988 6300億 7位:アトランタ1996 5500億円 8位:シドニー2000 4000億円 9位:ロサンゼルス1984 790億円 東京Olympic(第32回)の費用 経済効果の予想 1964東京オリンピックの翌年に不況 立候補時3300億円 →招致時7300億円 20130908 3兆円 20130907 →1兆8000億円(20151219) →1兆3500億円(20191220) →32兆円 20191211 →3兆円 GDP変化ランキング開催2年前と2年後を比較 上昇 下降 横ばい 1 北京 2008 上下平平 1 北京 ロサンゼルス 北京 シドニー 2 ソウル 1988 平平下上 1 ロサンゼルス アテネ ソウル アトランタ 3 ロサンゼルス 1984 平上下上 3 ソウル ロンドン バルセロナ 4 シドニー 2000 下下下上 4 アテネ リオ 5 アテネ 2004 上下下上 5 アトランタ 5 アトランタ 1996 下上上平 6 シドニー 5 バルセロナ 1992 下下下上 7 ロンドン 8 ロンドン 2012 上上上上 8 バルセロナ 9 リオ 2016 下平上上 8 リオ

    • 観光立国になるべきか

      070509 観光立国になるべきかIn 2008, Ministry of Tourism affairs started promoting tourism-oriented country.In a case of crises such as this pandemic we are facing now, foreign tourists are extraordinary short. Venetia resides in Kyoto; this British lady used to be a traveler and found Japan to be her permanent place to reside. We need to advertise the charm of this country to attract more immigrants.An Israelite traveler did not want to approach Fukushima; we drove by Yamagata to come back to Tokyo. It is difficult for a foreigner to get accurate information; everyone wants safety. Tourism and ecology are two wheels to move on. I doubt that ministries of different affairs have meetings together. Not too many politicians work for their people; many have favoritism. Opposition party pointed that Shinzo Abe distributed facial masks to give an advantage to his favorite company. In a case of an election, we must vote for a politician who sees the people first.Most politicians are narrow minded; they do not work on a strategy of 30 years later. It was predictable that population would decrease in the future. Raising consumption tax was missing the mark; it does not help population to increase. When a worker leaves her office for a child-care, her co-workers mend up her absence. Single workers are so exhausted that little energy is left to find her/his spouse. Married have better working conditions, single workers are neglected.From now on, it will be more difficult to obtain food.White colors have more income compared to farmers. An insurance company should have better insurance to cover natural disasters.Russia almost stopped exporting food to protect its people from the pandemic.Mt. Everest will lose its snow by global warming.Consequently, the River Indus and the R. Huang will have water shortage.As a result, irrigation systems will have water shortage.China and India, two countries of the largest population, cannot harvest crops.In the beginning of February, a swarm of locusts broke out in the eastern Africa. Warming in Indian Ocean caused much rain to deserts in the eastern Africa. The locusts devoured crops in Kenya, Somalia, Ethiopia, Tanzania, Sudan increasing in numbers to 200 trillion. They move toward to India and Pakistan by Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Oman, Iran. On March 9, China delivered chemicals to Pakistan. The life length of a locust is 3 months; locusts move 100 km a day.C)アフリカ東部で発生した(2/4)バッタの大群はケニヤ、ソマリア、エチオピア(GDPの3割)、タンザニア、南スーダンを経てサウジアラビア、イエメン、オマーン、イランの農作物を食い荒らしインド、パキスタンに達した。3/9中国はパキスタンへ殺虫剤を届けた原因:インド洋西部の海水温上昇でアフリカ大陸の砂漠に大量の雨 バッタの寿命は3ヶ月200兆匹Sauries used to be soul food of Japan. Cheap sauries were plenty. Foreign ships fish sauries around the territorial waters. When I happen to see sauries in grocery store, they are too expensive to buy. China, the largest population, gather as much as they can to feed their own people.Temporary visitors do not constantly come to Japan. Foreigners travel to find Japanese charm. Immigrants are long term resources of this nation.Note of the lecture今年のインバウンド伸び率No1の高松空港ストップ 政府は国内旅行から推進 中華圏からの回復は早い 欧米遅れる 若者145人中7割が終息後に訪日を希望 直行便 安近短 欧米の死者数は多い 世界恐慌以上の景気悪化 ib客が地方に戻るかは航路維持がキー 伸び盛りだったところは可能性高い 3年後のインバウンドドバイ万博2020スシローロボット回転寿司を出店 越後妻有(ツマリ)トリエンナーレ 新今宮 (シンイマリ)ほしのや 奈良監獄ほてる 団体客よりFITの方が単価高い ロボホンロボットガイド 観光庁 過疎化に産業をもたらす マニフェスト選挙 旅行消費アップのためにおもてなし 1.無料Wi-Fi、 2.アナログ集客 ピクトグラム 音声翻訳端末ポケトーク 検索エンジンにかかりやすい 

  • 26Apr
    • 北陸の過疎地をインバウンドで盛り立てる方法

      北陸の過疎地をインバウンドで盛り立てる方法The Strategy to Activate Depopulated Places in Hokuriku by Inbound TourismSun. Feb. 9, 2020Niigata:Take care of crested ibises in Sado Island. Try basin canoe. Listen to Sado-okesa, a folk song. Visit Sado Gold Mine to experience washing gold sand. Watch “Noh” in a Norakudo theater.Toyama:Join Owara Bon-Dance. Practice Shamisen, a Japanese violin. Learn how to make Trout Sushi. Help fishermen to fish squids and shrimps. Snowball fighting is fun. Make a snowman or a snow hut.Ishikawa:Make Kutani china containers and Wajima japan containers.Fukui:Try to be a Buddhist priest in Eihei-Temple. Try Bungee jumps in Tojinbo cliff.Ishikawa:Visit a morning market in Wajima; it is one of the most famous morning markets in Japan.Ninja Pilgrimage:This is a computer game software. Find hidden Ninjas and gain points. They hide all over Hokuriku: he may appear in a morning market or very solitary place such as a mountain cave.

