Search results for 'statue'

New Hachiko statue in Tokyo…with his master!

12 Feb

Japan loves Hachiko! There are already two other statues of this beloved dog in Japan (only one statue is well-known).
My post about the dog and the statue in Shibuya:
(I want to see this new statue at Univ of Tokyo!)

Statues and dolls

26 Feb

There are many interesting statues around Japan…especially in or near train stations.

Often they are of a famous person who lived in the area, a cartoon character whose story took place in that area, or of something or someone that the area is famous for.

I have taken photos of many statues around Japan over the years…maybe oneday I’ll go through them and make a post about them all—but for now, here are just a few that I’ve taken with my ケータイ (cell-phone) camera:

両津勘吉 (Ryoutsukankichi)

両津勘吉 (Ryoutsukankichi)

At 御宿 (Onjuku, Chiba, Japan)

At 御宿 (Onjuku, Chiba, Japan)







I’ve got many more photos of statues…as I wrote above, maybe I’ll write another blog-post later about them all.

Next Tuesday (March 3rd) is ひな祭 (Doll Festival).

On this day, families with daughters set up elaborate sets of dolls of Japanese royalty, and eat a special type of 寿司 (sushi) called ちらし寿司 (Chirashizushi).

I have three daughters, so of course we have a ひな祭の人形 (Doll Festival dolls) set.

Click here to read my FAQ about ひな祭 (Doll Festival).

ひな祭りの人形 (Doll Festival set)

ひな祭りの人形 (Doll Festival set)

Statue Of Liberty

31 Aug

Everyone knows the symbol of America, the Statue Of Liberty (or the full name: the Statue Of Liberty Enlightening The World, or in Japanese 自由の女神像 (which would translate to Statue of the Liberty Goddess).

But many visitors to Japan are surprised to see the 自由の女神像 (Statue of Liberty) in Tokyo. Like the one in NYC, it was a gift from France.

I’ve seen the one in New York and, of course, the one in Tokyo (pictured above)…but I was surprised to learn (from this Wikipedia site: in English or 日本語) that there replicas of the 自由の女神像 (Statue of Liberty) all over the world.

How many of them have you seen?


Wanna see some more various photos that I’ve taken at different times / places around Tokyo?

靖国神社 (Yasukuni Shrine):

ミルクスタンド (Milk stand) at a train station. (If you buy a drink at one of these, it comes in a glass bottle. You stand there and finish the drink, then return the bottle. You’re not supposed to walk off with the drink):

In a supermarket:

The 大船観音 (Oofuna-Kannon) statue near 鎌倉 (Kamakura):

The first Hard Rock Cafe, Tokyo in 六本木 (Roppongi). When I came to Japan, it was the only HRC in Japan. Now there’s eight or nine around Japan, including two more in Tokyo (well, one of those isn’t actually in Tokyo…the Hard Rock Cafe, Narita Tokyo is in 千葉県成田市 (Narita, Chiba) near Tokyo.

Actually, I don’t eat at HRC.

At 三渓園 (Sankeien Gardens) in 横浜 (Yokohama):


13 Mar
Click on a name to read the interview:

  1. Steve “Lips” Kudlow — (of rock band “Anvil”)) — 2021 Nov 11
  2. Andres Nuiver — (rock musician (has lived in Japan)) — 2019 August 5
  3. Roger Dahl — (cartoonist / author (Japan-related)) — 2015 March 19
  4. Matt Alt — (author (Japan-related)) — 2014 Sept 16
  5. Rachel Bolan — (rock musician) — 2014 March 06
  6. Bryan Maine — (author (Japan-related)) — 2012 Nov 19
  7. Alan Merrill — (musician) — 2011 July 19
  8. Lydia Criss — (author (and ex-wife of KISS drummer)) — 2010 May 23
  9. Jason McMaster — (musician) — 2010 April 21
  10. Earnest Mercer — (author (Japan-related)) — 2010 April 10
  11. Bruce Kulick — (musician (second interview)) — 2010 Feb 20
  12. Bob Gruen — (photographer (KISS-related)) — 2009 Dec 10
  13. Victor Stabin — (artist (KISS album cover)) — 2009 Nov 12
  14. Michael Doret — (artist (second interview)) — 2009 Aug 18
  15. Michael Doret — (artist (KISS album cover)) — 2009 Apr 22
  16. Jerry Yellin — (WW2 veteran (Japan-related)) — 2008 Sept 9
  17. Ken Alley — (author (Japan-related)) — 2008 Sept 7
  18. Bruce Kulick — (musician (former member of KISS)) — 2008 Sept 01
  19. Fred Bensi — (musician (KISS-related)) — 2008 July 20


    • Steve Kudlow is the vocalist and lead guitarist of the Canadian heavy-metal band Anvil.
    • They formed in 1978 and have never broken up the band or quit playing even though they never reached the level of fame of some of the bands they’ve been an inspiration to, such as Metallica.
    • anvil
    • Here is a short interview he did with me (via email) on November 11, 2021.
    • 1. Could you give us a self-introduction, please?

