Saturday, December 31, 2005

New Year's Eve, decorate shimekazari

December 31, 2005

I guess most Japanese people have already finished preparing to celebrate the new year.


I decorated the gate of my house with shimekazari, decorated rope of rice straw, for the new year today. It's said in Japan that shimekazaris are decorated to ward off evil spirits. They are made of shimenawa, rope of rice straw, used to indicate the sacred places where Shinto gods appear. A shimekazari is a special shimenawa decorated with oranges, ferns, and etc.
We can easily imagine old Japanese people used to have strong relationship to rice.

Excuse me, but I'm not sure my explanation about shimekazari and shimenawa is correct, and my English likewise of course. :-p

Have a nice new year !

Friday, December 30, 2005

Mochi - Rice cake

December 30, 2005

In Japan, we prepare to celebrate the new year at this time of the year.
We pounded rice cake, mochi, today in order to decorate as a festive decoration and to eat on the new year's holidays of course.
The following picture is the one that my mother and my brother were pounding mochi. After that, I pounded one more mochi.

pounding mochi

I'd love to have freshly-pounded mochi with soy sauce and grated radish. :-) They taste delicious to me !
And most Japanese children like to have mochi with soybean flour, kinako, and sugar. They taste a little too sweet for me. Also, mochi with bean jam, anko, really taste sweet.

Thursday, December 29, 2005

Rainbow !

December 29, 2005

It's the first off day of my winter holidays. I saw the video, which is recorded the concert held in 1977, on DVD.

I was really impressed by their great playing. Really excellent !!!
They used to play in the motif of classical music - such as Chaikovski, Bach, and Beethoven.
And the period when the DVD was recorded is called "the triarchy period by Richie, Cozy, and Ronnie".

Richie Blackmore, who was exactly one of the greatest guitarist in hard rock scene just in my opinion, was playing the guitar in euphoria.
Cozy Powell, the deceased, who was called "The greatest drummer in history", was playing energetically and powerfully. Especially, his drum solo was really terrific ! It's the most wonderful drum solo I've ever seen. I actually don't want to believe his death. I'm really so sad to lose a great drummer like him.
Ronnie James Dio, who is still an active heavy rock musician as a vocalist of his band "DIO", was singing with all his heart and soul. His singing style is soulful like Japanese enka singers. Enka songs are traditional Japanese ballad songs. I've attended his band's concert in Japan this June.

Thanks for your great playing. I'll see the DVD one more time !

Wednesday, December 28, 2005


December 28, 2005

We are finished with all of our this year's work. I was really on edge today. Because the manufacturing line of our factory doesn't work well nowadays. I hoped it wouldn't have any serious problems on the last day. :-)
The wish came true. It did good job ! Thanks a lot ! We was able to finish the last day's work comfortably thanks to the good job of it.

We have 7 days off for our winter holidays ! I'm going to prepare to get the new year started and study English a lot, of course... Maybe ? :-p

I'd like to take my family to ski slopes several times the next year.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Considering business, health

December 27, 2005

I'm still pretty busy at work. My brother and I made a prediction of whether our amount of production is enough or not. We have just guessed that our customer's orders would be ahead of our supply. We may have to work more hard... But we discussed our lives... We have been working so hard recently. It means breaking down our health to work more hard. We need to take a rest. So we have just decided not to push ourselves. I suppose most Japanese workers work too hard. For us, health is much more important than money.

Monday, December 26, 2005


December 26, 2005

I'm feeling worse. My cold might get worse....
Just in case, I took some medicines for my cold. The medicines sometimes are called alcohol. :-)
In Japan, we say at times that sake is the chief of all medicine.
And I decided to go to bed earlier than usual. I'm not able to access the Internet any more.
Sorry... Good night.

Sunday, December 25, 2005

Bowling and Glasses

December 25, 2005

I went bowling with my family this morning. I suppose it's the best way to play inside - such as playing bowls, when it's cold like the recent weather in Japan.
I've heard that the bowling alleys in my city are the cheapest in Japan before.
I'm not exactly so good at bowling. The highest bowling store I've got before is around 180. My best score was 130 today....(ToT)
After that, we went to a cheap belt-conveyor sushi restaurant for lunch. I had 14 dishes. It sounds eating too much, doesn't it ? :-p
Then I visited to the glasses shop ,which one of my ex-classmates works for, in order to get my new glasses. The glasses are bifocals as I've posted on this blog before. I can look at everything well, especially nearby objects ! On the other hand, I realized my aging. I'm really so sad....

