Increasing Favorite Things

After breakfast, I always have a cup of coffee with a piece of something sweet.  I had believed I like coffee much better than black tea, because the aroma stimulates me, and the bitterness makes the sweet tastier.  However, I had an interesting experience the other day.  An acquaintance gave me a tin of black tea.  The container was very pretty, and I wondered how it would taste.  The next morning, I decided to have the tea instead of coffee.  As soon as I poured boiling water over the tea leaves, the sweet aroma promptly made me feel good.  And the flavor was elegant.  I haven’t thought tea is such a nice drink.  It has changed my notion on black tea.  Then I thought about why I was so moved by it. 

Firstly, the quality of it was superior to ones I had tasted before.  In the first place, not being particularly interested in it, I had not made any effort to find my favorite tea leaves.

Secondly, my palate might have been more refined over the years.  It might be the very time I could really appreciate the subtle flavor.

  That experience gave me a good lesson.  Whenever I have a chance, I should abandon prejudice against food and try it anyway.  I may be able to find new favorite ones and it will certainly make my life more enjoyable.  It can be applied not only to food but other things such as art, movies, books, and music.  I might have matured my sensitivity and developed a greater appreciation of beauty.  This idea makes me excited.

I am grateful to the acquaintance for giving me a chance to think about it.



Ichinomiya Morning Service

When you visit Ichinomiya city where I live, I recommend you  go to a coffeehouse or a café in the morning.  When you order a cup of coffee, the shop serves you a delicious complementary breakfast.  As an example, a café “ Kohikann” serves you Danish bread, boiled egg, salad, and a bowl of soup besides coffee only for 420yenn!

   This is a custom called” Ichinomiya Morning Service” which originated in the 1950’s.  It was a time the wool textile industry of the town was flourishing.  As the factories were too noisy, the owners and the clients had business meetings at coffeeshops over a cup of coffee almost every morning.  To express their gratitude, those shops started serving a boiled egg and peanuts for free.  That’s the origin of the “morning service”.  Nowadays, it has been more enriched.

This year, Ichinomiya Chamber of Commerce established “Ichinomiya Morning Council”which encompasses ninety-six shops.


   Looking at the homepage is quite enjoyable.  You can find detailed information on each shop.   You’ll probably see more than a few that appeals to you.

This October, the council will hold “Ichinomiya Morning Competition”.  The winner is decided by customer vote.  I imagine the competition between shops will be quite tough.  They need to strike a balance between the cost and the quality.   If they were not in Ichinomiya City, they might be able to offer a (high priced)“morning set”, instead of  (the very reasonable) “morning service”. 

On the other hand, they can take advantage of the event, because they have more chances to attract new clients: not only Ichinomiya citizen but people from other districts.  Once they experience the lovely breakfast, they might become their regular customers.  I hope this strategy will be successful.  It will be nice if they can thrive together and improve this unique culture.

Thank you, JAF!

When my husband and I were driving a highway, our car got a flat tire as it run over a fallen object.  He stopped our car at the edge of the road, and I called JAF, Japan Automobile Federation. 

The service technician arrived about twenty minutes later, and quickly got to work.   He secured our safety and cordoned off the area so as not to cause another accident, examined the flat tyer, explained to us how he would deal with it, and changed it to a spare tire. 

After that, he explained to us it is better to change all four tyers at the nearest tyer shop, because driving with the spare tyer is unstable on highways.  Following his advice, we left the highway and bought new tires at a local tire shop.  With them, we could go home safely.

 His work was brilliantly meticulous and speedy.  I was so impressed!  For me, he looked like a hero. 

Although it was a bit expensive, we were lucky as this accident resulted in just a flat tyer, because it could have lead to a more serious accident.  

Two weeks have passed since then.  Now, that accident has become one of my good memories.  It was nice to share the sense of anxiety and reassurance with my husband.  That operator of JAF helped it a lot.



Protecting Japanese Mountain Culture

In order to maintain safety trails, the mountain lodges locate in the south part of the North Alps, the pertinent local governments, and MOE, the Minister of Environment decided to collect donations from trekkers for the month of September. 

            Mountain lodges have kept trails in good conditions using a part of their income. However, since the pandemic, their sales has been badly decreasing, and it has made it difficult for them to continue the work.

            After the trial period, MOE and the local governments will establish a system of mountain climbing fees.

            As a trekker, I think this is a good attempt for the following reasons.

Firstly, trekkers can enjoy safety trekking. Without the maintenance, trails are collapsed easily and cause sad accidents. Considering the fact, collecting donations is valuable.

Secondly, trekkers can remember the importance of safe trails, which they did not pay attention to before. By paying the donation, they can appreciate the effort of the mountain lodges.

Finally, it preserves the mountain lodges and mountain culture. In Japan, trekkers can enjoy hiking from one peak of a mountain to the next one, and such style of trekking is an excellent culture. Without mountain lodges, we are never able to enjoy it because the lodges not only maintain the trails but offer accommodations and meals, and places for camping. In addition to that, when an accident occurs, they promptly notify rescue services. Those are the remarkable feats Japanese people can be proud of.

            I will willingly cooperate with the new system when I go trekking.  Besides, I would like to see the outcome. It is not exaggerated to say this trial system will improve Japanese mountain trekking culture.




Let’s put on socks!

Whenever I see girls whose ankles are naked, I am always worried about their health.

At the inside of an ankle, there is an important therapy point called “Saninkou.”  It is especially important for women.  If they expose the point without putting on socks, their entire bodies get cold from the inside.

            Here is a curious story. One of my clients had not been able to have a baby for a long time after marriage although she and her husband had been trying.  So, I treated her with an acupuncture and massage therapy to make it easier for her to become pregnant.  When she left our therapy office, I noticed her ankles were completely naked even though it was in chilly winter. Then I explained to her she should keep her ankles warm.  After a few months, she got pregnant. She told me she had warmed up her ankles not only by putting on thick socks but also legwarmers.

            I will not say she got pregnant only by warming her ankles.  But I believe it helped her a lot.

            Therefore, I highly recommend you to put on socks which have a suitable length throughout the year.


HP of Kenkodo



Mt. Tsubakuro

My husband I climbed Mt. Tsubakuro.


The weather was good and I could watch even Mt. Fuji.  At the top of the mountain, we could enjoy the solem scenery of Tateyama Mountains, Mt. Yari, and Mt. Tsurugi.  We were just lucky!!


We could see Mt. Fuji!!




At the top of Mt. Tsubakuro(2763M)


The Price of Salt

This is a love story around the1950’ between two women, Therese and Carol.  In those days, people had severe prejudice against LGBT.   However, I felt even though they are lesbians, the feeling of love is just as the same as that of heterosexuals.  It is pure, beautiful and even painful.  Reading this, I remember the sweet feeling of my younger days:  I became happy, worried, and lonely to see the change of a guy’s attitude.  Whenever I was not with him, I could help thinking about him. 

I had not read love stories before.  But this book gave me a genuinely beautiful reading experience.