Ema boards.

Ema boards, or wishing plaques, are a mainstay of Shintoism, but it can also be seen in use in some Buddhist temples. They have a rather interesting origin, allow me to impart. History. The word ema is comprised of two kanji: 絵馬. The first 絵 for picture, and 馬 for horse. Horses are revered as [...]

Things I love about Okinawa.

It's no secret I live on Okinawa, Japan's sub-tropical southernmost prefecture, but I don't think I've ever extolled the wonders this entails. Allow me to fix that. Right now. In no particular order: All of the beaches. Let's start with a cliche shall we? Beaches. Okinawa has a fuck ton of them. If you're more [...]

Korean wedding ducks.

One thing I really love about travelling is the little cultural titbits you can learn along the way. On a recent visit to Seoul I saw and bought an adorable pair of wooden ducks. They aren't just for decor though, as you're about to discover. A bird in the hand. Apparently, the price of love [...]

Ni Ni Ni!

Before you think I've lost my marbles, this is actually significant. Know why? Well today is February 22nd in Japan, and that can only mean one thing: It's cat day! My own kitty, Nibbles. Why ni ni ni? Good question. February 22nd reads as 02/22, and the Japanese word for two is "ni" (pronounced nee). [...]

That time I stayed in a Buddhist Temple.

I mentioned in passing that during my time in Osaka, I stayed in a Buddhist Temple, and vowed to share that experience with you. My apologies for leaving it so long, but you know, life. No time like the present, so here it is. Rows of Buddhist statues. Back in July of 2016, husband and [...]

Hanami festivals on Okinawa 2017.

Hanami. A tradition of flower viewing held long and dear by the Japanese people. In this case, for cherry blossom trees. Cherry blossoms (or sakura, to use their Japanese name), are a beautiful pink flower that bloom in Spring for several weeks, before departing for an entire year, leaving lush foliage in their place. A [...]

Travel musings: 15th January 2017.

Another entry from my trusty travel diary. It's short but sweet. Nagoya caught me off guard. I knew it was going to be cold (and on that front it didn't disappoint), but snow?! Fuck. I have a lot of warm weather gear but I don't think I'm ever really prepared for snow. I despise the [...]