Saturday, December 24, 2005

Birthday, Christmas, and lessons

December 24, 2005

One of my uncles became 90 years old today. He lives alone because he don't have any children and his wife already died a long time ago. After her death, we suggest living with us to him. But he didn't. He wanted to stay single at his house and to do everything himself - such as doing the laundry, preparing the bath, and making meals. So he can still manage almost all things of housework, though he's 90 years old. That's amazing, right ? I suppose doing everything yourselves is the best way not to age.

And now, it's also Christmas Eve today. My eldest son believes Santa Claus is really coming tonight, though he is already 12 years old. :-)
When I was his age, I knew the fact that Santa Claus is an imaginary person. He's funny, isn't he ?

By the way, I challenged to take some higher level English lessons this morning. They were much more difficult than the ones I usually take. I still feel a comfortable headache. :-) After that I understood why I'm still a beginner of English. I know I have to practice it a lot more. But I don't have enough time to do that. But there's no hurry on improving my English skill. Of course I really want to improve it as soon as possible but I hate to work too hard at practicing it. I just want to study it slowly in my life since it's a kind of my hobby. I may be self-indulgent. :-p

Friday, December 23, 2005


December 23, 2005

I wrote new year greeting cards sent my friend, my relatives, and our customers today. No, no... I didn't write them. I made the original on my PC and only printed them. I've never written them recently. (^^;
My printer is really old one. There were some terrible problems when I was printing them today. It didn't work well first. So the result looked funny, especially color printing. I guess the cause is that it was cold for real even in doors. The printer didn't want to work as such a condition like me. :-p
By the way, I ran short of the cards to print after the trouble. I rushed into my uncle's shop in order to buy some postcards so that I print them as soon as possible since I wanted to finish printing them by the end of the day.

Thursday, December 22, 2005


December 22, 2005

I still have a cold. But I'm feeling better than I felt yesterday.
I had a terrible trouble in my factory. My brother and I tried to repair ourselves without calling the makers. Because we hate to spend the cost and the times.
The problem was resolved in two hours. We was able to cut down the cost, however we got greasy hands. I really want Japanese government employees to have such a experience. :-p They have to cut the cost down, right ?

Wednesday, December 21, 2005


December 21, 2005

I feel much better now. I bet I make a full recovery from my cold tomorrow after I thought of my experience. I will get better whenever I'm able to drink a lot even if I have a cold.
I had one a canned beer and about 300 cc of Japanese sake as my evening drink today. Even if it was the half of usual amount, they tasted great to me. I will be able to work so hard tomorrow !

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Fire !

December 20, 2005

I have a cold now as I have already posted. So I wasn't able to work so hard because of having a cold. I expected an employee, who works at our factory, to work harder than usual instead of me. But he didn't work as hard as I expected. I have just decided to cut his winter bonus and to fire him soon if he still doesn't follow my instruction from now on. :-(

By the way, I'm truly envious of Japanese government workers, especially members of the Diet, because they can get their bonuses even if they face a budget deficit, right ?

Monday, December 19, 2005

Catch a clod.

December 19, 2005

I think I caught a cold due to the recent cold weather. It's really cold when I work outside of our factory. Of course I put on warm clothes but they don't work well in such a condition.
I have a runny nose.... It will become icicles some time. ha-ha.

Anyway, I will continue to post my English diary even when I have a cold. However, my brain doesn't work well. I bet I will make lots of mistakes in my English. :-)

Sunday, December 18, 2005

New glasses

December 18, 2005

I have felt my eyesight is failing since a few months ago. So I decided to buy new glasses this morning.
Actually, one of my ex-classmates has a glasses shop at my hometown. I went to his shop in order to buy new ones.

He said, "You have old sight a little."
I was so shocked. I'm still 42 years old ! Old sight ? What does he mean ?
But in addition, he said, "Most of my ex-classmates come here to buy new glasses these days due to old sight."
They do ?? Not only me ?? I can't complain.... I was relieved a little after I heard that. However, I felt that I truly got old.
Anyway, I ordered bifocals which there are no boundaries.

