Tag Archives: 電車

Bike ride…

13 Aug

Yesterday we went on a bike ride to a park not too far from our house.

At the park, my kids caught (frogs) and (cicadas).

They’re girls and they’re teenagers…but they’ll still go out with their parents. And they still wanna catch bugs.
I’m glad! As their father, they’ll never grow up…in my mind!

Here’s a video of my second daughter holding a couple of (cicadas) she caught. At the end, she asks me 「もういい?」 (“Enough?”):

There’s a Japanese style garden at the park.

(A wooden lantern) (Looking thru a stone lantern)

Here’s a couple of shots of the river near the park:

And here are a couple of videos that I took of trains going over the bridge:

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One the way home from the park we stopped at 「ザ・ダイソー」 (“The Daiso“) for a couple things.

Do you know “The Daiso” (usually just called “Daiso”, or 百均 (Hyakkin (which is an abbreviation for 百円均一 (Hyakuenkinitsu), or 百円ショップ (¥100 Shop))?

There are other ¥100 shops…and even a ¥99 shop. But Daiso is almost synonymous with ¥100 shop.

Daiso is basically the Japanese version of the American One Dollar Store. (¥100 is almost equal to US$1)…but Daiso sells better merchandise. Better quality and more useful.

So, I guess I shouldn’t be surprised to learn that they’ve expanded overseas.

There are now Japanese Daiso stores in Korea, Singapore, United Arab Emirates, and the west coast of Canada and America (among other countries)!

Here’s the Daiso website.

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It’s obvious by their manners…but now it’s official:
Japanese travelers are the best tourists.

雷!

28 Jul

Yesterday I took my two youngest daughters to a shopping mall that’s a short train ride from our home because they wanted to buy some things that they “really needed“.

I agreed to take them…but only for a short time because it looked like it would rain. And when we left the mall, that’s what it did. Really hard!

First there was thunder and lightning, then the rain came pouring down. But it was a summer shower…so it ended soon after it started.

Actually, we got lucky. It started raining soon after we boarded our train home, and stopped just before we got off the train. So we didn’t have to walk in the rain at all. Perfect timing!

Anyways, there are many summer festivals and fireworks shows in Japan this time of year. And many people wear 浴衣 (Japanese summer kimono) and 甚平 (Japanese traditional summer outfit) to these events.

At the mall, we saw a couple of girls who were probably going to a festival or fireworks show after the mall (it might have gotten rained out, though). I saw them browsing in a CD store.

It seemed like it’d make a good photo. So here’s the photo I took of them:

Here are some videos I took of the train ride while looking out the conductor’s window (a couple of them are from the ride home, so it’s raining hard):

盆栽村

3 May

Yesterday was my youngest daughter’s birthday.

She’s twelve now. So now my kids are 12, 13 and 14.

She’s the “baby” of the family…and she’s already almost a teenager! They’re growing up too fast!

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I read about a place in 埼玉県 (Saitama Prefecture) out in the countryside north of Tokyo called 盆栽村 (Bonsai Village) that has many Bonsai gardens.

(Bonsai is the art of clipping and shaping plants (usually small trees)).

I never had an opportunity to go there and I didn’t want to make a special trip all the up there just to look at Bonsai. But today I had to go up in that general area for a few hours…so I decided to check out Bonsai Village on my way home.

There were many beautiful gardens with very nice bonsai…but taking photos was forbidden. I was disappointed about that.

They had some bonsai for sale. The prices were between ¥5000 and ¥50,000 (about U.S. $40 -$400)!

I was able to take this photo of a bonsai tree in someone’s front yard in a house near one of the gardens.

This place really was out in the boonies (American slang. “Boondocks, Sticks, Countryside, Rural”).

There was nothing there. Not at all like urban Tokyo.

I saw a convenience store and it had a parking lot. In Tokyo, like many big cities (NYC, etc), most places don’t have parking lots…if you drive somewhere, you have to find a place to park (hopefully) nearby and walk. Most people in Tokyo use the punctual, clean, safe and affordable public transportation (trains in Tokyo arrive every 3 minutes or so).

Here’s a picture of the train tracks in this countryside town. There’s nothing but trees and farmland for miles.

Here’s a couple of trains coming down that track:

Here’s a couple more videos of trains arriving at the 大宮公園駅 (Oomiya-kouen Station). (One going away from Tokyo, the other going towards):