awordfromjapan

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awordfromjapan
This blog tells the story of my time in Japan, what I did, what I saw, what I thought and what I learned. It is a way of sharing my experiences with friends and family, and anyone who might take an interest.
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  • 駅弁 Eki-ben—lunchbox for eating on the train 2 months ago The Shinkansen has been moving people around Japan at high speed since the 1960s, and throughout that time the network has continued to extend, with new, ever faster and more futuristic-looking train designs appearing every few years. The latest development, which opened in March 2015, extends the...
  • 土曜日 doyoubi—Saturday 2 months ago This blog post is being written at 280 km/h as we speed through the countryside in the 新幹線 Shinkansen train from Osaka to Tokyo on Easter Sunday morning. Our destination today is Sendai, in Japan’s 東北 touhoku (north-east) region. Even at Shinkansen speeds, it will take 5 or 6 hours to...
  • あぶない abunai—watch out! 3 months ago One little difference between Japanese and English is that when we urgently need to warn someone of danger, we call out something like “Careful!” or “Watch out!”, whereas they say “Dangerous!” (危ない abunai). (I’m talking about the spoken language here, rather than warning...
  • crêpes 8 months ago I’ve often said, only half in jest, that when you go to a foreign country, your IQ immediately drops by 50 points. A task as simple as buying milk in the store has pitfalls for the unwary. And so it was on our recent visit to France, which featured several instances of idiocy, fortunately none...
  • lieu-dit 9 months ago We stayed in a really charming gîte (holiday rental) in Upper Brittany. These gîtes ruraux are usually in quite remote countryside locations; typically they are former farmhouses that have been renovated and converted for use as comfortable holiday homes. It’s not unusual for the gîte to be...

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