2011年7月4日月曜日

Really hot and humid!

Hot and humid season began in Japan quite a while ago. This is Japan, having very hot summer is not unusual. However, this summer could be a tough one since Japanese government and many electric companies in Japan has called for cooperation in the reduction of electricity usage to avoid serious blackout.How can we survive without air conditioner???

Japanese supposed to be very good at making things look or feel believable. For instance, the sounds of 風鈴(fu-rin), a wind bell, make us feel breeze of cool air, and 苔玉(Koke-dama), a moss ball, also gives us a feeling of cool summer.

 










Also, 扇子(sensu)、内輪(Uchiwa fan) and 浴衣(yukata).
and, of course, you have to check Japanese confectionery, 和菓子(wagashi). Confectioners of traditional According to the month of the yearJapanese sweets are keen for changing the shapes and the colors of their sweets. I will show you the art of Japanese confectionery some other time.

2011年7月3日日曜日

Osaka Station City

JR Osaka Station was renovated, and extended the station into a big, interesting recreation spot, OSAKA STATION CITY. They have two tall buildings, North gate building and South gate building. JR Osaka Station lays between the two. North gate building includes a department-store ISETAN, shopping mall LUCUA, a movie theater osaka station city cinema, and more.

I went to LUCUA to have a lunch with my friends.  They suggested to meet near the Osaka station around 10:00 am. I thought, "That's a little early to have a lunch, but probably they need to go home early because they have kids." But, that was wrong. They knew, unless we get the restaurants as early as possible, we have to wait for a long time. Sure, a bit past 10:00 am, there are people already making a line, waiting the restaurants to be open!


We chose an Italian restaurant called 'vivi verde,' since the owner chef is very famous like Mario Batali in Japan. Sure, there are a lot people waiting. It's all girls!!
The restaurant is relatively small; the tables are very close to each other. Their kitchen is also quite small, but there are a lot of staffs working in the kitchen area. It seems too crowded.
I ordered the set menu, an hors d'oeuvre and a pasta. 
The taste was... all right. Nothing special. It was 1,680 yen (about $20.00).

The great thing about this new building, there are a lot of open areas where you can take a rest, eat lunch, and enjoy panorama view of Osaka.

Above this floor, there is a farm growing vegetables. But we didn't go. There was a notice warning us; "Please be prepare. It's like a bit of hike climbing stairs to get the farm. Please bring a bottle of water with you." Because it was a very hot day, we decided not to do it this time.

Anyway, there are many more cool shops and restaurants, too! I will report you some other time.

   

2010年7月19日月曜日

The famous Red Ferris wheel at the top of HEP FIVE!

If you have a chance to come to Umeda district in Osaka, you may want to visit a red Ferris wheel on the top of HEP FIVE.

HEP FIVE is an interesting integrated spaces; if you go up to the top of the building, you  can get ride on a big red Ferris wheel, and you can enjoy a spectacular view of Osaka !

The Ferris wheel is a landmark of Umeda district; if you get lost in Umeda district, you may want to find this ferris wheel!

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2010年7月1日木曜日

Clematis



Such a gorgeous flowers.
It's fun to walk around my neighbors. Even though many Japanese may have neither huge front yards nor gardens as Americans, most of them enjoy growing beautiful flowers and plants to decorate their properties. Of course, Japan is a country of "bonsai"!

Oh, my god! I found an error.

 I was on a process of producing a flier for my concerts. My brother, who is a web-designer, designed it, which I really liked. I was very excited! To avoid errors and typos, I checked again and again. After many proof reading, I thought it was perfect. Yesterday I ordered to print. I was so happy that one big work was done. BUT!!! Today, I found an error by 'accident.' Very bad one. Oh, my GoD!!! Immediately we contacted the printing company that we ordered, but, they said they could not stop the process. We have to reorder it... Damn!!! It's a waste of money and papers...I wish I were more careful. I wish I paid more attentions to details. I wish...

As soon as I found my mistake, I was depressed. I felt like having a bad stomachache. Still I feel very low... I hate making AND finding mistakes...  I feel like I start doubting everything I do. I can become very negative. No, that's not good. I have to cheer myself up!













This was a good lesson.
Next time, I will be more careful,
more conscious for every details.

2010年6月28日月曜日

"A tropical night"

                               
I guess summer is already here in Osaka. Even during the night, the air does not get cool. It stays hot and humid! Last night was quite bad; the air was too still and very wet... Unbelievable.
In Japan, we call these sleepless hot night as 熱帯夜(nettaiya); literary it means a "tropical night."  We call it when the temperture of a night doesn't fall below 25℃.(with humidity!) Of course, comparing to India or southern Asian countries, this is nothing. But, it's not fun if you are having a hard time sleeping...

 Reading a complicated book, or these CDs may help get me sleep!
(very interesting titles...)

2010年6月26日土曜日

A rainy season

Right now, Japan is in a middle of tuyu (梅雨), the Eastern Arian rainy season. The rainy season can be a very uncomfortable season; wet, humid, and hot! Although Osaka is not classified as a tropical climate area, the weather and the humidity of our region makes us feel like we are getting a part of it. I do not know how long it will last this year, but it's all right. All greens need a lot of water to grow.

Tuyu literary means plum rain. Since this rainy season coincide with the season of the plum ripening. However, most Japanese would say the flower of the rainy season is a Hydrangea, Ajisai in Japanese. Right now you can find a variety of hydrangeas all over Japan.
It may be fun to visit parks and temples, where are famous for their Hydrangea garden. For example, Sanzen-in temple in Ohara, Kyoto, has bushes of more that 3,000 hydrangea, and the temple holds Ajisai Festival aound this time. (You can check it at this link: http://www.kyoto.travel/) You may find very interesting ones!