This article provides a different perspective on the splendid beauty of the Nikko area and a different way to see the sights of Nikko. (Archived article – Originally published by Japan Today.)
Thanks to the pandemic, public consumption of alcohol is currently banned in large parts of Japan. What better time to tour a sake brewery? Watanabe Sahei Shoten is a fun and easy to access sake brewery in Tochigi's Nikko area. It was founded in 1842 by an ancestor of Watanabe Yasuhiro, the current proprietor, who … Continue reading The Happy Energy of Sake Brewing: Watanabe Sahei Shoten
In 1590 Japan was in turmoil. There had been civil wars raging intermittently for over a century as various warlords vied to take control and unify the country. Finally it had come down to three men: Oda Nobunaga, Toyotomi Hideyoshi and Tokugawa Ieyasu. After Nobunaga's death in 1582, Hideyoshi was best positioned to prevail and … Continue reading Odawara Castle: guarding the southwest approach to old Edo
In July I moderated a panel discussion at the Foreign Correspondents' Club on Japanese traditional crafts and their struggle to survive and be relevant in our modern world. My summary of that session is in the September issue of Number 1 Shimbun.
A few years ago some friends from the U.S. visited around this time of year. They had a wonderful time in Japan, but observed that they managed to visit Japan during the only time of year when nothing is blooming. Of course, it's the end of summer and most flowers have probably withered away in … Continue reading Mukojima Hyakkaen Garden, a place to find every bloomin’ thing