Bondance in the rain – Ame no naka no Bonodori – 雨の中の盆踊り

Bondance (bon odori) is a style of dancing performed especially during Obon welcoming spirits of ancestors. 盆踊りとは、お盆の時期に先祖の魂を迎え入れる意味で行われる踊りです。   It has been held in various places in Japan from the end of July till around the end of Obon. 7月下旬からお盆が終わるくらいまで、各地で開催されています。   I went to Ebisu Bondance but the day was rainy. 私は恵比寿の盆踊りに行ってきましたが、当日は雨。   It was rather […]

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Japanese summer – にほんのなつ - 日本の夏

Here in Japan, with more than 30 degrees today again with high humidity, it is very muggy. 今日も30度越えの日本は、湿度の高さも相まって、息苦しい暑さです。   I don’t really understand 80% or 90% humidity when the winter is very dry…. (bad for skin) 湿度が80%とか90%って、本当意味わかんない….冬は恐ろしく乾燥するというのに(お肌に悪い!)   I sweat easily so I hate Japanese (super-humid) summer. 私は汗っかきなので、日本の夏は大嫌いです。   Also this year we have not […]

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The Star Festival – Tanabata –たなばた – 七夕

Today is Tanabata. Kyo wa tanabata desu. 今日は七夕です。   We write our wishes on a narrow strip of paper (tanzaku) and hang them on the bamboo grass. Hosonagai kami (tanazaku) ni negaigoto wo kaki, sasanoha ni tsurushimasu. 細長い紙(短冊)に願い事を書き、笹の葉に吊るします。   It is very colourful and has occasionally some ornaments as it is like a summer Christmas […]

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Japanese food – にほんしょく – 日本食

Do you like Japanese food? Minasan, nihonshoku wa suki desu ka? みなさん日本食は好きですか?   What do you like most? Nani ga ichiban suki desu ka? 何が一番好きですか?   I like to try different countries’ food but I love Japanese food of course. Watashi wa iroiro na kuni no ryori wo taberunoga suki desu ga, nihonshoku wa yappari […]

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Izakaya – いざかや – 居酒屋

There is a culture of izakaya in Japan. Nihon niwa Izakaya toiu bunka ga arimasu. 日本には居酒屋という文化があります。   Izakaya is Japanese pub or Japanese bar restaurant. Izakaya towa, nihonfu pabu matawa ba-resutoran toitta tokoro desu. 居酒屋は、日本風パブまたはバーレストランといったところです。   People share different dishes rather than one dish for one person. Hitori hitosara dewanaku, minna de iroirona ryori wo […]

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Rainy season – tsuyu /baiu – 梅雨(plum rain)

Tokyo is now in the rainy season. Tokyo wa tsuyu(plum rain) ni hairi mashita. 東京は梅雨に入りました。   “Tsuyu” is the rainy season in early summer in Japan, usually from the beginning of June to the middle of July. “Tsuyu” towa, nihon ni okeru, natsu no hajime no uki no kotode, tsujo 6gatsu no hajime kara 7gatsu […]

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Oktoberfest in June – 6月のオクトーバーフェスト

I went to Oktoberfest in Hibiya, Tokyo. Hibiya no Oktoberfest ni itte kimashita. 日比谷のオクトーバーフェストに行ってきました。   Oktoberfest is a famous beer festival in Munich, Germany, Oktoberfest wa doitsu no myunhen de yumei na biru matsuri desu ga, オクトーバーフェストは、ドイツのミュンヘンで有名なビール祭りですが、   but here in Japan, it is held from spring to autumn every year. Koko nihon dewa, maitoshi […]

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Ko(u)ban – こうばん-交番

Ume’s Japanese Lesson 2 has a little talk about koban and how to ask places. Ume’s Japanese Lesson 2 dewa koban ni tsuite to basho no tazunekata wo ohanashi shiteimasu. うめの日本語レッスン2では、交番についてと、場所の尋ね方をお話しています。   There are a lot of koban (police box, not police station) in Japan. Nihon niwa koban ga takusan arimasu. 日本には、交番がたくさんあります。   When you […]

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To be a little polite – O and GO – “お” と “ご”

In Japanese, there are some polite expressions for elder people and for strangers. Nihongo niwa meue no kata ya mishiranu hito e no iikata to iunoga arimasu. 日本語には目上の方や、見知らぬ人への、丁寧な言い方というのがあります。   They are quite different from the ways you talk to your families and friends. Tomodachi ya kazoku to hanasu iikata to wa zuibun kotonari masu. 友達や家族と話すときに言い方とは、ずいぶん異なります。 […]

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Rice field – Tanbo – 田んぼ

Rice fields near my place have water and now they are planted with rice seedlings Kinjyo no tanbo ni mizu ga hairi, nae ga ueraremashita. 近所の田んぼに水が入り、苗が植えられました。   When I see rice fields with water and seedlings, I feel “Oh this is very Japan…”. Tanbo ni nae ga uerareta nowo miruto, “ah sugoi nihon dana “ […]

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