Dec 31, 2009

family trip

Every year, my family have a small trip in the end of December. Its aim is mainly to heal our bodies by bathing in "onsen".

This year, we went to "Harazuru-onsen"(原鶴温泉) in Fukuoka prefecture and stayed one night at a hotel. But, I could not enjoy this trip so much because of a severe problem in my family. (However, I am not in the mood for writing about it here.)

I took only above five photos. The first two are the hotel's dishes. And the second three are a honey bottle sold in a souvenir shop in the hotel. It contains a vespinae. The naming is a little bit funny, I think.

Dec 21, 2009

Christmas illumination

In this season, Christmas season, we can see illuminations in many places, including private house. This a nearby house with decorative lights.

I am not interested in decorating my house with this type of illumination, but I like seeing them.

Dec 13, 2009

good weather for surfers

Today, it was cloudy, and a little bit rainy. But, I rode my bike for about 2 hours in this bad condition.

However, I saw a lot of surfers enjoying this bad weather on my way. Big waves make it possible for them to ride surf boards.

Dec 9, 2009


Yesterday, I had a chance to listen to a lecture by a victim in "Matsumoto-sarin-incident"(松本サリン事件) that happened in 1994. He talked about his valuable and very hard experience in his speech. He was certainly one of victims, but at first the police and media had treated him as a suspect. And this wrong condition continued for about one year. He had become a true victim after the police announced that the true criminal were the believers in "Aum-Shinrikyou"(オウム真理教).

After the lecture, I saw a message written by the speaker in the hall. I was a little bit impressed with it. I try to translate it into English.


"Hate, or grudge lets your life something dull."
"To hate others, or to hold a grudge against others spoil a person's life."
I am not confident in this translation, so I welcome your correction.

Dec 1, 2009

"Saudi de Oo-ame"(flood in Saudi Arabia)

I have learned that it was heavily rained in the end of November in Saudi Arabia. The news said the amount of rain in the day was over the total amount of rain that they have in a usual year.

I wonder that it might be by the effect of climate change.

Nov 28, 2009

"hisashiburi"(for the first time in a long time)

IMG_2596.JPG, originally uploaded by bikenglish.

Today, I rode my bike for the first time in a long time. I had decided to abstain doing it for a while in order to treat acute hepatitis. I could not do it for about 45 days. It was a little bit cold, but fine, so I enjoyed it for about an hour.

Nov 25, 2009

a wedding ceremony

IMG_2561.JPG, originally uploaded by bikenglish.

Last Monday, I took part in my nephew-in-law's wedding ceremony. The bridegroom is 20 years old and the bride is 21 years old. So, they are a very young couple. They have a special reason to hurry their marriage, but I cannot write it here.

After the ceremony, the party called "Hirouen"(披露宴) in Japanese was held. It was filled with very happy atmosphere. But, unfortunately, there was an unpleasant thing to me in this party. The participants were permitted to smoke, there were a lot of smokers in the party. I don't have a habit to smoke and dislike it. Recently, in Japan, smoking is banned in almost public area. I inhaled bad air in a long time.

Nov 23, 2009

Obama's "ojigi"

Several media said American conservatives got angry after seeing this photo. They said that it seemed that Obama expressed apology to Japanese Emperor. But I don't think that most people in Japan thought so. They only thought he is a very polite man.

I also have learned that he said in an interview that "I would like to go to Hiroshima or Nagasaki in his this presidential term". I am very interested in whether he would express apology about using atomic bomb by the USA during World War 2 when he visit to Hiroshima or Nagasaki or not. Or, he does the visit without expressing any apology to create "the world without nuclear weapons"?

Nov 14, 2009

global warming creats a new kind of rice

Recently, I have learned a new kind of rice that was developed by a laboratory in Fukuoka prefecture. The rice's name is "geknki-tsukushi", and its feature is to resist hot summer and to produce good amount of rice with good taste.

These days, I often feel the influence of climate change. But, I am impressed with the effort of engineers in laboratory to develop the new rice that adjusts to climate change.

I have already eaten the rice, it is very good, I think.

I try to translate this Japanese sentence on the labeling information into English.