    • Chinese Culture which Influenced Japan Most

      Chinese Culture which Influenced Japan MostIn the early stage of her history, Japan began her relationship with our neighbor China. Learning from the advanced culture was to accept Buddhism.The statistics in 2017 tells that about 77,000 Buddhist temples exist in Japan. It is said that Kyoto has 1,700 temples. Many of the temples surround city of Kyoto based on the idea of Fusui 風水; their purpose was to protect the capital city from evils.Kagoshima鹿児島Visit Ganjin Memorial Museum in Bonotsu坊津 where Chinese priest, Ganjin鑑真, arrived. His 1st challenge to travel to Japan began in 742; he tried 5 times total, all of them turned into failures. In 753, he accidentally sailed to Bonotsu; it was his 6th trial.Shikoku四国Zentsu Temple善通寺 in Kagawa is a birthplace of Kukai空海. After coming back from China唐, he made a new sect of Buddhism called Shingonshu真言宗.Ohenro Pilgrimageお遍路 is popular among Japanese. Kukai walked through coasts of Shikoku Island for Buddhism ascetic practice. Many Japanese walk after Kukai even now; because Kukai went counterclockwise, present travelers go clockwise, hoping to encounter Kukai on their way.Kyoto京都Visit Tenryu temple天龍安寺 in Mt. Arashi.嵐山 Military Commander, Ashikaga Takauji,足利尊氏 tried to build a temple to commemorate deceased Emperor Godaigo.後醍醐天皇 Muso,夢窓疎石 being a priest and a businessman, sent a merchant ship to trade with Gen. He earned necessary expense to build a memorial temple for Emperor Godaigo.Nara奈良Visit Nara to see Huge Buddha Figure, 14 meters high, about the same as a building of 4 stories. Ganjin’s 1st disciples were Emperor and Empress聖武天皇と光明皇后. Being a fervent Buddhist, Emperor Shomu governed his nation as a Buddhist spreading Buddhism all over Japan, mainly to noble people. 唐招提寺Toshodai is a temple Ganjin constructed for 戒律; it has his figure.Kanagawa神奈川In 1253, Hojo Tokiyori, 北条時頼the 5th governor of Kamakura, opened Kencho temple.建長寺 He was the 1st disciple of Rankei, a Chinese priest.蘭渓道隆In 1282, the 8th governor, Hojo Tokimune, 北条時宗opened Engaku temple 円覚寺to commemorate defeated warriors of Gen. Hojo Tokimune was the 1st disciple of Mugakusogen, a Chinese priest. 夢窓疎石In 1252, 500 years after the completion of Buddhist Figure in Nara, they began constructing one in Kamakura. It is said that So-sen, 宋銭Chinese coins, were imported, melted, and molded into the figure.

    • 明治維新のプラス面とマイナス面

      明治維新のプラス面とマイナス面 Sun. Jan. 26, 2020Advantages and disadvantages Meiji Revolution broughtAdvantages:1.Economic Prosperity: Withdrawal of Tokugawa caused Emperor’s authority; it enabled Japan to compete with western countries. This was economic and technological competition. In developing countries, they have just agriculture as their primary products. We aimed to have heavy industry, such as Yawata Iron Factory in Fukuoka, to catch up with western countries.2.Japan was not occupied by other countries. Continuous wars inside of Japan could have invited European occupation just as China was divided after Nisshin War.Disadvantages:1. Samurai warriors revolted against Meiji Government: Meiji government tried to abolish identity as Samurai. Command to abolish swords “Haito-rei”, shattered samurais’ pride. In Edo era, samurais were respected, valuable, and admirable.2. Invasion of Asian countries: They began invading other Asian countries just as Europeans had colonies in Asia and Africa.3. Globalization causes social symptoms which we did not have before such as stokers, violent driving and children abuse. Symptoms in the west likely to occur in Japan decades later.4. Pollution: A member of Parliament, Tanaka Shozo protested against Government and the owner of Ashio copper mine of the pollution.Where to take guests:Josiah Conder, a British architect, designed the Iwasaki’s mansion, St. Nicholas Church and “Rokumeikan” a dancing hall. Rokumeikan does not exist today, however.Josiah Conder also lectured in Tokyo University and equipped Japanese architect students. One of his students was Tatsuno Kingo who designed Head Office of National Ban, Tokyo Station Building, , Seishin Women’s University, Mitsubishi Office Building, and the Furukawa’s mansion.Katayama Tokuma, another student of Conder, designed Akasaka Palace, the State Guest House.

    • 信州・飛騨の古い町並み Merchant Towns of Middle Ages

      信州・飛騨の古い町並み Merchant Towns of Middle AgesSun. Jan. 26, 2020NaganoChikuma City is a merchant town where Zenko temple pilgrims stayed. It’s also a capital city of Nagano.Stay in Nozawa hot spring and visit Iiyama. Uesugi Kenshin, a warrior of Middle Ages in Niigata, built a castle in Iiyama to attack Nagano. Cherries begin to bloom from middle of April.Visit Togakushi Shrine and Ninja museum “Karakuri-Yashiki”, Ninja Trick Mansion.Stay in Shibu hot spring and watch wild monkeys.Katsushika Hokusai temporarily resided in town of Obuse. A museum has his pictures. Obuse is known for beautiful gardens. There are about 130 house gardens guests can visit.Komoro castle has a zoo. Harvest apples. Make miso and buckwheat noodles. Komoro is famous for cherry blossoms, too.Visit town of Saku to try carps. There are many river fish restaurants in Saku.GifuGunjo-Hachiman is a castle town. Join Gunjo-dance: they dance 32 times from July to September.Visit World Heritage of Shirakawa. This hands-looking architecture is about 15 meters high. The ancient government of Nara period obligated people to pay tax or labor for construction. Going to Nara to construct huge buildings, they were skilled to build huge houses home.Old-fashioned town of Takayama has morning markets every day. The market is one of the 3 most popular Japanese markets.In Edo era, the government ran business in this city to earn income beside tax. (An easy example is that Charles in Britain runs a company called Dutchy Originals.) Cultural important properties are: “Kusakabe-Mingeikan” is a town house of Edo era. Watch “the Yoshinos’ residence built in 1907. Sanmachi in Takayama has sake brewery buildings built in Edo era. (These functioned also as banks in Edo era.)Festivals are held in April and October; the purpose of the splendorous carnival is to set farmers’ eyes off revolving against merchants.