By the way, I got a discount of 6000 yen thanks to him. :-)

old sight is presbyopia, right ?

Saturday, December 17, 2005

School plays

December 17, 2005

school playI went to my daughter's kindergarten today in order to see the school play she and her classmates acted. Should I say kindergarten play ?
My daughter challenged to act a mother who was doing the laundry. It looked very cute to me. But I wasn't able to see her act well because I had to take some videos of her act by my wife's order. In Japan, many fathers take videos or photos of their children on every events. But in my opinion, it's more important to keep looking at them than taking any pictures. They would stay in our memory forever, right ?

couldn't have crabs.

December 16, 2005
freshwater crabs
I expected to go on a trip to the north of Hyogo prefecture in order to have lots of crabs this weekend. But I wasn't able to go there due to the recent heavy snowfall there. The organizer of the trip sent me an e-mail about the abort the day before yesterday.
I was really so sad to hear that we couldn't have the huge amount of delicious crabs. However, I had a lot of freshwater crabs, which live in freshwater such as rivers and ponds, instead of having crabs. They are tasty but not as delicious as expected. I miss crabs....

Thursday, December 15, 2005


December 15, 2005

There was a phone call from a woman to our factory. The woman is the accountant's wife who we offer our accounting. He declares for our taxes every year in place of us. According to his wife, he lost his memory after he fell down at the poolside of the indoor swimming pool which is near their house. And she told me he didn't have any serious problems except the loss of memory. I was so relieved to hear that he could carry on his normal life.
Anyway, we are in trouble.... We have to find another accountant immediately.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Tire chains

December 14, 2005

I've decided to buy tire chains in order to go to a snowy district this weekend.
The area is close to Kinosaki hot spring in Hyogo prefecture along the Sea of Japan. It will be really cold, I guess.
I'm going to have a lot of crabs there this weekend with my family, my ex-coworkers, and their family. I sometimes have events like this with my ex-coworkers after I quit my previous job.
We usually go there at this time of every year. We've never used tire chains before when visiting there. But according to today's forecast, it's colder than average year in Japan. So I'm buying them just in case. I hope I won't have any opportunities to use them at that time. I'm not used to driving on snowy roads.

By the way, I'll post the dairy written about this trip later with some delicious-looking pictures. :-)

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Google is a spelling error.

December 13, 2005

I tryed to upload my English diary on this space( and check the spelling by the spelling checker offered by the But the verb "google", means searching information on the Google site, is notified as a spelling error by it. Why is that ? The are managed by the Google, right ? I know the verb "google" is a new word. But they should add the word as a correct English word into their dictionary in my opinion. :-)

What do you think about it ?

Monday, December 12, 2005

13th Wedding Anniversary

December 12, 2005

Today, December 12th, is our 13th wedding anniversary ! We didn't do any special things tonight. But I came home with some short cakes. Today's dinner was yosenabe - I think it called "Japanese chowder" in English.

I remember that day... The reception started at 12 o'clock sharp on December(12) 12th, 1993. And the flight number of the airplane which we boarded for our honeymoon to Australia was 777. Yes ! 12-12-12 and 7-7-7 !!! ha-ha. Of course, the occasions happened by chance. :-)
Now, we have 3 kids. I hope to spend time with my family peacefully as long as possible.

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Having relationship

December 11, 2005

My children and I went to my neighboring junior high school, which my eldest son is going to attend next year, to see an event. The purpose of the event is having a relationship in the district we live. So many organizations opened some free shops and cheap shops to sell something to eat or drink. There also are some shops to teach interesting culture. For example, magic, how to play the game of go(Japanese traditional game) and how to train for being firemen.

my wifehaveing a relationship my son and daughter
My wife helped the event as a volunteer staff. So I had to take all my children to the event. I was really exhausted after the event. Because I've been very busy on both business and private since 2 weeks ago. I expect much not to be busy like last week. I will not be probably so busy at work. :-p

Saturday, December 10, 2005

Pounding mochi event

December 10, 2005

There was an interesting event at the kindergarten my daughter attend. That was the pounding mochi(rice cake) event. There were no enough members who help (to) make mochi, especially no enough powerful men. So I had to join the event. Yeah ! I'm a factory worker, you know. I have the enough power to pound mochi well. :-)
By the way, I invited my Australian friend to the event. At first, he seemed not to want to pound mochi. But some pretty kindergarten students asked him to try it. After that, he decided to do it. I think most of the children had a good time thanks to his help.