""geniki-tuskushis" is rice that is strong against global warming and tastes very good. In recent years, it has continued that the temperature in every August and September is higher than usual years under global warming. We have recognized a tendency that the shortage of rice piece makes rice's quality and taste. So, the agricultural laboratory in Fukuoka prefecture 【in my direct translation】(福岡県農業総合試験場) had started to develop a new kind of rice since 1998(平成20年), as the result of its efforts, the new rice that is strong against hot weather and good taste was born."

Nov 12, 2009

very expensive "Eda-mame"

On October 10, I took part in "Eda-mame-gari"(枝豆狩り) at "Syousuke-mura"(正助村) in Munakata-city with my daughter. The "Eda-mame-gari" is not so popular like "Mikan-gari"(みかん狩り), so this was my first experience. But, an accident happened before we got to "Syousuke-mura".

"Syousuke-mura" locates in countryside, so there aren't so many signals on its near roads, we can drive smoothly. On a straight part of a road, I drove my car over legal limits.

Suddenly, a police car appeared on my way. A police man stopped me. He said "you were speeding, 20km/h over, the fine is 15,000yen!!"

Of course, I regretted that I was speeding. But, I thought that I have to pay more attention to the speed during driving because recently I had a tendency to drive without considering legal limits.

People call this kind of patrol by police "nezumi-tori"(ネズミ捕り), a mouse trap, in their slung.

"Eda-mame-gari" was very enjoyable. Its fee was 500yen, a staff gave us a 80cm-long rope and said "you can get as many stems with "eda-mame" as you can tie them with the rope. Finally, we got a lot of "eda-mame" that was worth more than 2,000yen in store' price.

The day's evening, my friend who loves fishing gave me a fish named "matou-dai"(マトウダイ) that he fished on the day. I processed it into "sashimi"(刺身) and ate it with "eda-mame" at dinner.

*But, two days later, I developed acute hepatitis and convalesced at home for four weeks.

Oct 18, 2009

acute hepatitis

Last Thursday, I went to a nearby "clinic" to see a doctor because I could not recognize any improvement on my disease. He said that people who have got influenza have normally about five days high body temperature. "Do not mind!"

But, the blood tests showed the abnormal level of the ability of my liver.

Quickly, he introduced me another doctor in a relatively big hospital to get more detailed diagnosis.

Finally, a new doctor diagnosed my disease as "acute hepatitis" . He said that generally the main cause of acute hepatitis is by infection of virus, but in this case he could not identify it. The treatment policy is "to rest quietly", staying in a bed or sitting on a chair. There is no special treatment for it, like injection, drug.

I will go to the hospital tomorrow to see the doctor, hoping to hear good result of my blood tests.

10/19-----279----- 517----- 1106-----2.16-----306
*The last day, the doctor said me that "you are just recovering, you do not have to see me again."

Oct 12, 2009

New Infuenza

I might have got "New Influenza", my body temperature has been more than 38.5 Celsius.

Please wait for new archives until I will recover from this bad condition.

Oct 6, 2009


We often see a poster that shows a worker doing "ojigi"(お辞儀) at a construction site. But, last Sunday, I found a moving version of "ojigi" on a road. It is very interesting, I think.

Oct 4, 2009


Yesterday, I took three women to "Hirodai" to see "susuki". They are about thirty years old, but do not have "steady" a significant other,so they are seeking good relationship with a man. So, in this excursion, there was another purpose that I gave a chance them to meet with good men.

But, this time, I was sorry that I could not introduce suitable men to them. I will make another meeting chance to them at the end of November.

However, I was a little bit satisfied with that day's result because they seemed to enjoy the nature of "Hirao-dai" in spite of the lack of good meeting. I took several photos and you can see them on my web album.

Sep 29, 2009

My new bike got here!

I had ordered a bike shop to replace the frame of my bike from "Klein" to "Anchor". The new bike came on last Sunday!

The Klein's frame is made from aluminum, so it is a little bit bold to keep its strength. I had wanted a thinner frame bike because I thought that it looks better.