    • ファストファッション

      ファストファッションAdvantages:1. Cheap:2. Disposable: do not feel guilty about断捨離danshari3. Global: Not too many people wear traditional costumes on regular basis. Used cloths are sent to developing countries. Japanese used clothes are popular in South America.Disadvantages:1. A stranger wears a t-shirt of the same design:2. Purchase more than needed: 近藤まりKondo Mari teaches how to put away unnecessary things; she is popular in America3. Increase of CO2: I used to work for a trading company to deal with fast-fashion. Let’s think of procedure to make a t-shirt. The following is a cotton production ranking: 1st China, 2nd India, 3rd U.S.A. Farmers harvest cottons. Workers weave threads into cloths and makes t-shirts by sawing machines. The fashion company had American designers. Sawing facilities in Cambodia imported labels from Indonesia; completed t-shirts were exported to Japan. A t-shirt is traveling the world around twice or third times.4. Westernized, neglect of own patriotism: Japanese women pay tuition to learn how to put kimono on. We are so westernized that we don’t know how to wear our costumes.5. Human rights of developing countries: A fashion journalist in New York shares her story. She visited countries that exported clothes to America. She was in Cambodia. When her tuk-tuk taxi passed a factory, she saw a truck that were packed with many women. “Where are they heading?”, she asked the taxi driver. He replied, “They are heading to a facility to saw clothes you’re wearing.” She was wearing H&M. According to “In These Times”, 700,000 laborers work for sawing facilities; 80% of the export are clothes. 43.2% of sawing laborers are anemic. Their average food expense is \1,000 per a week. If they cannot work from sickness, they pay fines. During labor hours, many workers faint, maybe they overwork or have nutrition shortage.Most news report on advanced countries, not developing countries. 80% live in developing countries. ダイソー児童労働Things in a dollar shop is cheap; in developing countries, children who do not go to school are laborers. 欧米諸国が日本に課した高い関税、弱者からの搾取 舶来品は昔の話Let us purchase “fair traded” goods. Fare traded goods are not just clothes, but also things we buy in grocery stores such as coffee and soap. There is a Japanese saying: Buy cheaply, lose money. Socks, shoes and underwear are popular souvenirs of inbound tourists. I took American girls to Asakusa. They were indifferent to temple buildings, they were excited to find a trunks shop, however. All trunks had different designs; every girl bought trunks for her boyfriend. Japanese socks and shoes have more designs compared to the west.

    • 外国人に知られているアニメ作品三点とその舞台となった場所

      一般④ 外国人に知られているアニメ作品三点とその舞台となった場所In Japan, anime culture has become an indispensable part of our society. Many companies use anime characters in the advertising or even create their own anime characters or mascots as a way to revitalize their region. So it is very easy to find statues or landmarks and sites dedicated to the anime culture and their creators. I would like to introduce three anime works and related spots so called pilgrimage sites which are popular to foreign visitors.1. Token Ranbu 刀剣乱舞This anime started as an online web browser game by Nintendo in 2015. Featuring character growing simulation system as a theme. Extremely good looking boys that personify japanese legendary swords from actual history interact each other defeating enemies in historical battlefields. Since the launch anthropomorphized swords have attracted the hearts of people from around the world. They turned in to two T.V anime series, mangas, musical performance and even a new word. Recently, the word Toujoshi, (刀女子)which directly means “sword girl,” fangirls of swords has appeared in Japan. Thanks to this tendency some museums like Kunozan Tosho Temple(久能山東照寺)was able to raise enough money by crowdfunding to renovate their 10 treasure swords. Or another interesting incident is that Tokugawa Museum in Mito has found a legendary sword destroyed by fire according to the information transmitted.Legendary swords are treasured in all over Japan in shrines and temples, castles with interesting episodes of historical daimyo owners. Tokyo Metropolitan Museum has good collection, too.2. NarutoThis is a manga appeared in Weekly Shonen Jump in 1999 and is an epic ninja adventure that became a global phenomenon. For those who loved Dragon Ball, this series turned out to be candidate successor. This work was broadcasted in more than 80 countries so far andNaruto was once erected as one of 100 most respected japanese as an only non-real image in Newsweek 2006. Pilgrimage place is Naruto & Bokuto Shinobi-ZATO an animation athletics park in Awajishima, Hyogo Prefectures.3. PokémonPokémon or Pocket Monsters started as a game soft for Game Boy handheld system in 1996 from Nintendo. Since then it has gone on to become the highest-grossing media franchise of all time. From card games to wrapping of jumbo jets for japanese aircraft firms.Pilgrimage places for Pokémon are west exit of Shinjuku station, Akihabara station, Kinshicho station, Nakano station and Ikebukuro station. All stations popular for japanese sub culture. Also there are 12 Pokémon Centers all over japan which specialize Pokémon goods. In Tokyo, at historical department store Takashimaya or Tokyo Sky Tree has Pokémon Center and is always very crowded with foreign visitors.

    • 環境問題に関するツアー   

      環境問題に関するツアー Koizumi was inaugurated to Ministry of Ecology on September 11, 2019.国連演説でセクシー発言On September 23, 2019, he made a speech in United Nations. Audience was upset as he referred to “sexy ecology.”絶句Cop25 was held in Spain on December 6, 2019. Minister of Ecology was asked to submit specific plan to reduce CO2. He could not say a word. 《Reduce CO2》European countries are more advanced in reducing CO2.Cycling roads are equipped.Round-abouts are equipped instead of traffic signals.All Israelian households have solar panels.千葉県市原市This city creates power by burning disposables. This reduces CO2. Sweden imports disposables to create power.《Japanese original methods》Please take a ferry to come to Japan. In this tour, we do not take airplanes, as we imitate Greta in Sweden. One person discharges 56.8kg CO2 by one-way flight from Haneda to Osaka.青森県むつ市This city promotes recycled fertilizer. Bring DRIED food wastes to a recycle facility and bring back fertilizer. Onion, bamboo, corns skins, shells, shrimps, crabs, beef, pork, chicken bones, cooking oil, toothpick, papers, cigarettes cannot be disposed.「東京大和呉服橋ビル写真」Plants cover this building and prevent it from heat. A green building reduces power and CO2. SHAPE  \* MERGEFORMAT この写真 の作成者 不明な作成者 は CC BY-SA のライセンスを許諾されています 香川県金刀比羅宮 This is a bad example. When I visited this shrine, I was amazed to find numerous vending machines. A data shows there are 5 million vending machines in Japan. They need 5,000,000kw power. Fukushima nuclear facility has 6 plants to create 4,690,000kw power that equals to the power of all vending machines in Japan. When we go to convenience shops or coffee shops, too many vending machines are not needed.   《Kinds of waterpower》流れ込み式:This method generates power by a running stream.調整池式:This method generates power by water falling from a pond. The used water goes to a stream.揚水式:Construct ponds on a mountain and ponds down the mountain. Construct a powerplant between them. Generate power by falling water from a pond. Pump up the used water from a lower pond to the upper when power is not needed.兵庫県朝来市奥多々良(たたら)木(き)水力発電所(揚水式)最大出力This power plant generates 1,932,000kw electricity equals to annual power by 644 households.《Kinds of geothermal power》Heated stream exists 1000~3000meters underground; this liquid is heated by magmaフラッシュ発電:In this case, the liquid is more than 200C degrees. Separate it into steam and heated liquid. Return the liquid back to the earth. The steam turns turbines.温泉バイナリー発電:In this case, the liquid is more than 80C degrees. Separate it into steam and heated liquid. Return the liquid back to the earth. The steam turns turbines.The used water is lukewarm enough to take a bath.Geothermal Power Plant: According to a survey in 2017, there are 65 working power plants of more than 10kwh ability. The most powerful facility is in Oita (大分県九重町);大分県九重町八丁原発電所フラッシュ発電 This power plant has 3 facilities. One has the ability of 55,000kw; it equals to annual power of 18 households.《Reference》愛媛県佐田岬半島せと風の丘パーク:This park has a nice view of a wind power plant, the ocean and the peninsula.  One wind power facility is more than 100m high, that is as high as a 30- story building. A diameter of blades is 74m; it is as large as a Boing 777. The higher a facility becomes, the more wind it gets. One can create 2,930,000kwh; it equals to annual power of 813 households. It is not windy always; 20% of calculation is considered as available power.《用語説明》延長コード1500wまでw:瞬時に使われる電気の大きさ1Kw=1000wKwh(キロワット時): Average annual power of one household 3,000kw

