Etsy’s Translation Project & Who “English Allergy Japanese” Really Are

I love handmade crafts :-). If you have an online shop of your handmade crafts and arts with Etsy, here is a good news: Etsy is currently undergoing translation of their website into Japanese. You might have heard of so-called “English allergy” of the Japanese. That is, only a small percentage of the Japanese are “confident” enough to communicate in English in day to day situations. They don’t dare to buy anything online unless they can communicate with the online shop in Japanese language. This, in turn, makes business opportunities for “import service providers”. There are a number of such personal services available for the Japanese. The import service providers basically bridge …

Roses in Safety Islands

Roses are the flower of my living district, Shiroishi ward in Sapporo city, and we can enjoy roses in the safety islands along Kanjodori Boulevard. The budget probably comes from the Hokkaido prefecture.  I would definitely say YES for an increase of the budget to make the view better. There had been an exquisite nice rose garden in the hillside of  Mt. Moiwa that commanded a nice view of Sapporo city.  Although the garden was privately owned, it had been open for public.  I think that many of the Sapporo citizens were disappointed to hear the garden was closed. The largest rose garden in Hokkaido is the one in Iwamizawa, …

Do they have winter tires for bicycles?

It seems to me that my neighbors love bicycles so much and they cannot get rid of riding on them even during the winter 🙂 I doubt that they have winter tires for bicycles, however, postman’s motor bikes do put on winter tires during winter. Yes! They deliver mails with motorbikes, even on the icy road in Sapporo! With a full load of mails packed in the bag attached to the handlebar and in a box on the rear seat, postman’s driving technique is really “Kamiwaza.”

Sapporo Snow Festival

The 65th Sapporo Snow Festival is now underway! If you have a chance to visit the festival, I strongly recommend to see the sculpture during the night time, too.  The lighting show is really something. It’s damn cold though 🙂 For your information, the Snow Festival is held in early February each year. The official English information is here.

New Year’s Day Ritual

Here in Sapporo, mass of the people pay a visit to Hokkaido Jingu (shrine) during the new year holidays.  Particularly on the fist day of the year, you will witness that people are jammed in line all the way from the nearby subway station up to the shrine. This event is called “hatsumoude” in Japanese. People pay a visit to a nearby Shinto shrine or Buddhist temple during the new year days.  It is intended to drive away any defilement and pray for the family’s health and prosperity. I think it is safe to say that shrines (Shnito) or temples (Buddhism) do not matter in this occasion. I know it sounds strange …