      I’m known as Steve LIPS Kudlow,  I  sing and play lead guitar for the band “Anvil“.

      2. In the beginning of the documentary about your band “The Story of Anvil” the members of your band are working jobs such as lunch delivery and construction.
      Are you still working these jobs?
      It’s been 13 years since we last worked a regular job. The releasing of the Anvil movie changed our lives forever!
      (“The Story of Anvil” documentary poster).
      3.  Do you have any regrets about getting into the music industry?
      Absolutely no regrets!! When you’re doing what you love there’s never any regrets!!
      4. What bands / songs were you fans of growing up?  What music / albums do you listen to these days?
      Black Sabbath, Deep Purple,  UFO, Scorpions, Ted Nugent, Montrose, Jethro Tull, Emerson, Lake and Palmer, Grand Funk, Thin Lizzy, Captain Beyond, Budgie, Motorhead, Humble Pie, Robin Trower, Frank Marino, April Wine, Cactus…and many other 60s and 70s hard rock bands.
      5. How many times have you been to Japan?  When was the most recent time?
      I think 7 times and the last time was 2 years ago just before Covid.
    • chirashi
    • (Flyer for the Anvil “Meet and Greet” after their show in Japan, 2019.).
    • 6. When you’ve been to Japan, were you able to do any sightseeing?   (May I see photos you’ve taken here?)
      Yes, particularly the last visit. Went to Mount Fuji . Also saw a shop with my name on it!!
    • lips
    • (A photo sent to me by “Lips” Ludlow of himself standing in front of  a bar named “Lips” in Tokyo.)
    • 7. Did you experience any culture shock in Japan?
      No, not at all. 
      8. How do the fans in Japan compare to those in other countries?
      I never compare …each country is unique and in fact every audience has it’s own personality regardless of where the show is.
      9. Do you receive a lot of fan-mail from Japan?
      No more or less than anywhere else!!
      10.  Do you have a message for visitors to my blog?
      We plan to return within the next year or two after the pandemic has ended and we release our 19th studio album!!

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Kawagoe Festival

19 Oct

川越 (Kawagoe) is a town in 埼玉県 (Saitama Prefecture) north of Tokyo.

Kawagoe has many old traditional temples, shrines, statues and other structures standing, so it is nicknamed 「小江戸」 (Ko-Edo), whcih means “Little Edo” (Edo was Tokyo’s name centuries ago).

Kawagoe has connections to the first shogun, Ieyasu. When the shogun died, his remains were brought to Nikko for burial. On the way there, a ceremony was held at a temple in Kawagoe.
Ieyasu died 400 years ago…so this year’s annual Kawagoe Festival was special.

The Kawagoe Festival was held yesterday and the day before. We went to it yesterday. (Click here to see this images in a slideshow):

Quarter Century!

17 Oct

On 1990 October 17th, I came to Japan from America. Twenty-five years ago today!
I have been living in Japan longer than I lived in the U.S.

Twenty-five years already! 1990 doesn’t feel like it was all that long ago…but twenty-five before 1990 was 1965 and that was before I was even born! America saw a lot of changes between 1965 and 1990…and Japan has seen many changes since 1990.

I wrote a post on this date last year and told about some of the many changes I’ve seen in Japan since I first arrived.
(Click here to read it.)

In this post, to mark the quarter-century that I’ve been living in Japan, I decided to list (in no particular order) twenty-five reasons that I love living in Tokyo. (Many of them have to do with the fact that Japan is a very safe place to raise children!)