Actually.... I got tired a lot today. I'm tired at my work nowadays. And I tried to speak English during the day. At the kindergarten and some English lessons. But they are truly good exercises for my tough brain. I want to try to speak English even if I'm tired. :-)

Friday, December 09, 2005

Have to change

December 9, 2005

I went to an English school today, which I always attend on every Saturday morning, in order to change my brain into the English mode. :-)
I'll have an Australian guest tomorrow. So I have to do it.
I joined some lessons which we can talk each other freely about any topics. There were several students in the room. One of them, who looks much older than me, is very good at speaking English. Of course he's Japanese but he seems like a native English speaker for the other students and me. He is truly a high level student ! I was so surprise at his talking. I couldn't catch some words of what he said in English. I was confused a little. But it sounded informative and exciting for me. I got the urge to be an English speaker like him.

Thursday, December 08, 2005


December 8, 2005

There are many posts about the recent occasions of my job these days. Is that boring ? :-)
A machine in my factory has broken today. I bet we have used the manufacturing line too much. It's "overload", right ?
I get up earlier than usual in order to repair it tomorrow morning. (ToT)
But I'm going to have some amusing events this weekend. I'll post about them on the day.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

A new employee

December 7, 2005

I really want to hire a new employee because the current employees don't work well. So my brother and I often feel stressed so much at our factory. If nothing is done, either will get injured seriously. I cannot have torn my fingernail off if we have a excellent employee. :-p

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

My nail off

December 6, 2005

I'm still extremely busy nowadays. I don't have enough time to access the Internet.
I won't work overtime for so long tomorrow so that I have my spare time many more.
By the way, I wrote my diary yesterday that I have to be careful myself not to get injured at the factory. But I wasn't able to do that. I was annoyed so much yesterday. So I torn my fingernail off a little !
Ouch ! (ToT)
However, it looks like a scratch for me. :-) There are so many wounds on my hands. I'm going to work so hard tomorrow, too !

Monday, December 05, 2005

Calls from salesmen

December 5, 2005

I hate any calls from salesmen. How about you ? I had a lot of calls from them today. I'm so busy these days at our factory. There is nothing more annoying than such calls when I'm busy at work. However I'm annoying, I have to be careful myself not to get injured at the factory.

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Labor's hands

December 4, 2005
my hand
I have to hard so hard in winter and the winter air is so dry. So my hands have a lot of oil spots and rough skins but I can never take them out however I wash my hands many times. I can't complain about that because I'm a factory worker smeared with oil slick.

That's called "labor's hands", right ? :-)

Saturday, December 03, 2005

Marriage license

December 3, 2005

One of my friends on the Internet who lives in Cebu Philippine is going to get married to a Filipina. They have to get a marriage license according to his blog.

What's a marriage license ? I've never heard that before. There are no such licenses in Japan. So I've just googled what it means. The origin is a law of the States, right ? That seems interesting for us. In Japan, there is a family registration of each family, which is called "Koseki" in Japanese. All we need to do is to enter in our family registration when we get married instead of getting a marriage license.

Friday, December 02, 2005


December 2, 2005

We shipped a large amount of our products today. The amount is 10 tons ! We usually manufacture 4 tons of products(recycled chemical fiber) a day. We guess we can't respond to the expectations of the orders from our customer if nothing is done.
We fortunately have tons of materials to manufacture these days. So we can increase the production easily if we hire new employees. But the personnel cost is really high in Japan, you know. I wonder what I can do instead of hiring.

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Come on spam !

December 1, 2005

There are many spam comments on my English blog. They are not fun, of course. :-(
But, they sort of look informative for me. Because most of them are proper English !
I can study for free ! Thanks spam ! :-p

I came up with the idea of this article after I posted a comment on the later article yesterday.

I'm sort of drunk, he-he.