  • 14Apr
    • Three castle towns in the Tohoku regions

      Three castle towns in the Tohoku regions A castle town refers to a town centering the castle of a feudal lord. The nearest places of the lord’s residence are for samurai warriors, while the places far away from the lord’s residence are for merchants.Kakunodate in Akita still remains such traditional castle town. Old samurai mansions surrounded by black walls standing along the wide street and weeping cherry blossoms are icons of Kakunodate. Visitors could also feel something elegant similar to Kyoto. It is no wonder, because a lord of the Satake clan married a daughter of a noble court, who brought Kyoto culture with cherry blossom saplings. Since then the culture have developed and the cherry blossoms have grown. That’s why Kakunodate is called Kyoto in the Tohoku region.One of the existing old houses is open to the public as the museum related to the samurai warriors, in which visitors can wear a suit of armor and learn about Onoda Naotake, who was copied the illustration of the first edition of Kaitaishinsho translated into Japanese based on Anatomische Tabellen. The area was also the shooting sites for two Japanese films including “ The Twilight Samurai “. There is another famous cherry blossom viewing spot is at the banks of the Hinokinai River where beautiful scenery stretches two kilometers from the end of April to the early of May. Kaba zaiku craft is specialty of the town, which originally started as side jobs for low ranked samurai warriors. It is characterized by the black lustrous surface made of bark of wild cherry trees. The JR Resort Shirakami runs between Akita and Aomori prefectures. Passengers can enjoy landscape of the Sea of Japan, local food, and traditional music: “Tsugaru Shamisen”. It is a pleasant transportation heading for Hirosaki form Akita. The Hirosaki castle is one of major sightseeing spots, which is well known for beautiful scenery of cherry blossoms. It has three-storied castle tower that was reconstructed almost two hundred years later the original one was burned down due to the fire caused by the lighting in 1627. Why did it take so long to rebuild it? It was common that creating the tall castle tower was regarded as rebellion against the government, so appropriate reasons were needed. The long-cherished castle tower was completed in the end of the Edo period on the pretext of offense and defense for Russia. The castle has two different faces. If you see it from the back side, you would find it plain. The castle town included the temple town that had played an important role as a fortress in case of battles. Today, as many as thirty- three Zen temples stand both on a road, which is called “Zenringai”. In contrast to the traditional atmosphere, the city has many western style buildings that were constructed during from the end of the 19th to the early of the 20th under the Meiji government policy of modernization. During the time, many foreigners were invited to implement the policy. Americans brought apple industry to the area. Since then, apple become specialty of the city. Near the castle park, there is the “Neputa festival village” where visitors see the best festive float of the year or experience other local culture. Sendai is the former castle town of Date Masamune. There are many trees along the streets in the central city, and the Hirose river runs through the city, additionally Mt. Aoba rises in the city. The city boosts beautiful landscape. A loop line is convenient for touring the major spots. The Sendai castle named Aoba castle have no castle tower. Date Masamune didn’t intentionally create it to avoid being watched by Ieyasu, the founder of the Tokugawa Shogunate. Because a castle tower was a symbol of authority. There are lot of things to see except for the castle, for example, Matsushima where some 260 small islands are floating in the Matsushima bay, which became natural protective walls when the massive tsunami struck the areas in the Great East Japan Earthquake. Visitors can enjoy the scenery form sightseeing boats or elevated areas called “Matsushima Sidaikan”, or four beautiful viewing spots. They are named “soukan”, or spectacular view, “reikan”, or tranquil view, “ikann” or magnificent view, and “yuukan” or artistic view respectively. Matsushima is designated as one of the three beautiful scenery of Japan. There are temple and shrine that remain the atmosphere of the Momoyama culture. One is Zuiganji temple, the other is Oosakihachimangu. The former one is Date’s family temple and the latter one enshrines the deity of warrior, Hachiman, in which horseback archery and naked festival are held. One of the most famous crafts in Sendai is “Sendai tansu”, or chest of drawers, which were originally created for Date Masamune when the Sendai castle was completed. Decorations attached on the drawers are characteristic of the crafts. The restaurant named Shokeikaku, the former residence of Date family offers local food in a unique style called sendai tansu cuisine. Variety kinds of ingredients on small plates are stored in the drawers of the miniaturized chest. The castle towns are the best place for learning Japanese history, seeing historical sites, enjoying local food, and experiencing local culture.

