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Showing posts from February, 2015

Rengakan Illumination 2014: Cultural Adventure

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Rengakan Illumination is an illumination event held at Rengakan or Brick Museum (煉瓦館) in Kumatori Town, Osaka Preferecture in Japan every first of December until the twenty fifth of December.
It is known for the different presentations by different schools in the area. These presentations include performing bands, choirs, and individual presentations. There are also arts and illumination exhibits and also some interactive activities.
Any special event would not be complete without food... And that is always present during the Rengakan Illumination. Rengakan has some unique food stores which I fondly call as the "vehicle restaurants". These food stalls are actually vehicles with makeshift kitchens at their back. You could buy there food like tokoyaki, barbecue and many more. If you don't like this quick meals then you could order food from the "regular" food stores in Rengakan. It's a bit pricier than the food sold at the "vehicle restaurants" though…

Food Trip: Okonomiyaki (Osaka-style)

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A food trip in Japan is not complete without trying the okonomiyaki (お好み焼きo-konomi-yaki). It is a Japanese pancake made from a variety of ingredients. It is also prepared differently on different places.
The name okonomiyaki came from the words okonomi which means "what you want" or "what you like" and yaki which means "grilled" of "cooked".
the food is mostly associated with the Kansai orHiroshima areas of Japan but you could still buy anywhere in the country. Since we stayed in the Kansai area, particularly Osaka, we got the chance to try out the Kansai- or Osaka- style okonomiyaki. This is also where the dish originated.
So what is the Kansai-/Osaka-style okonomiyaki?

The Kansai- or Osaka-style okonomiyaki is the predominant version of the dish which is served throughout most of Japan. Its batter is made of flour, grated nagaimo, water,eggs, and shredded cabbage. It usually contains other ingredients like meat, green onion, squids, octopus, shrim…

Japan Diaries: Day 2

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Day 2 December 20, 2014:
It's raining hard today and I'm losing hope that we would go anywhere with this weather. I was hoping that it would only be snow flakes that's falling from the skies and not rain drops and mushy ice.

Lucky for me,  Mr. Toshi drove me around Eiraku Dam. There is a walking course around this place and this is where he usually take long walks with his wife. However, since it was still raining, I was not able to go out of the car. I will just memorize the way going to the dam and revisit it when the weather is more pleasurable. 
Mr. Toshi and I talked about golf on our way back home. He wanted us to try his favorite sport /recreational activity so we dropped by at his residence to get his golf clubs and also invite my wife to come along and try it out too.
After getting the golf bags, we headed to New Airport Green Club to practice our skills in hitting a golf ball. Mr. Toshi also taught us the correct posture and other basic details on how to play the spo…

Japan Diaries: Day 0 and 1

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This is the beginning of our 26-day adventure in Japan. Join me and my family as we recount the daily accounts of our trips and adventures in this beautiful country called The Land of the Rising Sun.*
*NOTE: The details in this article (with minor editing in info) are copied from my travel diary. 

Day 0 (Dec. 18, 2014):
Today is the big day, after months of preparation, we are finally going to Japan. Our excitement is building as we left NAIA Terminal 3 on a 4-hour flight to Kansai International Airport (KIX).

Finally! We landed safely! After passing through the immigration, we were picked up by our godfather and we immediately drove to his residence in Tsubasugaoka, Senna-gun, Osaka Prefecture.
Before we called it a day, our Japanese family gave us a little "welcoming celebration". For me this symbolizes the beginning of our adventure in Japan.

Day 1 (Dec.19, 2014):
It's officially our first day in Japan. I'm still so overwhelmed and excited by the fact that we are on ano…