Hitottabi Navigator's Diary
Japanese culture from my daily life

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2009.07.30 Noh

I went to 光明寺(Komyo-ji) at Kamiyacho神谷町 in the morning.
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There was an event that a professional Noh能 player taught us how to sing a Noh song. Noh is one of the traditional performing arts in Japan, as you might know. It was a wonderful experience for me to listen directly to the voice of such a nice actor, and to sing following him, with a quiet atmosphere at the temple.

His voice was so energetic and aesthetic that it could change the air which completely fascinated us all.

It was also a chance to remind me of Japanese traditional way of learning, that is to say, "to emulate professor". The actor told us how important it was for leaning Noh play. Please don't regard it as just simply copying something, but seeing with a full of imagination to learn essential things and going deeper. In Japanese, the word 学ぶ(learn) derives from 真似ぶ(emulate). Traditionally, in Japan, children always learn various things by emulating elder people, which can make them develop their acute powers of observation as well as their professional skills.

If you are interested in Noh, please check here.

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  1. 2009/07/30(木) 06:49:26|
  2. Art
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2009.07.24 Coffee break at Asakusa

Here is the coffee shop Royal Coffee Shop (ローヤル珈琲店) at Asakusa浅草 in Tokyo東京.
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If you have a chance to visit Asakusa, how about having a break here to enjoy coffee with cozy atmosphere? I recommend to go to the shop early before noon, because there are a few people that you can be relaxed.
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Shop Information
Shop: Royal Coffee Shop (ローヤル珈琲店)
Address: 1-39-7, Asakusa, Taito-ku, TOKYO (東京都台東区浅草1-39-7) MAP
OPEN: 9:00~21:00
Menu: Black coffee 480yen, Hot sandwitch is also famous here.

テーマ:東京 - ジャンル:地域情報

  1. 2009/07/24(金) 19:31:58|
  2. Tokyo 東京
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2009.07.23 An old poem

I really like 平家物語 (Heike Monogatari: the story of Taira families). It'a kind of poem and was said to be written in Japan in the 13th century, whose idea was affected on by Buddhism.

The begining part of the story is so famous in Japan.
Every Japanese is sure to know.

It might be regarded as pessimistic, but it's not, I think.
It's a kind of soothing medicine to take calm, neither pessimistic nor optimistic.

Why don't you ask your Japanese friend to read aloud?
The sound is like a kind of poem and must be beautiful even if you don't understand Japanese.

~平家物語~

祇園精舎の鐘の声
諸行無常の響きあり

沙羅双樹の花の色
盛者必衰の理を表す

奢れる者も久しからず
只春の夜の夢の如し

猛き者も遂には滅びぬ
偏に風の前の塵に同じ

~Heike Monogatari: the story of Taira families~

As we hear the bell ringing at the temple Giion-shoujya,
it makes us aware that nothing would be continuing forever.

As we see the sala trees blooming there,
they tell us the theory that the power to be in full flourish would fall into decline.

The haughty will die at last
as if it were a moment of a midspring night's dream.

The prosperity will never last
as if it were a dust to be blown by a wind.
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  1. 2009/07/23(木) 23:16:30|
  2. Art
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2009.07.08 Pork dish at Akihabara

At Japanese-style daily restaurants, you can usually see Teishoku(定食)at lunch menu.
Teishoku (定食) is a style of lunch and it usually consists of a main dish, a side dish, rice and miso soup.
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This is the menu called Hirekatsu Teishoku (ひれかつ定食) at the restaurant near Akihabara (秋葉原)station. The main dish is Japanese-style deep-fried pork medallion cutlets so called Hirekatsu (ひれかつ), with shredded cabbage, pickles, rice and miso soup.
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Generally we put the meat with brown sause.
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Breaded pork cutlet had come to Japan from Europe and adapted to suit Japanese tastes, so called Tonkatsu (とんかつ).
I recommend Hirekatsu(ひれかつ), a kind of Tonkatsu(とんかつ), especially for ladys and gentlemen who care about their weight and health, because it is tender and carry less fat than other types of pork.

Shop information: Tonkatsu Marugo(とんかつ 丸五)
Address: 東京都千代田区外神田1-8-14 MAP
TEL: 03-3255-6595
Open: 11:30~15:00, 17:00~20:00 except for the 3rd Tuesday each month
Menu: Hirekatsu Teishyoku (ひれかつ定食)¥2000


  1. 2009/07/08(水) 00:34:49|
  2. Tokyo 東京
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2009.07.01 Oinari-san

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a Japanese food, Oinari-sanお稲荷さん or Inarizushi稲荷ずし
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  1. 2009/07/01(水) 00:38:42|
  2. life
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