    • 城下町と商家町気質の違い

      城下町と商家町気質の違いThe difference between people of jokamachi and shokamachi is strongly related to the development of urban structure and the social order under Tokugawa shogunate.Jokamachi refers to a city developed surrounding a federal load’s castle. The history started in warring time and was made to have various functions. Military defense, administration and commercial aspects. Oda Nobunaga was the biggest contributor to the development of this urban structure. He gave privileged status to only samurai class by allowing them to live in jokamachi. At the same time, Nobunaga put great emphasis on trade and craft so called rakuichi-rakuza an open market. As jokamachi flourished and increased its political and economic value, protection from war and turmoil were in need. Moats and defensive walls were located. At the time of Edo period, jokamachi shifted less as a military base but more asa political and economic city for clans. Today, more than half of 100,000 populated cities are former jokamachi. Their appearance have changed due to big fires or war damage and city development. However, many jokamachi have preserved remnants of the old days. Festivals and regional traditions. Well preserved jokamachi are often informed as Sho-kyoto or ko-Edo.Recommended jokamachi are Aizu-Wakamatsu in Fukushima prefecture, Hikone in Shiga and Kumamoto.The lowest in the four social order, because they don’t produce anything, many merchants were actually very wealthy. Like all other social classes merchant were assigned to live in certain districts. They are characterized by shops lined up in streets and warehouses(Kura). As their wealth grew, merchants wanted to consume and display their wealth in the same manner as the samurai, but laws prevented them from doing so. Under series of laws that ban luxury, merchants invented uramasari(裏勝り)lining. To decorate their ordinary half-coat lining with gorgeous motifs and colors. Mt.fuji and dragons. Unseen ultimate fashion.Recommended shokamachi are Omi-Hachiman in Shiga and Sakai in Osaka.Under strict circumstances of social order, both samurai and merchants lived skillfully forming distinctive characters. Samurai with a pride as a ruling class. Morality, courage, compassion, politeness, honesty, respect and loyalty self control are eight virtues mentioned in Way of Warrior by Inazo Nitobe. On the other hand, merchant were innovative, active, low profile, good negotiator or diplomat and skillful in dealing with people. Think of Senn no Rikyu, originally a merchant perfected the way of tea. Inherited characters can be seen in invented products like Nisshin cupnoodle, House’s curry and mosquito coil by Kincho.Lastly I would like to point out the importance of castle to japanese. To those who lived near the local castle from childhood it means a lot. May be something that one can rely on. This is because when Kumamoto Castle were damaged by typhoon in 2016 or Shyuri Catsle was burnt down last year, regional people were so devastated. From this point of view, there is certainly a strong connection between people and castle. 

    • 江戸時代に繁栄した町

      江戸時代に繁栄した町(Prosperous cities during Edo Era)Sun. Apr. 12 (Canceled on Sun. Jan. 19, 2020)In Edo Era, most of the national income depended on tax (they paid rice in those days). A famine caused shortage of income tax. Politicians of those days tried to directly govern mines and seaports.The Modern society has common examples.(1) Edo Governor had business income, likewise, members of British Royal Family run business: British princess, Charles, runs a food company called “Dutchy Origins”.(2) Edo Government possessed prosperous places such as mines and seaports. Hongkong had been British territory and was returned to China because it has a lot of business transactions.新潟県佐渡金山Gold Mine Sado in NiigataObserve Gold Mine, cruise Sengaku Bay, crested ibises. Listen to Sado-okesa. Take a cruise of Tarai, a washtub.島根県石見銀山Silver Mine Iwami in ShimaneObserve a silver mine. Take a hot spring, Yunotsu.兵庫県郁美銀山Silver Mine Ikumi in HyogoObserve a silver mine.ワカサギFish smelts at Ikuno Lake.大分県日田市Hita City in OitaCruise or bicycles tours are available. Observe Sapporo beer factory and drink fresh beer! Visit parks, temples, and museums. Hina doll museum has dolls of Edo era.三(み)隈川(くまがわ)Observe cormorants’ fishing.長崎Port Nagasaki稲佐山Take a ropeway to Mt. Inasa: night scenery is gorgeous. Take a hot spring in Unzen. 西海橋Observe an eddy tide. This bridge connects Sasebo-city and Nishi-sonogi Peninsula. It is 43m high, 316m long. 針(はり)尾(お)瀬戸Under the bridge, a huge tide, as big as the one of Naruto, is seen.長崎造船所、三菱重工業:This ship factory originates in an iron manufacturer constructed in late Edo era.稼働中なのは第三船渠(せんきょ)、カンチレバークレーン、産業遺産:迎賓館、占勝閣:1904年長崎造船所長、荘田平五郎の邸宅として歓声、1905年軍艦千代田の艦長が宿泊した後に「風光景勝を占める」という意味で占勝閣と名付けられました。洋風木造で地下はレンガ造り、地下に厨房、1F応接室、食堂、書斎、2F寝室、ホール小菅修船場跡、木型場:世界遺産「明治日本の産業革命遺産」2015年登録された構成施設の一つ金沢:寺内町から城下町に発展した。輪島塗、九谷焼、加賀友禅

    • 最もユニークな城郭

      最もユニークな城郭It is difficult to define the territory of Castle Edo: it kept expanding; it is too huge.It is easy to shoot an arrow at an enemy swimming in a canal. It is easy to find an opponent carrying a boat to cross a canal. Most castles on hills or flat lands have canals. After 16th century, samurai lords began to construct canals with their castles. The lord’s men resided within the canal; a castle was a town.輪郭式縄張Double or triple circle canals are most common. An enemy crosses a canal twice or third times. 駿府城、山形城、二条城渦(か)郭式(かくしき)縄張The canal of Castle Edo whirls. In this case, it is easy to extend a canal as a town expands. In 1657, when 三代将軍家光Iemitsu reigned, a huge fire devoured the Castle and its city. 明暦の大火This made it possible to infrastructure the city. (There is a speculation that Assistant Shogun, 老中松平信綱Nobutsuna, burned the city for the infrastructure.) 60 % of the city was damaged. 930 samurai residents, 350 temples and shrines were destroyed. More than 100 thousand people died.The followings are contents of the infrastructure:1. Tokugawa society was safe enough to abolish the castle building.2. 守城Castles servers moved to the outer the canal. P.263. 奉行所老中若年寄Courts and other governors’ residence were constructed in the inner canal.4. Temples and shrines were transferred to suburbs.5. 吉原Yoshiwara, a red light district, was moved from Nihonbashi to Asakusa.6. 区画整理Streets and Samurais’ residents were re-zoned. 上野広小路、大崎広小路(Hirokoji, wide open place, was prepared to prevent buildings from fires.)7. Military matters did not allow to construct a bridge. 両国橋Ryogoku Bridge was built, however. 下総と武蔵 (The bridge connected Shimosa and Musashi.) Therefore, 深川Fukagawa developed as a residence town.8. The size of the city developed from 8 kilometers squares to 16 km squares.9. The population became more than 1 million.As the territory of the castle expanded, 城郭the borderline became unclear. In 1818, the government in public declared its territory: the east is River Nakagawa, the west is 神田上水Kanda River, the south is Shinagawa, the north is Arakawa River.京橋、数寄屋橋、新橋If you have visited Tokyo, you notice many “bashi” or “hashi”. “Hashi” means a bridge in Japanese. Kyobashi is just an address; there used to be a canal. A huge tsunami devoured north east regions in 2011. A powerful typhoon hit Honshu last year. Facing disasters, we have a trouble to dispose rubbles. 関東大震災An earthquake of magnitude 7.9 happened in 1923. B29 attacked downtown Tokyo on March 10, 1945. Finding no place to dispose rubbles, we have been reclaiming canals.無血開城In 1868, Shogun passed on authority to Emperor; Shogun stepped out and the castle became Emperor’s Palace.北の丸公園Kitanomaru Park. “Maru” was used to indicate the territory of a castle.乾通りMinistry opens Inui Street when cherries are blooming.本丸、二の丸、三の丸(東御苑)Gates and towers of this castle are exceedingly huge compared to another castles.二重橋と伏見櫓、桜田巽(たつみ)櫓: The watch tower built in Edo remains.富士見櫓: 3 stories watch tower alternated the main castle tower after Big Fire. 八方正面の櫓This tower is said to have 8 fronts for its 360 degrees awesome view. This tower was destroyed by the earthquake in 1923 and was re-built.城門外桜田門built in Edo era.井伊直弼暗殺清水門、田安門、平川門、北詰橋門両國回向院Ekoin in Ryogoku; the temple was built to console the victims of Big Fire in 1657

