Saturday, July 21, 2007

Kugenuma Seaside

Probably 鵠沼海岸 is hard Kanji to read even for Japanese. 鵠沼海岸(Kugenuma Kaigan) is in Fujisawa city in Kanagawa prefecture. Some of you many know 湘南海岸(Shonan Kaigan), and Kugenuma Kaigan is so close to the beach.

Both Kugenuma Kaigan and Shonan Kaigan are very well-known as surfing beach. You can see people surfing all the time but winter; since spring to autumn. More photos.

I went Kugenuma Kaigan for the first time with my colleagues. It took about one hour by train from Yokohama, and it takes 25 minutes walk from 鵠沼海岸駅(Kugenuma Kaigan Station).

The day was not enough to go into the water; I was wearing swimming suits though. However, I enjoyed its summer and beach air a lot. Amazingly, there were so many crams in the sand, of course alive ones, and we even could see fish swimming at the shallows. Numerous seagulls were hunting those fish. That was pretty much summer beach. Here is interesting movie I took. A cram is escaping into the sand!

On August, there will be people at Kugenuma Kaigan and Shonan Kaigan. I know Shonan Kaigan is so famous and be crowded a lot, just like as no place to even sit down! However, Kugenuma has much room to relax and time your own beach time. You can check what Kugenuma Kaigan is like with live camera.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

A Holiday Unique To Japan

In Japan, there is a Day called '海の日’. 海の日 is one of Japanese national holidays and called “Marine Day” in English. The point of the day is to appreciate the blessing of ocean and wish prosperity of Marine country, Japan. 海の日 was just an anniversary(the day used to be called “海の記念日/Umi-no-kinembi” at the time) but turned into national holiday in 1996. 海の日 is on the third Monday in July, so this year is July 16th.

According to the description of the Ministry of Land, “Japan is the only one country in the world that has Marine day as a national holiday.” Since the 海の日 is a sort of new holiday in Japan, we have few event on the day. We may be able to celebrate this day by eating fish, going out the ocean, or even clean up the beaches. Anyway, Japanese people should thank to the ocean surrounds the country. The environment created this culture and developed people. Thanks, 海の日!

This pictures were taken at "海の公園(Umi-no-kouen)". 海の公園 is in Yokohama, Kanagawa prefecture, and the beach is really close to my living place! This beach is the only one beach for swimming in Yokohama. I sometimes go there with my friend to relax. I took this pictures on April 30th...amazing.

Here is the list of Japanese national holidays.

Saturday, July 07, 2007

Love Romance Beyond The Milky Way

What would you do if you are allowed to meet the person you love only one time per year? You may go crazy or give up the relationship? There is a couple(stars) who meet each other annual year, on July 7th legends concerning the Tanabata(七夕) festival in Japan.

Orihime(織姫) and Hikoboshi(彦星) have such a long long distance relationship in the milky way. Orihime is daughter of the Lord of Heaven, and she was hard worker. Hikoboshi also worked hard everyday. The Lord of Heaven approved two young couples marriage one day. However, they prefer to their married life, and became lazy and stop working. The Lord of Heaven was furious with them and made them separate beyond the Milky Way, only allowed to meat one time on July 7th though. Then, July 7 is celebrated two stars and called, Tanabata(七夕).

People celebrate Tanabata festival having bamboo with Tanzaku(短冊), a strip of fancy paper written people’s wish on it. Here is the picture. It is said your wish comes true if you write your wish on Tanzaku.

Today, there will appear great Milky Way if the weather is good. What do you wish on Tanabata?

Sunday, July 01, 2007

Yokohama Chinatown

There are Chinatown mainly in Nagasaki, Hyogo and Kanagawa prefecture in Japan. It is like an illusion that you are in the country, China once you step in Chinatown. And, one of very fascinating Chinatown in Japan is in Yokohama, called Yokohama Chukagai(横浜中華街). It is huge Chinatown and famous sightseeing sport in Kanagawa.

626 stores; restaurants, suvenior stores, general shops gather in Yokohama Chinotown. It covers an area of 500 square meters, and the length of Main Street is about 300 meters.

There are several Chinese festivals held in Chinatown through the year. Especially, Shunsetsu is big and most important event which celebrate New Year following the old calendar for Chinese people.
Yokohama Chinatown

I have been there so many times but I still can’t figure all stores out yet. That means you are never tired of being there!

If you discover Yokohama Chinatown, it is better to have its map with you. To find stores you want to visit, to know where you are and not to lost there, you should take the map (especially, if you are new ther)

Here are several photos of Yokohama Chinatown.

(If you prefer Chinatown map in Japanese, Here it is)