    1. No guns – I dislike guns and see no reason for “common people” to own one. In Japan, only the military, the police and hunters (after passing an extensive testing and screening procedure) legally have guns. The Japanese police are armed, but very rarely draw their weapon…it would be an absolute last resort.So, there aren’t shootings in Japan. I witnessed a deadly shooting at my high school in Florida when I was a teenager…that’s something I never wanted my children to experience.
    2. Low crime rate – Tokyo is a huge, densely-populated metropolitan city…but still has very little crime.
    3. Punctuality – Everything and everyone is on time. Trains, and even city buses, arrive on the scheduled time. Almost 100% of the time.
    4. Convenient – There are so many stores, restaurants, and services in Tokyo! You can get anything you need…without going too far.
    5. Health care – Health insurance in Japan pays for 70% of hospital, clinic, dental and ambulance costs.
    6. School system – I wrote a post about how I feel that Japanese schools are better than American ones.
    7. Prices – Many people have an image that Japan is very expensive. But, in my experience, it’s mostly cheaper than America! Amusement parks, movie tickets, groceries, restaurant meals, haircuts, and on and on are all similarly priced, or even cheaper than, in America! Gasoline is about the only thing priced lower in America.
    8. Restaurants – The restaurants in Japan are well-known for being the best! Everything from fast-food to family restaurants to gourmet establishments all have excellent food and service. There are more Michelin starred restaurants in Tokyo than any other city in the world!
    9. Convenience stores – Japanese convenience stores are great! You can get beer, whiskey, snacks, hot meals, and more 24 hours a day. But also…you can buy postage stamps, concert tickets, mail packages, pay bills, and use an ATM.
    10. Vending machines – Japanese vending machines are everywhere and they sell all kinds of things: hot drinks and cold drinks (such as tea, coffee, water, juice, cola and beer), umbrellas, stamps, snacks, fruit, and much more. They accept payment by coin, ¥1000 bill (about US$10), cell-phone, or IC card. Many have digital displays that show the weather forecast and use facial recognition to recommend a drink.
    11. Kindness -Even in a big city such as Tokyo, you can often see acts of kindness shown to others.
    12. Thoughtfulness – Japanese people are very good at considering other people’s feelings, and that makes living in a densely populated city much easier.
    13. Politeness – Japanese are well-known for their politeness.
    14. Sightseeing – Modern architecture, traditional castles, shrines and temples, and beautiful nature…Japan has a lot to see.
    15. Amusement parks – Japan has all kinds of amusement parks…big, small, water parks, and theme parks. Probably most well-know is Tokyo Disneyland and Disney Sea…they’re the only Disney parks in the world that aren’t owned by Disney. Rather, they’re owned by a Japanese company and licensed from Disney. Tokyo Disneyland is actually a lot cheaper than Florida’s Disney World!
    16. Service – Service is always top-notch in Japan. Even at fast-food restaurants and convenience stores!
    17. Quality – Even Daiso (Japan’s version of a “dollar store”) sells quality merchandise.
    18. Statues and robotsGundam (both a statue and a “life-size” robot), Statue of Liberty, Godzilla, Hachiko, and so many more. I’ve written many posts, with photos…click here.
    19. Four seasons – I grew up in Florida. There’s no snow, no colorful autumn leaves…basically only one season there. I know many places in the world have four seasons…but many don’t. And in Tokyo, each season is an even 1/4 of the year. And each season in Japan is so unique!
    20. Festivals – There are so many excellent festivals in Japan! I’m a member of a great one! (Click here to see photos).
    21. Museums – Museums of art, Japan’s history, ramen, cartoon characters, beetles, and so many more! They’re all so interesting!
    22. Peaceful and quiet – Tokyo can be noisy, but generally, Japan (even the big cities such as Tokyo) are nice and quiet! Have you ever ridden a train in Japan. Most people don’t talk…and the ones who are talking do so quietly. It’s nice.
    23. No tipping – Not restaurants, not hotels, nor barbers or taxis. Leaving a tip isn’t done in Japan.
    24. Unique areas – Different cities and areas of Japan are unique. But, not only that…even in Tokyo, the different areas are unique. Ginza, Akihabara, Shibuya, Shinjuku, Ueno, etc…what do you want to do or buy? There’s a section of Tokyo that’s best for whatever you’re looking for.
    25. Never boring – I have been living in Japan for twenty-five years now…and I still enjoy going out and about.

70th Anniversary of the bombing of Nagasaki

9 Aug

Today is the 70th anniversary of the 1945 August 9th atomic bombing of Nagasaki, Japan.

The 「平和祈念像」 (Peace Statue) in the 「平和公園」 (Peace Park) in Nagasaki.

The 「平和祈念像」 (Peace Statue) in the 「平和公園」 (Peace Park) in Nagasaki.