    • 3つの小江戸と3つの小江戸と歴史を知る旅(2泊3日)歴史を知る旅(2泊3日)

      3つの小江戸と歴史を知る旅(2泊3日)1日目成田空港―栃木市蔵の街(遊覧船/巴波川・塚田歴史伝説館・栃木街役場庁舎・とちぎ蔵の街美術館・とちぎ山車会館)―足利学校(日本最古の学校)―川越泊2日目川越(時の鐘・蔵造りの街並み・大沢家住宅・亀屋本店・埼玉りそな銀行川越店旧山吉デパート・薬師神社・川越城中ノ門堀跡・富士見櫓跡・氷川神社)―香取3日目香取(佐原古い街並み・ぶれきめらお休み処にて醤油ソフト・伊能忠敬旧宅&記念館)成田山新勝寺―成田空港今回、何故この3カ所をスポットとして選んだかというと、小江戸として関東地方栄えたこの3つの街を比べた時何がみえるのか?どこに共通点があり、違いがあるのかを見比べられると考えました。まず初めに紹介したいのが、塚田歴史伝説館では、リアルすぎるおばあさんロボットとおじいさんロボットが出迎えてくれます。巴波遊覧船でのんびり揺られて古き良き昔の景色を堪能したところで、江戸時代に建てられたという3つの質蔵を拝観できるとちぎ蔵の街美術館へ移動し、とちぎ山車会館では地元のお祭りを堪能することができます。1日目の最後に日本最古の学校足利学校へ立ち寄り川越にて宿泊します。2日目は、川越の街からはじまり川越の歴史ある街並みを堪能したあとで、香取市へいどうします、3日目は、佐原の古い街並みからはじまり、日本地図完成させた伊能忠敬の旧宅と記念館にて、地図の歴史を十分に知った後に、開山1000年以上の有名な寺院成田山新勝寺参道を散策、川豊でうなぎを堪能したあと成田空港へ向かいます。

  • 08Apr
    •  Summer flavors in Kyoto                        

      Summer flavors in Kyoto Atsuko Yamamoto Summer in Kyoto is very hot and humid because it is situated in the basin, which has greatly influenced food culture in Kyoto during the summer season.Firstly, I’ll tell you about the distinctive style of eating called “Kawayuka”. Restaurants along the Kamo and Katsura rivers set a platform over the rivers for enjoying the cool. Guests can have meals in comfortable atmosphere, hearing the stream of the rivers and feeling the breeze. The style is a common feature in Kyoto during the hot summer.Secondly, I’ll introduce you some summer flavors. One of them is “hamo” or pike conger, which has a lot of small bones that will make chefs trouble. Despite its fierce appearance, the taste is bland, and once being parboiled it will turn to peony-shaped white fish meat. It is sometimes served on the plate made of ice. There is an interesting episode about the fish, it goes like this. “In Kyoto, pike congers are caught in mountains.” In the past, while the fishes caught in the Seto Inland Sea were transferred to Kyoto by a career through mountain paths, he carelessly dropped some of them. After that, farmers picked them up and found them still alive. The story indicates the fish has strong life force, which is another reason why Kyotoite have them. They eat them aimed at getting energy to overcome the intense heat. Another major fish is “ ayu” or sweetfish, which lives in rivers. The central Kyoto is far away from the sea, so residents in Kyoto have had it, mainly being grilled with salt. Kyoto vegetables are also famous. Kyoto was a seat of the Imperial Court, so many kinds of vegetables were brought from across Japan as tributes. Farmers have developed varieties of the vegetables, which leads to appearance of Kyoto vegetables such as “kamo eggplants”, “ manganji green peppers”, and “ shishigatani pumpkin “. Those are cultivated in the Saga district. Grilled the eggplant coated with miso paste is very popular. Kyoto has produced customs related to vegetables like “shoryo-uma” or horse for the spirits of our ancestors during the Bon festival. The horse is not the real horse. We see a cucumber and an eggplant as the horse. It is believed that the spirits of our ancestors come to their home riding on the cucumber horse and return to the other world on the eggplant horse. Lastly, I’ll tell you about summer sweets in Kyoto. The representative sweets are “kanten” or ager, “warabimochi” or rice dumplings made of bracken-root starch, and “kuzukiri” or strips of jellied kudzu starch. All of them go down smoothly even during the scorching summer. There is a newcomer, which is a bowl of ice shavings flavored with matcha syrup and high-quality sake made in Fushimi. The combination of powdered green tea and sake create the new taste, which represents the feature of Kyoto where traditional customs and innovative spirit live together.

