Dokodemo Door!

Friday, January 14, 2011

16th Anniversary of the 1995 Kobe Earthquake

If you walk alongside the train line from the nearest train station to my apartment, it is possible to see one spot in particular where the color of the concrete suddenly changes. It goes from a rust color to a battleship gray. This is, or so I have been told, one of the places that needed to be repaired after the Great Hanshin earthquake of 1995.

Except for that, it's rather hard to find visible signs in the Higashinada neighborhood that anything out of the ordinary may have happened in the past.

UPDATE: When I originally posted this, I meant the anniversary would be this week. January 17th is the exact day.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Taipei, baby!

At the end of this month, Mari and I plan to take a quick little vacation down to Taipei for a few days. I really feel as if I should've already been to the Republic of China by now. Plus, I keep insisting on saying it Táiběi.

So what does Taipei have to see and do?

Quite a lot, actually. Plus, I'll probably get to use my Mandarin. Stay tuned for new photos appearing in early February.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Ringing-in ōshōgatsu at the jinja

I went to this same event exactly one year ago and thought it would be a good opportunity to record the sights and sounds of ōshōgatsu in a run-of-the-mill neighborhood shrine. Last year was when I had to pound mochi with a wooden mallet in a big stone bowl for part of the afternoon. (New Year mochi are, in my opinion, overrated. Even without the choking hazard.)

Unfortunately, I arrived after they'd already smashed-open the wooden sake kegs at midnight so I couldn't get that on video.