I first came to Japan in 1990, the year of the 45th anniversary of the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

Just as there is every year, there will be a memorial service in Nagasaki today to mark this solemn occasion…and a moment of silence across Japan at 11:02AM, the time that the bomb was dropped on the city seventy years ago.


29 Jun

We went to Odaiba, Tokyo today.

The train to Odaiba is fun because it’s driverless and it goes over “Rainbow Bridge”, but we went there by car today.

It had been awhile since our last visit to Odaiba. Kinda surprising how many more foreign tourists were there this time! I guess Tokyo tourist guidebooks feature Odaiba more prominently now.

Anyways, here are photo I took:

We ate たこ焼き (grilled octopus) for lunch.

We ate たこ焼き (grilled octopus) for lunch.


The “lifesize” Gundam robot.

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France gave Japan a 自由の女神 (Statue of Liberty) too.

France gave Japan a 自由の女神 (Statue of Liberty) too.

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Sunset over Tokyo Bay, Rainbow Bridge and 自由の女神 (Statue of Liberty)

Sunset over Tokyo Bay, Rainbow Bridge and 自由の女神 (Statue of Liberty)

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I like 「台場一丁目商店街」 (Odaiba Retro Shopping Street), designed like post-WW2 Japan.

I like 「台場一丁目商店街」 (Odaiba Retro Shopping Street), designed like post-WW2 Japan.


The “Odaiba Takoyaki (Griled Octopus) Museum”

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In the evening, the lifesize Gundam robot is lit-up and moves a bit.

In the evening, the lifesize Gundam robot is lit-up and moves a bit.

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Star Wars Exhibit

15 Jun

From last April 29th until Sunday, June 28th, 2015, there is a Star Wars exhibit at Roppongi Hills in Tokyo.

Tickets cost ¥1800 for adult admission, if you buy them at the event…but only ¥1500 if you buy them at a 7-eleven convenience store.

Poster advertising the Star Wars exhibit in Tokyo.

Poster advertising the Star Wars exhibit in Tokyo.

My wife and I went to this exhibit yesterday.

Photography wasn’t permitted in most of the exhibition areas, so I couldn’t take pictures of most of the items…but they had Star Wars-inspired artwork by some really talented artists, as well as actual props and costumes used in the Star Wars movies!

In the gift shop, they had some memorabilia made exclusively for this Tokyo exhibit…some of which was Japan-inspired, such as Star Wars 手ぬぐい (Japanese towels).

A few of the items sold at the gift shop.

A few of the items sold at the gift shop.

The exhibit is on the 52nd floor of the Roppongi Hills building, so we could get a nice view of Tokyo.

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The famous “spider” statue outside Roppongi Hills.

Here are some of the photos we took:

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There was a lot more to see at this exhibit, so if you’re interested in Star Wars, you should go to this exhibit by June 28th!


25 Aug

Yesterday we went to Kanagawa. The prefecture to the south of Tokyo.

First we went to Kamakura. Kamakura has many temples and shrines…but is probably most famous for the 大仏 (Great Buddha) statue that is there. We didn’t visit the Great Buddha yesterday, but we’ve been to it many times before (Click here to see photo I took of the Great Buddha about six years ago.)

First we visited the 小町通り (Komachi Street).

Ghibli store

The “Iwata Coffee Shop”. It’s claim-to-fame is that John Lennon ate there when he visited Kamakura.

A toy store.

We ate breakfast at the well-known “Komeda Coffee” restaurant.

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We went to the famous 報国寺 (Hōkoku-ji Temple), also called 竹寺 (“Bamboo Temple”) because of it’s bamboo forest!

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After we left the “Bamboo Temple”, I saw this old Coke machine that sold the cola in glass bottles:

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Some turtles in a pond came out of the water looking for food hand-outs from the people. Including this スッポン (Chinese Soft-shelled Turtle):

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Kamakura has many local-brewed beers, including this 「大仏ビール」 (“Great Buddha Beer”) that I bought:

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After Kamakura, we went to Yokohama:

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「横浜中華街」 (Yokohama Chinatown)

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The Yokohama Chinatown 交番 (Police Box).

In Yokohama Chinatwon, we ate 担々麺 (spicy “Tan-tan-men” Ramen) for lunch.

A shopping mall had a dinosaur exhibit.


Yokohama skyline.

For dinner, we ate at an 居酒屋 (Japanese “izakaya” pub).