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Ghibli Expo Hiroshima: From Nausicaä to Marnie

August 28, 2018 by Matt Mangham

It’s no secret that one of Japan’s chief exports is its popular culture, and the films of Studio Ghibli rank high with pop culture aficionados around the world. Ghibli’s twenty-one feature films (the Expo includes Nausicaä, which will be controversial to some purists) offer something for everyone, spanning material from the brutal Grave of the […]

Full Moon Tea Ceremony at Shukkei-en in Hiroshima

August 28, 2018 by Matt Mangham

Tsukimi, or Moon Viewing, is a Japanese tradition going back to the Heian period, when portions of the old Chinese mid-Autumn festivals blended with local practices to create one more reason for the aristocracy of Kyoto to stay up all night. The classic portrayal of the Heian Moon Viewing Party includes courtesans reclining in small […]

Tokyo Java: Why Are Indie Coffee Shops Opening All Over The Metropolis?

April 26, 2018 by Jason Gatewood

We’ll forgive you for thinking Japan was all about the green tea if you’ve never been here before. Of course we pride ourselves on having over a hundred varieties of o-cha you can drink, and the image of a kimono-clad stern performer of tea ceremony is forever burned into our memory banks of what iconography […]

Calling 119 for Emergency Assistance in Japan

March 20, 2018 by Ray Proper

Dial 119 for fire department or medical services Dial 110 for police 119 in Japan is a direct-dial free emergency number that connects the caller to fire and emergency medical services from any phone.  Unlike emergency number services in many other countries, the 119 system in Japan only connects to fire or ambulance services.  Police are […]

The Danjiri Matsuri in Osaka is a Multi-Generational Thrill Show

September 14, 2017 by Justin Hanus

Autumn means the biggest event of the year for the southern Osaka city of Kishiwada – the Danjiri Matsuri. Danjiri are large wooden carts inside which religious tenets declare gods reside. The point of the festival is to honor the gods by having fleets of neighborhood men pull the carts – some of which can […]

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