    • Sense of beauty of Japanese

      Sense of beauty of Japanese Atsuko YamamotoWe Japanese have lived in the harmony with nature since the ancient times, appreciating nature’s abundant blessings. We’ve also deified natural beings including thunder and wind. Such our practices come from our ancestors’ life style of farming that easily affected by weather. Rice fields have been occasionally flooded with torrential rains, but rains were essential for cultivating. Therefore they had worshipped nature with both appreciation and fear. Additionally, we probably believe that even things such as disused dolls and much-used needles could have souls like human beings, and so hold religious services or build tombs for them. Those kinds of feeling, though might be quite strange for foreign people, influence the sense of beauty for our Japanese. One of the most representative concepts of the sense of beauty is wabi, sabi. Wabi refers to something solitary that is pleasant situations rather than acceptable situations. For instance, it is just like living in a small but comfortable hut with fewer things in mountainous region far away from residential areas. Sabi means aging. We could find developed and refined beauty in something fading such as moss-covered stones, tea gardens, and cleanly swept- compounds in traditional temples. I would like to mention about “ kirei-sabi”, which is refined beauty. One of the most famous tea masters in the Edo period, Kobori Enshu made Japanese gardens to be refined by adding artificial elements on traditional ones. Another sense of beauty named Yugen is in Noh performance. Noh performers wear masks, so we can’t see their expressions, however we can feel their emotions underneath the masks, stretching our imagination while seeing their elegant move on the austere stage. Last but not least, the aesthetic sense of Japanese can be found in manufacturing. The origin of it was backed to the ancient times when our ancestors had created Shinto or Buddhist objects for rituals by using natural products, putting their heart and soul into their works, which has been handed down for generations in various fields of art, for example, pottery, and calligraphy. When we appreciate the art works, we feel inner beauty.

    • Tour to experience Japanese beauty

      Tour to experience Japanese beauty初詣When a hand of a clock reaches midnight, Americans set crackers off and yell “A happy new year!”. Fireworks explore in the midnight sky; people on a crowded street hug and kiss each other.Quite contrary, a Japanese new year is very sacred. Before midnight, a bell in a Buddhist temple begins ringing to purify human sins. Many Japanese visit temples and shrines to give thanks to the past year and to wish happiness of the coming year. Quietness is Japanese beauty.鰹節工場見学Cut off a head and remove insides from a bonito. Remove fat, fins, and skin.Boil it for 2 hours; 100℃ water makes fish meat breakable. 90℃ is appropriate.Smoke bonitoes for 1 hour; the temperature should be85-90℃.Smoke bonitoes for 1 hour; the temperature should be 80℃.Naturally dry the bonito in a room.This procedure of smoking is repeated 15 times.Grind a bonito so that its surface becomes smooth.Sprinkle molds onto a bonito. (The mold has 5 functions: it dries a bonito. It removes fat and gives good smell. Soup gets clear. It increases 旨みumami.)Wash away molds.The whole procedure takes 6 months. The main procedure is to remove whatever is unnecessary so that its soup has pure taste of bonito muscle. This is quite contrary to western soup. They add onions, carrots and celeries to chicken broth. 美味In Japanese, bimi literally means “beautiful taste”. Simplicity is Japanese beauty.人形供養Japanese feel guilty about disposing dolls and have a funeral to bury dolls. When children are grown-ups, dolls are just obstacles.針供養When needles are worn out and useless, Japanese have a rite to bury needles. We give thanks that needles helped mothers sew children’s clothes.お遍路Ohenro pilgrimage is to walk along the seacoasts of Shikoku Island to visit 88 temples. Residents around the pilgrimage route offer free drink or food. Some of them even offer free place to stay or a room to rest at very low price. The concept is that a pilgrim travels with Kukai, Great Priest of 9th century. The residents show hospitality to both the pilgrim and the Great Priest. Hospitality is Japanese beauty.華道体験In the west, arranged flowers are placed in a center of a table or in a hotel lobby. Many flowers are used for there are spectators 360°around. In Japan, flowers are often decorated in a tea ceremony. 床の間Invited guests enter a tearoom and go to a tokonoma where flowers are decorated. In a tokonoma, the host hangs a picture to welcome guests. It is in a corner of a tearoom so that spectators see just the front of decorated flowers. Lines or flows of flowers express the art although westerners try to express art by surface. Simplicity is Japanese beauty.

    • 京都の夏の味覚  

      京都の夏の味覚 Kyoto‘s summer tradition kawadoko culture in relation to abundant regional products and and Lotus sake are fun and suitable examples of summer gastronomy in Kyoto.Unique to basin region, landlocked by mountains Kyoto is famous for its’ summer heat and humidity. So since old times, Kyoto people have devised cool ways to lessen the intense heat. It is called kawadoko started around 400 years ago in Azuchi-Momoyama period. Approximately 90 restaurants and cafes set up their facilities— balconies like platform over hanging the Kamogawa river. It is available from May to September. Refreshing wind over the river entertain guests to pass the summer heat.Along with Kamogawa, Kibune, located northeast of Kyoto has cultivated same kawadoko culture from Taisho era. This region is almost minus 10-degree lower in temperature compare to Kyoto city. To those worship and pray for Kifune shrine which is famous for water protecting deity rested and stayed around. Among those restaurants there is a place famous for nagashisomen. This is a fun traditional japanese eating style. Somen noodles racing by a bamboo pipe full of flowing chilly water. You catch the noodles with your chopsticks and dip them in to a cup of sauce and eat. When red shiso noodle appears that means it’s finish.You also can enjoy kaiseiken course lunch at Kibune. Notable menus are hamo(鱧), conger pike eel and Kyoto vegetables. Hamo dishes flourished in Kyoto, because the conger pike completely neglected in Osaka in old days, was only fish that could be brought alive to kyoto basin surrounded by mountains in all directions. The reason for unpopularity is that hamo contains thousands of fine bones. And it may take a chef up to a decade to master the techniques to separate bones without destroying the delicate flavorful meat. Interestingly enough that Kyoto’s most famous festival, the Gion Festival, is also nicknamed the Hamo Matsuri, literally the Pike Conger Festival. Because of the abundant amount of consumption of hamo during July 1st to 31st. Hamo in Yubiki style with ume sour plum meat or Karashimiso mustard is recommended.As for Kyoto brand vegetables, now 41 types are certified by the Japan’s Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries. For more than a thousand years, Kyoto was the imperial capital of Japan. During that time, as people came and went, they brought offerings to the emperor and the city’s temples and shrines, resulting in having the finest of everything from Japan, including vegetables. Today, we know them as kyoyasai vegetables. Kamonasu , large round eggplant, Shishigatani squash pumpkins.Haszake is an interesting sake drinking style through lotus leaf stem. It is held annually at Mimuroto-ji temple in Uji City. This temple is famous with lovely hydrangea garden, mountain with azaleas and a water garden with 250 lotus pots. From early July to August the lotus flowers bloom in gorgeous shades of white and pink, and Mimuroto-ji has a wide variety of rare lotus breeds. Lotus flower in Buddhism is regarded as a symbol of purity, enlightenment, self-regeneration and rebirth.Even when its roots are in the dirtiest waters, the lotus produces the most beautiful flower. Tradition says that drinking from a lotus leaf stem is good for health and long life, so in that hope up to three hundred people can be served their sake lotus-style. A large lotus leaf is used as a cup, and it can be lifted up to extend the stem, which serves as a straw.Both kawadoko and lotus sake are great experience to feel the relationship between food and long inherited culture of kyoto.

