January 24, 2009

Nogawa Park and Jindai Botanical Garden (January 25th)

Shibateranthis pinnatifida (Setsubun-sou)
It started blooming at Nogawa Park.

We went to see Shibateranthis pinnatifida (Setsubun-sou) at Nogawa Park and then to Jindai Botanical Garden. At Jindai Botanical Garden they held an exhibition of Adonis amurensis (Fukuju-sou) flowers and quite a few plum blossoms were blooming already.

Shibateranthis pinnatifida (Setsubun-sou)

Narcissus tazetta var. chinensis (Nihon Suisen)

Prunus mume (Ume)

Prunus mume (Ume)

Chimonanthus praecox (Roubai)
This whole area was filled with the sweet smell.

Chimonanthus praecox (Roubai)

Chimonanthus praecox (Roubai)

Christmas Rose

Christmas Rose

Adonis amurensis (Fukuju-sou)

Adonis amurensis (Fukuju-sou)

Adonis amurensis (Fukuju-sou)

Adonis amurensis (Fukuju-sou)

Adonis amurensis (Fukuju-sou)

January 18, 2009

Oyama Dairi Park, Tamasakai (January 18th)

"Dondo-yaki", which is the event people burn the old talismans or the calligraphy kids wrote wishing for good luck or improvement in the new year.

We went to see Dondo-yaki at the Oyama Dairi Park in Tamasakai. In a few seconds after they set fire, it became so hot and huge that people moved back. After the fire went down, we roasted Mayudama (small balls made from rice flour) and it tasted much better than last year, because we succeeded in roasting them properly this time.

The kids setting fire with grown-ups' help.

In a few seconds.

The fire spreading so quickly.

Firefighters were there, too.

Roasting the Mayudama.

The Mayudama after roasting.

January 11, 2009

National Science Museum, Ueno (January 11th)

In the National Science Museum.
Beautiful glasses.

We went to Ueno to check out the National Science Museum. It has big space and shows lots of kinds of things, so we were almost overwhelmed with it.

Interesting building.



January 2, 2009

Jindaiji Area (January 2nd)

Jindaiji temple. Lots of people were there to wish for the new year.

We went to Jindaiji to wish for this new year's good luck.
We tried the Soba reastaurant we had never been to, which right in front of the entrance of the temple. In the restaurant, you can see the pond outside, and we had lunch upstairs so we enjoyed nice view, too. We had a little bit of Sake there. After lunch we went to the botanical garden. They held the exhibition of Rohdea japonica (Omoto), which is one of the traditional cultivated plants in Japan. I didn't know there are so many kinds and some of them are really expensive!

The Soba shop, Ganso Shimada-ya.

The view form the restaurant.

Soba and Tempura.

Rohdea japonica (Omoto)

Rohdea japonica (Omoto)

Rohdea japonica (Omoto)

Rohdea japonica (Omoto), named "Flying Dragon".

"Seven plants of Spring"...Japanese people have these seven plants, some of which are recognized as just weeds, cooked in Okayu (watery soft rice) on January 7th to wish for good health.

Eucharis grandiflora (Yuucharisu, Amazon Lily) in the greenhouse.
One of the popular material flowers for wedding bouquet these days.

Winter sky.

Sunset sky.

January 1, 2009

Funagata, Yamagata (December 29th - January 1st)

Oguni River...on the way to Wakaayu hot spring on foot from my home.

We went back to my hometown for New Year's by night bus from Yaesu near the Tokyo station.
We went to the hot spring in the town. It was nice to bathe feeling snow falling on your head.

Rice field covered with snow.

Oguni River.

The view of orchard form the Shinkansen express.

We had this bento on Shinkansen express. It uses Yonezawa Beef and tastes really good! Of course, the rice is also nice and warm because they brought them in at Yonezawa Station as soon as they were made.