Tokyo International Literary Festival

Oh how I`d like to

attend this festival of

books … maybe next year?

So this is Japan`s first international literature festival, quite surprising for Japan really.   To not have had one before.  I`m sure they have lots of national ones though right?   Anyway, it`s on from the 1st of March to the 3rd of March at various locations around Tokyo so if you`re around and you`re a bit of bookworm go along.   I would if I was there so I hope they make it an annual event.  Look up more details at the Time Out Japan webpage.

One novelist,  Ishii Shinji, is performing a live-write of a piece of literature so he`s going to write a novel or short story on the spot at one of the locations, the location being a fully hired out tram car.   I`d love to see a writer live-write.   I`ve read one of this guy`s short stories 肉屋オウム and it`s pretty quirky.  It seems he does this thing a lot.  Looks like he likes a challenge!!

Speaking of literature, I looked up and watched that film Red Sorghum based on the novel by Mo Yan.  It was just ok.  I can understand that there was so much detail in the novel and the book went back and forth time-wise so it would have been difficult to fit everything into the film but, all the same, I think it could have been better.


Merry Christmas and a happy new year fellow bloggers


Hope it`s kind to you and me

merry xmas all!!

A decently priced ticket to Japan for next year would be nice so I am still scouring the various cheap flight websites to see if I can pluck one out.

Taking a break for the holiday season from the study but hope to get back to it as soon as.

Thanks to anyone who has followed me or liked my posts so far – your blogs have been cool too – more of this in 2013!!

Here`s a bonsai plant being decorated for christmas courtesy of another blog (blog.xamjapan – hope you don`t mind – let me know if you do) which I found on google images.

xmas in japan


Wine – rice or grapes?

Wine, nouveau or not,

is gaining ground in Japan,

the grape sort I mean..

… as we all know rice wine – sake – is already one of the great things associated with Japan.   Not that I`m an expert but I did like the sake  I tasted once or twice while in Japan…. More about sake in a bit.

The wine we are more familiar with though, outside of Japan, is gaining a more serious reputation there, as reported in an article I read just today.   A recent wine festival in Yamanashi (the Yamanashi Nouveau Wine Festival) pulled in a lot of revellers and it`s really beginning to be taken seriously as an industry in Japan now, even though varieties of Bordeaux wine have been grown since the 80s.    It`s really only taking off now. Happily, to me anyway, Hokkaido is being touted as one of the most exciting place to cultivate wine.  Anything `exciting` I hear about Hokkaido is always cool.  Yet another reason to head back there.

Of course Sake, the traditional rice wine of Japan will always be around and various festivals and events around that also go on all the time.   An interesting blog I linked to through this article – Tokyo through the drinking glass – explores the sake culture in Japan.   Very good blog.  I only had sake once or twice while in Japan the first time so I wouldn`t know a good sake from a bad one.  This blog would probably help me so I`ll check it out in more detail later on (and get more sake drinking in the next time – first up a sake cocktail!!).  Anyone who wants a good insight into sake should check this out : )

Wine is something I would only occasionally drink anyway.   I prefer red to white (the latter gives me a real headache-y hangover) but it depends on what I`m eating or where I am.   I`d rarely drink wine in a pub but of course I would in a restaurant.    After this JLPT exam  next month who knows I might need some alcohol but I wouldn`t mind drinking sake just for the day that`s in it so I might seek out the nearest Japanese restaurant and avail of their lovely rice wine!!