Archive | Tokyo RSS feed for this section

Universal Childrens Day

20 Nov

There is a Japanese holiday on May 5th called 「こどもの日」 (“Children’s Day”), but today (November 20th) is “Universal Children’s Day“.

Google's logo for "Universal Children's Day"

Google’s logo for “Universal Children’s Day”

The Japanese 「こどもの日」 (“Children’s Day”) holiday is a day for parents and grandparents to celebrate their children and hope for their future health and well-being.
Universal Children’s Day is different. As Wikipedia explains:

“…Universal Children’s Day is not simply a day to celebrate children for who they are, but to bring awareness to children around the globe that have succumbed to violence in forms of abuse, exploitation and discrimination…”

Japan does have an event for children around this time every November. For girls aged three and seven, and for boys aged five, Japanese celebrate 「七五三」 (“Shichi-Go-San”) (Click here to read my short explanation of it.)

Every November, you can see young kids in Japan dressed in kimono for 「七五三」 ("Shichi-Go-San").

Every November, you can see young kids in Japan dressed in kimono for 「七五三」 (“Shichi-Go-San”).

Tokyo supports Paris

15 Nov

The Tokyo Tower (which was modeled after France’s Eiffel Tower) is illuminated the colors of the French flag to show solidarity with France in the aftermath of the tragic terrorist attacks in Paris.


So is Tokyo Sky Tree:

And 東京都庁 (Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building):

(Photos from @naokiss )

Kawagoe Festival

19 Oct 2015-10-18 19.03.35

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):

Could you find the proper restroom?

16 Oct

In Japan, nearly every public restroom has a blue picture of a man on the men’s room door and a red picture of a woman on the ladies’ room door.

But that’s not always the case. Sometimes, especially at places that don’t get many foreign customers, the doors with be marked with black kanji symbols for male and female on the respective doors.

Would you be able to find the correct restroom? Take this two-question quiz to see.

For this quiz, this symbol will be “no. 1”.


For this quiz, this symbol will be “no. 2”.

How did you do? Did you know the answers, of just guess them? Tell me in the comments section!

My Number

5 Oct

Beginning today, the Japanese Government will begin issuing every resident in Japan a twelve-digit Social Security Number.

In Japan, it won’t be called “Social Security Number” in English. It’s called 「個人番号」 (こじんばんごう), which means “personal number”. It has a more commonly used nickname in English, though…「マイナンバー」 (“My Number”).

It says "Beginning October 2015, each and every person will have a 'My Number' delivered"

It says “Beginning October 2015, each and every person will have a ‘My Number’ delivered”

America has long had a Social Security Number system. American Social Security Numbers are nine-digits long and arranged in a three-digit, two-digit, four digit pattern (xxx-xx-xxxx).

This is a new system in Japan. The new Japanese “My Number” system will be twelve-digits long and arranged in 3 four-digit number pattern (xxxx-xxxx-xxxx).

Just as in America, everyone who lives in Japan will be issued a Social Security Card…but, unlike the American ones which simply have a person’s name, signature and the SSN, the Japanese ones will have a photo of the person, their name, address, gender and date-of-birth on the front, and the “My Number” on the back side. They will also be embedded with an IC chip.

An example of the new Japanese "My Number" cards. (Front (left): photo, name, address, gender, DOB;  Back (right): 12-digit SSN)

An example of the new Japanese “My Number” cards. (Front (left): photo, name, address, gender, DOB; Back (right): 12-digit SSN)

Do you live in Japan? have you gotten you number yet?
Does your country have a Social Security Number system?


Review 22: Tokyo Secrets

3 Oct

I was recently given two e-books to review from the author.

They are: “Tokyo Disneyland and Disney Sea Secrets” and “7 Secrets to the Perfect Tokyo Cherry Blossom Festival Vacation“.

"Tokyo Disneyland and Disney Sea Secrets"

“Tokyo Disneyland and Disney Sea Secrets”

"7 Secrets to the Perfect Tokyo Cherry Blossom Festival Vacation"

“7 Secrets to the Perfect Tokyo Cherry Blossom Festival Vacation”

The author has lived in Tokyo and still continues to visit often.  Both books are full of helpful tips and useful advice to see the 桜 (Cherry Blossoms) in Japan…which are beautiful but have a short life. If you’re planning a trip here to see them, it could be difficult to decide on which dates to come.
The book “7 Secrets to the Perfect Tokyo Cherry Blossom Festival Vacation” helps with that and more.

The book “Tokyo Disneyland and Disney Sea Secrets” offers, as the title suggests, tips for visiting the Disney amusement parks near Tokyo.
Personally, I have never felt that it was particularly difficult to go to Tokyo Disneyland, but I suppose it could be stressful for first-time overseas visitors.
This e-book would be very helpful for them, I’m sure. One point where I would give contrary advice on is purchasing tickets…Japan has “discount ticket shops” all over the place. They sell all kinds of tickets…for movies, museums, concerts, sporting events, and amusement parks at discounted prices. I always buy tickets there.

Visit to purchase these books and for other helpful tips.

Pepsi Ghost

2 Oct

I’ve written posts before about the numerous unique flavors that Pepsi Japan has offered.
(Click here to see them.)

Starting on October 6th, for a limited time, Pepsi Japan will offer 「ペプシゴースト」 (“Pepsi Ghost“) for Halloween.

「ペプシゴースト」 (“Pepsi Ghost”)

They will be sold in a bottles with various original monsters on the labels. And, most interestingly, the bottles say that they’re 「ミステリーフレーバー」 (“Mystery flavor”)!

Would you (will you) try these once they go on sale?


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 290 other followers