    • 戦国時代はなぜ歴史ファンに根強い人気があるか

      戦国時代はなぜ歴史ファンに根強い人気があるかIn contrast to other historical eras in Japanese history, Sengoku Jidai seems the most adopted settings in novels, movies and historical drama. What are the reasons behind the popularity? To solve this issue first I would like to explain about the warring state period. Then three main factors to support the charm of Sengoku boom.1. Bunburyodo(武士道),2.state of rivalry of powerful leaders(群雄割拠)3.the lively period which allows everyone to be successful depending on their talent and skill, no matter what the status is are discussed.The Warring States period (Sengoku jidai) in Japanese history was an era of war and chaos.The major civil wars fought around the middle of the 15th century in and around Kyoto triggered a long period of almost constant warring throughout Japan. This period, during which the generals defended their domains with ingenuity and military might, lasted around 130 years, until the end of the 16th century, when Japan was finally united under one leader.And this very period that arts such as the Japanese tea ceremony were also born.During Sengoku period, there appeared lots of heroes. Oda Nobunaga, Toyotomi Hideyoshi, Tokugawa Ieyasu, Uesugi Kenshin, Takeda Shingen. Constant battling produced many generals, known as "Sengoku busho." The outstanding generals of this age were not only brave, but also very skilled at strategy. They had superior decisiveness, were skilled leaders, and were experts at assigning their underlings to necessary positions as well as governing their domains.They have accomplished in both the literary and military arts. That is bunburyodo. And constantly at risk of death made their characters stand out and left lots of episodes with human touch.Next, 群雄割拠. This warring era was not the divided war such as Genpei War or War between Meiji restoration army and former shogunate army. It was a war all over. So enormous tension against betrayal and overpowering seniors attracts people as a theme setting. And Bushido—warrior ethos to encourage samurai to embrace life. But samurai is constantly exposed to killing and training . This paradox is another factor to attract people’s attention.Third, take Hideyoshi Toyotomi for instance, he was the most successful man in japanese history in terms of climbing up the ladder, from farmer to Kanpaku emperor’s chief adviser.This kind of initiation story is attractive.In recent years, history freak japanese woman ‘rekijo’(歴女)are increasing in Japan.These are women who are crazy about history, especially the Sengoku era (the Warring State Period) The triggers of the history boom are the TV drama series and movies based on historical facts that feature young popular actors. The number of rekijo has increased and more historical facts themed games, manga and magazines are found in the market. Rekijo also like to visit historical sites or any place related to history.Therefore attractive hero’s and humanity episodes seen in Sengoku Jidai and new tendencies that young women who are at the fore front of the Sengoku boom both entangle to make Sengoku Jidai very popular.The triggers of the history boom are the TV drama series and movies based on historical facts that feature young popular actors.Since about 2007, the number of rekijo has increased and more historical facts themed games, manga and magazines are found in the market.Before the boom, mostly middle-aged and older men bought this history magazine and only 15% of female readers, but lately, 40% of the readers are women.It’s said that there are about 140,000 rekijo in Japan; therefore their enthusiasms play a great part in improving the economy.

    • 京都の夏の味覚  

      京都の夏の味覚 Kyoto‘s summer tradition kawadoko culture in relation to abundant regional products and and Lotus sake are fun and suitable examples of summer gastronomy in Kyoto.Unique to basin region, landlocked by mountains Kyoto is famous for its’ summer heat and humidity. So since old times, Kyoto people have devised cool ways to lessen the intense heat. It is called kawadoko started around 400 years ago in Azuchi-Momoyama period. Approximately 90 restaurants and cafes set up their facilities— balconies like platform over hanging the Kamogawa river. It is available from May to September. Refreshing wind over the river entertain guests to pass the summer heat.Along with Kamogawa, Kibune, located northeast of Kyoto has cultivated same kawadoko culture from Taisho era. This region is almost minus 10-degree lower in temperature compare to Kyoto city. To those worship and pray for Kifune shrine which is famous for water protecting deity rested and stayed around. Among those restaurants there is a place famous for nagashisomen. This is a fun traditional japanese eating style. Somen noodles racing by a bamboo pipe full of flowing chilly water. You catch the noodles with your chopsticks and dip them in to a cup of sauce and eat. When red shiso noodle appears that means it’s finish.You also can enjoy kaiseiken course lunch at Kibune. Notable menus are hamo(鱧), conger pike eel and Kyoto vegetables. Hamo dishes flourished in Kyoto, because the conger pike completely neglected in Osaka in old days, was only fish that could be brought alive to kyoto basin surrounded by mountains in all directions. The reason for unpopularity is that hamo contains thousands of fine bones. And it may take a chef up to a decade to master the techniques to separate bones without destroying the delicate flavorful meat. Interestingly enough that Kyoto’s most famous festival, the Gion Festival, is also nicknamed the Hamo Matsuri, literally the Pike Conger Festival. Because of the abundant amount of consumption of hamo during July 1st to 31st. Hamo in Yubiki style with ume sour plum meat or Karashimiso mustard is recommended.As for Kyoto brand vegetables, now 41 types are certified by the Japan’s Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries. For more than a thousand years, Kyoto was the imperial capital of Japan. During that time, as people came and went, they brought offerings to the emperor and the city’s temples and shrines, resulting in having the finest of everything from Japan, including vegetables. Today, we know them as kyoyasai vegetables. Kamonasu , large round eggplant, Shishigatani squash pumpkins.Haszake is an interesting sake drinking style through lotus leaf stem. It is held annually at Mimuroto-ji temple in Uji City. This temple is famous with lovely hydrangea garden, mountain with azaleas and a water garden with 250 lotus pots. From early July to August the lotus flowers bloom in gorgeous shades of white and pink, and Mimuroto-ji has a wide variety of rare lotus breeds. Lotus flower in Buddhism is regarded as a symbol of purity, enlightenment, self-regeneration and rebirth.Even when its roots are in the dirtiest waters, the lotus produces the most beautiful flower. Tradition says that drinking from a lotus leaf stem is good for health and long life, so in that hope up to three hundred people can be served their sake lotus-style. A large lotus leaf is used as a cup, and it can be lifted up to extend the stem, which serves as a straw.Both kawadoko and lotus sake are great experience to feel the relationship between food and long inherited culture of kyoto.