Category Archives: Photos

Take a quiet walk into famous painting

GIFU, May 9 – It’d been an ordinary pond in the forest right next to Nemichi Shrine in Seki City, Gifu Prefecture, but now it’s a popular place known as “Monet’s Pond.” Fresh green trees are reflected on the water, and beautiful water lilies are floating. It looks so much like a “Water Lilies” picture by French Impressionist Claude Monet. Then, naturally, people started to call it “Monet’s Pond.” The pond is about the size of a tennis court, and it’s a reservoir for rice paddies in its neighborhood. When the tourist farm next to it, “Itadori Flower Park,” opened in 1999, some residents started to weed and clean the … Continue reading

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Future ambitious 4th-generation dairy cattle farmer run for postponed Olympic torch relay in Fukushima

FUKUSHIMA, Apr. 5 – The boy began his run in the schoolyard in Abukuma Highlands in Fukushima Prefecture, Japan. Holding the torch aloft, he placed his feet firmly on the ground. Due to the Covid-19 outbreak, the Tokyo 2020 Olympics and Paralympics have been postponed for one year. The torch relay for the peaceful festivities, which is billed as the “Recovery Olympics” by Japan, set off on March 25 at the J-Village sports complex in the prefecture struck by the 2011 earthquakes and nuclear crisis. The 16-year-old boy, Ryoji Sakuma, was the third torchbearer in the seventh section on the first day in Katsurao Village. He ran a lap of … Continue reading

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[Noh no Ikebana for every season] “Best wishes for peaceful new year!” Ikuko Kikuchi in Kitakami City, Iwate Prefecture, put her wish to welcome guests into her new-year arrangements

IWATE, Dec. 18 – People are trying to cheer up themselves and others by preparing special new-year celebrations while the pandemic continues. Ikuko Kikuchi in Kitakami City, Iwate Prefecture, put her every thought into her new-year arrangements at home to wish that the new year will be peaceful and that she can invite someone home again. ・Demonstrating her omotenashi-mind inside and outside “The theme of the arrangements is ‘Welcome to our home!’ I made three arrangements for the entrance to express my wish to welcome my guests. I put a fresh-picked cabbage, a head of broccoli, and other vegetables in a mortar. By doing so, I want to show that … Continue reading

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Hida beef producers celebrates new Hida-gyu wrapping bus debut in Gifu Prefecture

GIFU, Nov. 28 – A highway express bus with a bus wrap of newly-designed Hida beef images will start operating on November 28, 2020. A council of Hida beef producers and a local bus operator, Nohi Noriai Jidosha Co., Ltd., will operate the Hida beef wrapping bus for three years, mainly on the routes that connect Takayama with Nagoya and Tokyo. On one side, the bus has an impressive image of a woman eating Hida beef, and on the other side, it has a 3-D image of big beautiful pieces of Hida beef. It runs across Japan to boost the Hida beef industry’s operation, which was hit hard by the … Continue reading

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Ox-shaped lucky daruma doll making at peak before New Year’s Day in Japan

KANAGAWA, Nov. 12 – A shop in Hiratsuka, Kanagawa Prefecture, is now super-busy making cow-shaped lucky dolls called “eto daruma” for sales during the year change period. Arai Darumaya is an old firm specialized in producing “Soshu daruma,” a papier-mache doll with a long-established tradition that dates back to the Keio era, more than 150 years ago. The shop makes an original animal-shaped daruma doll every year as a lucky charm for the new year. In the Chinese zodiac calendar, 2021 is the year of the ox, so it’s currently making the dolls in the shape of a milking cow. The local artisans paste several pieces of “washi” traditional paper … Continue reading

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