The new frame is made from chromium molybdenum steel that is said to keep strength with thinner pipe. The frame maker is "Anchor" that is a well-known company, Bridgestone's bland name for bike.

I have not yet ridden this bike for a long ride, I am looking forward to riding it next Sunday.

Sep 22, 2009


Several days ago, I found "Ashinaga-bachi no su"(アシナガバチの巣), paper wasp's nest in my house's garden when I got rid of weeds. It had very good size, so I took this photo.

Paper wasp is said a kind of "Eki-chu"(益虫) in Japan because it catches caterpillars in fields to eat them. In this case, "Eki" means "beneficial" and "chu" means "insect".

P.S. I have learned this word "paper wasp" just when I would write this article. But, in this case, I think that the Japanese word "Ashinaga-bachi" gets its feature better than the English.

Sep 19, 2009


Last Thursday, I came across this article in Asahi newspaper. I thought it was a little bit interesting. We often can see this type of headline using "word play".

In this case, the chairman told the mayor not to chew gum during the mayor's speech. In Japanese, "議長は市長に対して「答弁中は(チュウイン)ガムをかまないように」と注意した"(gichou-wa-shichou-ni-taishite-toubenchu-wa-gamu-wo-kamanaiyouni-to-chuui-shita). The writer used this headline because both word's pronunciation are similar.

Sep 16, 2009


Yesterday, I found these "Higan-bana"(彼岸花) in the neighborhood. "Higan-bana" is a representative flower in this season, but it is a little bit earlier than usual, I think. We often see the flower near a rice paddy.

In my Japanese-English dictionary, "Higan" is translated into "the equinoctial week". In this period, most people in Japan visit their family grave to honor their ancestors.

P.S. There is a song named "Man-jyu-sya-ka"(曼珠紗華). "Momoe Yamaguchi"(山口百恵)" sung it and "Man-jyu-sya-ka" is another name of "Higan-bana".

Sep 12, 2009

Jero sings "Kiku-masamune"

When I heard his this song on a TV program, I was a lttle impressed that he is a very talented "Enka-kasyu"(演歌歌手). How dou you feel from it?

Sep 8, 2009


I have loaned $50 to small entrepreneurs in developing countries through "Kiva". $26.04 has been repaid, and I withdrew $15 from it. This time, I decided to buy a wristband and a lanyard by using it and I received them on this Monday.

I have learned about "Kiva" through the VOA Special English. It is a very good way to support people in developing countries, I think.

Sep 6, 2009

a stranger's visit

Last night, my daughter found a bat in my house before going to bed. I captured it and released it out of my house.

I was sorry that I had not taken a movie of a bat circling in a room.

Sep 5, 2009


IMG_2665.JPG, originally uploaded by bikenglish.

A group of women at my work office have a self-learning class for "Ikebana"(生け花), flower arrangement, every Thursday. It is a good way to enjoy every day life, I think.

I will continue to add photos of "Ikebana" to my "photostream".

Aug 29, 2009


Now, I can find songs named "Shiroi-Kusuri" in Youtube. A "Vocaloid" sings changed lyrics on a melody of "Aoi-usagi" that is Noriko Sakai's hit song. Of course, it tells her story about illegal drug.

I think this is the best one of several versions.

Aug 25, 2009

a scene in a train

I took this photo in a train this morning. If he sitted in the seat in right form, and right young man placed his bag on his knees, three person could sit in their seats.

Aug 23, 2009

"Nori-pi" beat out "politics"

Campaigning for Aug. 30 Lower House election officially started on Aug. 19. But, ordinary people (including me) are more interested in the "Nori-pi" issue than politics.

This is an ad of a Japanese popular weekly magazine named "Syuukan-Bunshun"(週刊文春) that I came across on Aug. 20. I thought that it is interesting that "Nori-pi" issues occupied more space than the prediction for seats of Lower House when I saw it. Japan is a very peaceful country, and I like this situation very much.

"Nori-pi" is a nickname of actress Noriko Sakai who was arrested on Aug.9 on suspicion of possessing illegal stimulants.

This time, I try to explain about "Manmosu-rari-pi" that you can find in upper-right place in this ad.

