Tag Archives: 2013

2013 Year in Review

Happy New Years! Once again we have made it through another year. Thanks for sticking with MoreThingsJapanese. This past year a lot has changed for me and I’m sure some of it has been reflected on the blog. First off, I ended my time teaching English with the JET Programme (they have a five-year limit) in July. I began working for the Okinawa OTEC Demonstration Facility in August. I first wrote about OTEC without much in the way of knowledge

Revenge of the Akuma Clan Launch

It’s November 26 and that means that my second book officially launches in the United States and will soon launch in other countries around the world. Writing a novel is a work of years and so it’s exciting to finally be able to share something with you that started back in 2010. While Revenge of the Akuma Clan is a fantasy set in Japan for the teen market, it contains many of the experiences I’ve shared right here on More

2013 Kume Island Shrimp Festival

Just two days ago, on November 23, Kume Island held its annual Kuruma Shrimp Festival. The festival is small, but popular with visitors coming from outside of Okinawa for a unique chance to see and taste the prized shrimp (they’re actually prawns but you get the idea). The festival started off with the usual welcoming speeches by the town tourism office, mayor, and shrimp industry representatives. Workers from the four local farms and the Okinawa shrimp cooperative sent the season’s

Senso Temple in Tokyo

After visiting Tokyo Skytree during my two-day trip to Tokyo I worked my way down to the new train station to work my way back into town. Many people had suggested the Asakusa area so I got off at the Asakusa station, just a few stops from the tower. I didn’t have any specific plans or maps but I quickly found my way to a highly populated area before the Senso Temple grounds. Between the Kaminari (lightning) Gate and the Hozo

2013 Kanegusuku Festival and Shishimai

Every few years at the largest full moon of the year there is a small festival in the Kanegusuku area of Kume Island.  As with many events in Okinawa, the date of the event is based on the kyureki (lunar) calendar.  While this means that the event is on a different day each year, the lunar timing means that the event always takes place at a full moon.  In this case, August 15th of the kyureki calendar. This particular festival

2013 Gima Obon Festival

Obon in Japan takes place at different times throughout the year.  In Okinawa it took place over three days from August 29-21. On the second night, communities throughout Kume Island celebrate together. Since all of the small festivals take place at the same time, it’s hard to see all of them.  This year I visited the largest festival since I was talked into buying raffle tickets in advance (they help pay for the fireworks and event materials).  This year the

2013 Kume Island Ha-ri-

The Ha-ri- races are a yearly event on Kume Island. This year they took place on June 12 at three locations around the island.  This year I stuck to the Maja area where locals and students gathered together for a day of races and fun in the water. While the races are the primary attraction, there is also generally a ball-toss game for the nursery school children and a tug-of-war.  There are numerous races from both locals and school participants.

2013 Kume Island Festival Day 2

August 18 schedule Time Event 16:30-18:00 Okinawan Sumo Competition 17:45-18:15 Charachter Show – Masked Wizards 18:20-18:40 Award Ceremony 18:45-19:05 Tunnaha Eisa 19:10-19:30 Student Performance 19:35-19:50 Kumejima’s Tourism ‘Lady’ Introduction 19:55-20:25 Raffle Drawing 20:30-21:30 Special Live Concert – Dynamites 21:30~ Fireworks Countdown The second day of the 2013 Kume Island Festival was a much different affair than the first day.  Where day one was focused on the giant tug of war, the second day was full of performances and fun for

2013 Kume Island Festival Day 1

Every year, Kume Island hosts a two-day festival in August, usually right before the Okinawan obon holidays.  This year, the festival took place on August 18th and 19th.  While many of the events, booths, and entertainments were similar to last year, this year marked the return of the giant tug-o-war.  For a bit of the history, skip down to the More on Kume Festival section. 2013 Schedule August 16 Time Event 16:00-17:15 Young Live – High School performance 17:45 Opening

The End of JET- Five Years in Japan

First off, thank you for reading and being a part of More Things Japanese. I started this blog back in 2010 to put some of my experiences into writing. It’s move around a bit and I’ve changed my posting schedule a few times to keep up with shifting work related activities, so I appreciate you sticking with me.  It’s been a lot of work, but a lot of fun sharing my experiences. For the past 5 years I’ve been living

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