Monthly Archives: September 2011

Day two (part 3) – Hanamaki and Morioka

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Hanamaki and the Sasakis Thur, 22nd Sep. After Hiraizumi we jumped on the expressway heading north towards Hanamaki (famous for its onsen) and Morioka. As a resident of the disaster area, Yuka had an official certificate in the glove box … Continue reading

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Day two (part 2) – Hiraizumi World Heritage Site

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Thur, 22nd Sep. In my 1991 edition of the Lonely Planet Guide to Japan, Iwate only gets seven pages of which one is a full-page map. Two of those pages are dedicated to Hiraizumi and its principal tourist attractions, Chuzon-ji … Continue reading

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Day two (part 1) – Daito to Hiraizumi

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Thur, 22nd 2011. By the time we woke on Thursday, Typhoon No. 15 has passed over and the skies were clear. That bode well for our planned visit to Hiraizumi. However, the early morning news reports showed a trail of … Continue reading

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Day one (part 2) – Sleepover in Daito

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Wed, 21st Sep. It was a close call. My shinkansen got to Ichinoseki at 16.21 by which time Typhoon No.15 was also heading up Tohoku and all trains scheduled to go north had been canceled. Waiting for me at the … Continue reading

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Day one (part 1) – Back to Iwate

Wed, 21st Sep.Today my trip starts in earnest. I’m up at 5am finishing yesterday’s blog and dealing with emails which have come in overnight. At 7.30am I head downstairs to the lobby for breakfast. It’s a mixture of Japanese and … Continue reading

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Day 0 – (part 2) Back in Japan

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The flight from San Francisco to Tokyo is packed as usual – a triple code share heading for Bangkok via Narita. The Japanese fight attendants take excellent care of us (even the ones down the back). The feeling of “Welcome … Continue reading

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Day 0 – (part 1) Departure

So here we go. Omiyage (presents) are bought and bags are packed. Omiyage gifts. I hope I didn’t forget anyone…. Bags packed and ready for the off…

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interlude – chopsticks

The first time I recall using chopsticks was the ‘Handover Ceremony’ in Morioka. After Tokyo Orientation we were whisked off to our respective Prefectures and on the final day a teacher from each of our host schools came to pick … Continue reading

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Works (& Play)

I saw my first Wadaiko (Japanese drum) performance at Kamaishi Festival in Sep’92. The drums were set up on the docks right against the water with a backdrop of the open sea. The powerful rhythms reverberated off the cavernous walls … Continue reading

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six

In the month following the earthquake I scoured the internet for news of anybody I had known in Ohtsuchi and Kamaishi. I had no email addresses or cell numbers so I searched my old address books and Nengajo (New Year’s … Continue reading

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