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My Japanese daily life #3

by - 6:12 AM

September ended as fast, if not faster, than August. It is hard to believe that we are already in October, just the day before my birthday (this is subtly placed isn't it?).Well what to say about September...
It was a month full of preparation for everything I undertake and complete from this month  On my days off  I 've been thinking, designing, doing research on the web and so on... for some projects that will get online progressively throughout the fall and next winter. So I didn't do much but still have a few things to tell.

Kurogi-machi, Yame, Fukuoka

Kurogi-machi, Yame, Fukuoka

Kurogi-machi, Yame, Fukuoka

Kurogi-machi, Yame, Fukuoka

Kurogi-machi, Yame, Fukuoka
This man brought green tea to Japan !
Kurogi-machi, Yame, Fukuoka

Kurogi-machi, Yame, Fukuoka

In mid-September, I went to a shooting with my colleagues in the city of Yame (八女) in the south of the Fukuoka prefecture. We went to the disctrict of Kurogi-machi (黒木町).
I had fever for few days before so I was a bit off and did standing dozed most of the day. Luckily I had nothing to do but lok around, take pictures and make some relations  with people of the prefecture and the town of Yame. Isn't it the best work ever ?
Kurogi-machi is a nice little place with many old buildings and beautiful old houses. The city is famous for its wisteria and green tea is one of the best in Japan, it even must be in the top 3. It is said that it is in Yame that green tea has been produced for the first time in Japan.
The Japanese hospitality being what it is, especially in the countryside , everywhere we went, we were served this precious beverage. Unfortunately, I have to confess that I hate tea in all its forms and it was embarrassing to  explain that I can't or tea or even coffee (proposed in replacement of tea), but just water. In addition it is very difficult to understand for a Japanese citizen that one can hate tea as it is a so natural thing  to them. At noon, the owner of the restaurant we ate in served us tea with dessert and as I could not drink it, I asked for water. Instead they brought me a fresh shiso juice, so delicious  that I kindly received the recipe. Soon on the blog.

Kimono Hearts, Fukuoka


At the end of the month, I went once again to Kimono Hearts to adjust my outfit for Saturday. In fact, looking for accessories to hair, I watched again the pictures of my coordinate and I found it a bit bland. After a mail to the staff, I went there to put a little more color in my outfit by changing obi and accessories.
That day, for its 10th anniversary, the store had organized an event around traditional kimonos with a true craftsman and I could touch and observe real amazing quality of fabrics. Staff even twisted one around me to see what it would look : a beautiful black fabric with sparkling stars. With a silver obi and turquoise obi-age and obi-jime, it is the perfect outfit for Christmas or a little fancy evening party.
I enjoyed the experience and am friendly with the really lovely staff. Before leaving, I received ... a huge steak! Apparently, it is a gift made to all customers thanking us for coming . I can not wait to eat it with Daisuke.

Kashii Hama, Fukuoka

Kashii Hama, Fukuoka

Grippi, Island City, Fukuoka

Sakura d'automne, island City, Fukuoka
Autumn cherry blossoms
parc d'Island City, Fukuoka

Island City, Fukuoka

jardin chinois, Island City, Fukuoka
Chinese garden
Occasionally, I need some fresh air to breathe, see the sea and do a long walk. Especially in autumn as it is a season that I love for the pleasant temperature, the good weather and the so special sunlight, the days that get shorter and the wonderful dishes.
The other day I went for a walk in the east ward of the city in Kashii-hama (香椎浜) and on artificial island of Island City which also celebrates its 10 years. At Kashii-hama, the tide was low enough for the floating torii and the small shrine beside accessible by foot. Besides, priests were in the process of conducting a ceremony, in front of dozens of onlookers, most armed with binoculars.
I continued my walk through Island City with its huge park and ran into a corner that I had not yet visited: the International Garden. Among the six gardens (which symbolize the 6 sister cities Fukuoka), the Chinese garden is clearly the one I loved the most with its waterfall and its round door. A nice place for a photo shoot.

Finally, I enrolled in JLPT (Japanese level test) N1, the highest level, that I didnt pass yet since I keep forgetting to register for like 2 years. I study regularly since the end of my classes in Aso so I have no doubt about obtaining it. It's been a bit pretentious but for once I have confidence in myself! The JLPT is a pure cramming test  and it doesn't eally reflect the real Japanese level of someone but I want to get it anyway.
I also register to the Fukuoka Kentei test (福岡検定), an examination on the history and culture of Fukuoka. Classified into 3 levels, I am going to try the lowest level. The examination takes place in early January and I slowly started to study, starting with the cards and the questions they offer on the officialwebsite. This learning is very exciting and I am sure it will serves me as much as for the examination to deepen my knowledge of Fukuoka which will be essential in the future ... :)

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