a day in okutama

Happy belated Mountain Day! To celebrate, we went to Okutama・奥多摩 , Tokyo Prefecture. It took a bit over 2 hours to get there from over the other side of Tokyo, so we were up at 5:45 on a Saturday morning. We managed to get seats on the trains, which was my number one concern of the day and the trains are cool, so not a bad place to be in the middle of Japanese summer. When we arrived, they were gearing up for the festival, with stalls lining the streets but they weren’t open whilst we were there.

This month ...

june and july memories and august wish list

june and july memories

The cicadas have finally started making their little chirps (quite noisy little creatures really) and the temperatures are soaring. Europe had a heatwave too and the world just seems to be going crazy! Take care in the heat.

We went on a boat – link here for the one we did which was really good. I emailed Miho and her English was impeccable, so no worries there. When we got to the boat, I was the only, shall we say, non-Japanese looking person in our group of ten. She started speaking in Japanese and it was ...

studying jlpt japanese

It’s a controversial topic – to JLPT or not, but like it or lump it, it can be quite useful when it comes to job hunting. Of course, it’s a double edged sword because the JLPT doesn’t test speaking, so you can have N1 but be terrible at speaking. People have their own assumptions about your abilities when it comes to your JLPT level but sometimes, their expectations can be a little unfair. Of course the JLPT doesn’t test writing either, which can be considered quite a useful skill.

Anyway, I wanted to compile a list of resources that have ...

how to make ume sour

The umes are back in season, so get yourself down to the supermarket and pick some up. If you go later on at night, you might even get them reduced. This year I have had a go at making ume sour and if you fancy having a go too, here’s how I did it.

I followed the above recipe which came with one of the jars. I doubled the amounts because I got 1000g of umes.

Gather the necessary items (1kg ume, 1kg rock sugar, 800-1000ml vinegar (I used apple) and a 3 or 4 litre container) ...

climbing mt. fuji – 17th august 2018

So you want to climb Fujisan? You’re thinking, ‘I’m in Japan, it’s a great idea! A once in a lifetime opportunity’. Well I’m here to say, think again! Well, not really, it’s your life, but I’ll tell you what, I don’t have fond memories of my time spent on that mountain and if I could do it all again, I wouldn’t. I’d just go to station 5 and come home and be very content with that. If I haven’t put you off already, I encourage you to read on!

rental stuff

We rented our waterproofs and boots from here ...