Noriko Sakai used to use her unique speaking style called "Nori-pi-go"(のりピー語) when she acted as a pop idol. In "Nori-pi-go", if you want to say that "I am very happy"((わたしは)とてもうれしいです。), it is translated into "(I am) Manmosu-ure-pi"(マンモスうれピー).

Manmosu is "mammoth" that means "very". And "pi"(ピー) is placed for the last part of "ureshii"(うれしい), "shii"(しい).

"Rari" is a very slung word. We use this word to express a condition that people look very drunken because of some drug. It is used usually as a verb,"rari-ru"(ラリる).

But, an adjective, "rari-sii" does not exist, so "Manmosu-rari-pi" is not right expression in "Nori-pi-go". But, the writer of a magazine used it as a kind of "word play".

P.S. I have another explanation about "Monmosu-rari-pi". An idol once called "Nori-pi" has become a suspect who is said to use illegal drug. So, now, "Nori-pi" become "Rari-pi".

Aug 17, 2009

a view from riding a bike

I have been considering a way to tell you about enjoyable riding on my home course. The answer, at this time is this movie.
Yesterday, I took this by operating a digital camera in my left hand while feeling a little bit risk. I will try this method for other good scenery.

Aug 15, 2009


On July 31, I took part in a class named "Seikatsu-syuukanbyou-yobou-kyoushitsu"(生活習慣病予防教室). It was held for employees that might suffer some kind of diseases like diabetes, high-blood pressure, brain strokes if they do not improve their activities in every day life. I am in good health and do not need to take part in it, but I did because of my interest.

The class was formed of four parts. The first and second programs were lectures by public health nurse(保健師) and dietitian(栄養士). And third was a light exercise led by a sports trainer. In last program, we including the staffs ate "Heatlhy Bentou"(ヘルシー弁当).

In Japan, the cost for health care has been increasing, so people between 40 to 74 ages should be tested in hospitals or other health care centers to prevent "Seikatsu-syuukan-byou". But, this program has just started, there are a lot of people who have not been tested.

Aug 10, 2009


Last Saturday and Sunday, I had a roadtrip with my family to an "onsen" in Kumamoto prefecture(熊本県). The accommodation where we stayed locates in an area named "Ota-onsen"(小田温泉) near famous "Kurokawa-onsen"(黒川温泉).

I took several photos in this trip. There are not interesting scenes in these photos, but you can see beautiful "green" in Japan in this season.

Aug 4, 2009

Pelosi has already visited Hiroshima

In recent days, Recently, I often come across the query of whether Obama will visit Hiroshima find a question that the visit to Hiroshima by Obama will realize or not. This dispute can be seen in media in Japan many times after the President refereed in Plague about the responsibly of the USA that used the first atomic bomb.

By the way, I have learned that Nancy Pelosi has already visited Hiroshima last year when I read the article in Asahi several days ago. I had never known the fact by that time. As my excuse, most of people in Japan paid their attention to the sudden resignation of the former prime minister when Pelosi visited Hiroshima.

In this article, she said that "it was a very impressive tour. I would like to take my family members there next time." This visit is a private one, not an official? I am a little bit surprised at her this saying.

If she was really impressed with the exhibit at Hiroshima, she should say that "I strongly recommend the next president to visit Hiroshima."

Aug 1, 2009


I have already learned about Sotomayor from a VOA's special English program. But, I could not understand the following sentence included in it completely. "I would hope that a wise Latina woman with the richness of her experiences would more often than not reach a better conclusion than a white male who hasn't lived that life." It is not easy to understand this part because of "doubled negative expression", I think.

But, this time, I have found this article in Asahi newspaper and I confirmed that the meaning I got from it is correct. However, another question has left in my mind. Why did she use these expression? I think that she should say that "a person with a good experience would reach a good conclusion, regardless of his, or her race and sex".

Jul 30, 2009


<span class=IMG_2448.JPG">
Last week end, "Tobata-gion-oo-yamagasa"(戸畑祇園大山笠) was held in Tobata ward, city of Kitakyushu. I was invited to my former boss's home party to watch this event from his room in a high apartment. This party was held last year in the same way.

