Coke, Mentos, Mocchi, Hammers, Swords, Sticks, Buses, and Planes. Need I say more? --- 10 months after leaving Japan I still hadn't gotten around to putting together one last episode of this video podcast. I guess it was because, more than anything else, I didn't have a theme, just an amalgamation of other things from elsewhere during the trip. I also felt strange about tying this series to a close. It was an emotional moment for all involved and I would hate for this to bring about bad blood. It's been my sincerest wish that the people that made this trip special felt comfortable with the entire process and that they were respected throughout my project. Thank you so much to all of you for making this trip the experience of a lifetime. It made me only more certain of what I want to do with my life and what I want to strive towards. Best wishes to all of you.
21 Apr 2009
Tokyo Mini-Guide Part 2
Part two of a two-part introduction to Tokyo. In this episode we'll introduce you to the Japan rail system and show you how to get practically anywhere in the country. After that it's off to Harajuku's Takeshita Street and Yoyogi Park. A hop skip and jump away is Asakusa and the Tokyo Edo Museum. Returning from there we take a few stops but wind our way down to Shibuya.
1 Sep 2008
Tokyo Mini-Guide Part 1
Part 1 of a two-part introduction to Tokyo. By no means a substitute to exploring the city on your own, this episode is a mini-guide that will help you on your way to exploring the city or in helping a friend see what you have seen. In this episode, Shinjuku, Shinjuku-Gyoen, Ueno Park, Kokyo, and finally Akihabara with a glimpse inside of the infamous Don Quixote store.
13 Jul 2008
How I Spent My Golden Week Vacation
I thought it was gonna be a pretty easygoing trip to Hakone, but as it turns out, my host family doesn't screw around when it comes to vacations. From Hakone, to Kawaguchi, to Fuji, to Yamanashi, this is a taste of the other side of Japan . . . you know, the part that hasn't been paved.
25 May 2008
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The Kansai Experience
We took a week off from our regularly scheduled classes to take a trip to the Kansai region of Japan via Shinkansen. Along the way we visited Miyajima, Hiroshima, Kyoto, Nara, and Osaka. Needless to say it was far too much to fully appreciate in such a short span of time, but that just gives me the excuse to come back again.
7 May 2008
Okonomiyaki and Other Vice
My host brother is pretty inventive when it comes to his toys. With a little malevolence, he could potentially take over the world. Fortunately for us, he is content just firing rubber bands at his brothers and some Lego people. After that is a stroll through Kawasaki's Kanamara-sama Festival (WARNING: NSFW). Last but not least, if you ain't ever had it, you ain't never lived. It's Okonomiyaki time!
18 Apr 2008
How to Make Udon Noodles
Ingredients --- • 1 tsp salt • 2/3 cup of water • 2 1/2 cups wheat flour Equipment --- • 2ft x 2ft cutting board • Rolling pin or dowel • Small bowl of wheat flour • Long Knife or Cleaver • Container for noodles Directions --- Mix ingredients together with hands until doughy. Knead dough in a plastic bag (traditionally this is done with the feet). When the dough becomes rubbery, flatten with a wooden dowel or rolling pin until approximately 1/16 of an inch thick. Dust the flattened dough with flour and pleate to length of knife. Cut to desired thickness (1/6 of an inch recommended). Shake free excess flour, twist into bundles, and place in container. Handmade noodles are best eaten promptly. Boil noodles for approximately five minutes. Add desired seasonings. Suggested Seasonings --- • Fresh Ginger • Green Onions • Shitake Mushrooms • Katsuobushi (Dried Fish Flakes) • Basil and/or parsley • Nori • Chili Powder • Sake ^_^ いただきます (Let's Eat!)
11 Apr 2008
Off to Explore
Even after having a few weeks to adjust, embarking on trips around the Tokyo area can be a bit daunting. Fortunately, no one has had to do it alone. With the help of the Japan Studies Program Peer Assistants everyone has been able to see a bit of Yokohama and Kawagoe that would be hard to see without their noble guidance. They also know some good karaoke places too. With a little help from my host family I've also been able to see some of the seacoast of Japan in the Chiba area and get out to do some fishing. Of course, it'd be nicer if I got some sleep too . . . but seriously, who has time for that?
3 Apr 2008
First Encounter with Japan
The first week - from arrival to placement with my host family.
14 Mar 2008
Get ready . . .
22 Feb 2008