Nara Fire Festival

Every year in Nara they light thousands of lanterns and burn this into the side of the mountain:

People familiar with Japanese might recognize that Chinese Characters as meaning “large” or “big”. However, in several sects of Buddhism it means “universe”.  It is burned to wish those that died in war peace in the next universe, aka the next life.  Continue reading “Nara Fire Festival”

The Nikka Whiskey Factory In Hokkaido

There is a whole TV show in Japan devoted to the story of how whiskey came to Japan.  It was groundbreaking for its time because of its depiction an asian male/ western woman female couple on Japanese TV.


It became really popular and garnered great ratings.  The theme song became quite recognizable.

As for me, whenever Japanese students found out my husband was Japanese their eyes would go wide and they would ask, “Is his name Masan?”

I had disappoint them and say, “No”.

Then they’d try and see if my middle name was Ellie because westerners have more than two names.  And again, I’d have to disappoint.

So this TV show actually affected me in an indirect way.

Stranger yet, my husband was also a fan of the TV show which is normally not his cup of tea (he likes stuff about cars and the news).  I think deep down he liked seeing a couple on TV that he felt looked like our couple.  He would pre-record this show and we would watch it together after he came home from work. That’s how much he liked it. Continue reading “The Nikka Whiskey Factory In Hokkaido”