But, when several "chochin-yamagasa"(提灯山笠) had been built up and the most exciting time in this event had just started, the heavy rain came. All candle lights in "chochin" went out, we could not watch the great scene because of bad weather.

Jul 27, 2009


On July 17, I worked as an extra staff for "Kuki-no-umi-hanabi-no-saiten"(くきのうみ花火の祭典). I could watch the fireworks at very near point.

In this season, fireworks festivals are held in several places in Japan.

Jul 23, 2009

Issey Miyake

Issey Miyake is a well-known, Japanese designer. Recently, he has posted an article about his tragic experience on the atomic bomb explosion and has called for Obama's visiting in Hiroshima.

Recent news says that president Obama is seeking to create peaceful world without nuclear weapons. If he want to progress this difficult problem, America cannot help avoiding to face the fact, I think. It means that America is an only country that used atomic bombs as weapon and Japan is an only country where many people were killed by the first atomic bomb.

Visiting to Hiroshima by American president might have happen in near future.

Jul 20, 2009


IMG_2402.JPG, originally uploaded by bikenglish.

Yesterday, I ate "ton-soku"(豚足) baked by charcoal fire at our family BBQ. "Ton" means pig, and "soku" means foot, so it is a foot of a pig.

Jul 19, 2009

like wearing gloves

IMG_2349.JPG, originally uploaded by bikenglish.

When I went last fishing, I wore covers on both arms to avoid sunburn. But I had no protection on my hands. So, my hands have looked like wearing gloves.

Jul 15, 2009


On July 9, I went fishing with two my friends. A friend has shared a small fishing boat with his friends. This time, he used this boat for our fishing.

The weather was cloudy, and wave and wind were a little bit strong. After about one hour from our start, we moved to the safer place because of strong wind and wave. At this point, I did not think that we could get any fishes.

But, "our fishing" just started about one hour later. Finally, we got more than 90 "Aji"(鯵) were about 20-cm-sized .

Return to the land, after come back to home, I processed several of them to eat as "sashimi"(刺身)(row fish) and "shio-yaki"(塩焼き)(baked fish) . And I gave the rest to my parents and my former boss. The day's dinner was very good because of our good results.

Jul 8, 2009


IMG_2329.JPG, originally uploaded by bikenglish.

People in Japan often use a little bit changed name from the original name to attract other's attention. It is a kind of "word play"(言葉遊び).

Last Sunday, I found this small sign in MacDonald's shop. This is a name of a meal coupon that is worth of 20,000yen (but you can buy it in only 12,000yen.)

The Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications (総務省)has translated "Teigaku Kyufu-kin"(定額給付金) into "Supplementary Income Payments". It says that their objectives are
to support the livelihoods of residents in Japan in order to alleviate peoples’ concerns during this recession and to contribute in stimulating local economies by issuing to residents throughout Japan.

In this case, a
Kanji character "給(kyuu)" is replaced with another character "牛(gyuu)". "給"means "payment", and "牛"means "cattle". MacDonald has several goods made from beef, so the stuff has used "牛" in this word.

Jul 2, 2009


Several days ago, I found an article that Japanese ambassador to USA apologized on May thirtieth in person to the 73 surviving POWs of the Bataan Death March during the WWⅡ. But, a question remained in my mind after I read it. "Why do only Japan have to apologize to the victims during that war?". It doesn't mean to deny the importance of apology to the POWs.

Now, I have studied "what had happened in the 1930-1945 " from reading books that deal with them. On my now thought, if Japan have to apologize to the victims of all cruel incidents that Japan did during that war, the USA should apologize to a lot of civilians who were killed by two atomic bombs and many firebombs. Now, we have to examine all historical things that led to the WWⅡon a neutral position to create the peaceful world without threat of nuclear weapons, really I think.

By the way, the American ambassador to Japan has not been decided yet. I wonder what makes decision delayed. The Asahi newspaper said that John V. Roos is a possible candidate to that job. It said that the Obama administration nominated him because of his financial support to Obama's presidential campaign. He is a well-known lawyer, but does not have good knowledge about Japan, it said. Probably, he cannot speak Japanese.

At first, I had been disappointed that a person that do not have good experience on Japan can become an ambassador to Japan. But, later I understood this situation. It means that USA do not consider this position is very important because there are not any outstanding conflicts between two countries. It seems that USA does not think that Japan is a tough negotiator to it. I would like to hear a new American ambassador to Japan apologize in Japanese to the victims of atomic bombs in the future.

Jun 27, 2009


IMG_2297.JPG, originally uploaded by bikenglish.
Today, I received home-made "Rakkyo"(らっきょう) from my parents. "Rakkyo" is a kind of Japanese traditional pickles. It has unique smell, so some people don't like it.

Jun 21, 2009

"Kujyu" and "Yume-oo-tsurihashi"

Last weekend, I went to "Kujyu" with my old friends. "Kujyu" is a very popular place among people who love mountain climbing. I have taken several photos of this mountain area.

We arrived at Tyojabaru vistor center"(長者原ビジターセンター) at about 1pm on Saturday. After a short rest with simple lunch, we started climbing. We walked along a route for about 3hours, it was not hard course because we had still arrived at high level point. We saw several famous places in this area that include "Hokkein-onsen"(法華院温泉),"Sugamori-goya"(スガモリ小屋),"Bouga-tsuru"(坊ガツル). We enjoyed very good mountain view and beautiful green.

Back to mountain foot, and after healing our bodies at an onsen, we had a BBQ dinner outdoor near our member's log cabin where we stayed that day.

Next day, we visited "yume-oo-tsurihashi"(九重夢大吊橋). I found a Taiwanese tour group among a lot of visitors.

The bridge is built above a deep valley. We saw two waterfalls from this bridge. We also enjoyed great natural view there.

After that, we headed toward our home.

Jun 17, 2009

Today, a portal navigation device has arrived. I ordered it to a shop through the Internet. Its price is about 30,000yen. Recently, we have received "teigaku-kyufu-kin"(定額給付金)(in my translation, "subsidy to each family from the government") that totals 64,000yen , so we have decided to buy it.

Jun 16, 2009


A famous novelist, Haruki(春樹) Murakami(村上) has recently released a novel named "1Q84"(ich-kyu-haci-yon) . Several days ago, I have learned that an idea from "1984" written by George Orwell let him to write a new book .

I read "1984", but I have no plan to read "1Q84", because I don't like Haruki Murakami's works.

Jun 15, 2009

Lifelog of a man in Japan

I have started a photo diary(写真日記) named "Lifelog of a man in Japan" on the Internet. To post photos, I use a device, "EYE-FI CARD". I will continue this album for a while.

Jun 14, 2009

"Haimaya Bridge"2

I have already written a comment about a movie named "Haimaya Bridge". This time, I post a review about it from Asahi Newspaper. It has praised the movie very much.

I try to translate the last part of this comment.

偏見、差別、愛、家族→Prejudice, discrimination, love, family
重くて大きなテーマである。→These are heavy and huge theme.
といって、ここには硬直した感覚はみじんもない。→But, there are no inflexibile sense at all, here.
なによりも、ウルフォーク監督の心優しい視線が心地よい。→ The most remarkable thing is that we can feel comfortable from the warm "eyes" of the director, Woolfolk.

(If you know better expression in English, please tell me about it. )

Jun 13, 2009


I have bought "EYE-FI CARD" after I learned it through reading a book named "Cloud Computing"(クラウド・コンピューティング). It was a purchase without considering(衝動買い).

Now, I will start a public "lifelog of a man in Japan" by using this device on the Internet.

Jun 7, 2009


Last Saturday, I visited my son's high school with my wife and daughter. My son belongs to its wind orchestra band, our main aim was to see its performance in the school festival(文化祭).

The number of band members is about three times as large as one of the junior high school that he used to belong to. So, we enjoyed their performance very well.

A very interesting thing were sold at the festival and we bought it. It is a "saiku-kamaboko"(細工かまぼこ). "Kamaboko" is a processed food made from fish meat. "Saiku-kamaboko" is a decorative "kamaboko", of course, we can eat it.