Category: Asia

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Adjusting to life after holidays

So I'm back. And as predicted, Japan was an absolute blast. It never fails to delight as a holiday destination and I think this break was the best yet! I'll share my adventures from Fukuoka, Nagasaki and Tokyo in a lot more detail over the coming weeks, but for now a few thoughts on adjusting ...

Some weekend brain exercise

This morning, I went to the first class in my new Japanese course at City Lit. I'm heading back to Tokyo in July and really want to be able to use more Japanese while I'm there. The little snatches I've picked up along the way over the last four years aren't really enough to get ...

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My trip to the Traveler’s Factory, Japan

It may sound strange, but one of my highlights of last month's visit to Japan was getting to visit the Traveler's Factory store in Tokyo. They stock the (formerly Midori) Traveler's Notebook products that I've been obsessing about over the last year, so I was determined to visit their 'HQ' and see the various products ...

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Making friends…

... At this evening's Hyper Japan in Wapping's Tobacco Dock. This was the 'Christmas' version and so was smaller than the summer spectacular they host in Olympia. But all the usual favourites were there tonight: excellent food, impressive cosplay, Japanese music and quite a few bemused parents guiding their Kawaii-obsessed daughters through the crowds.    I ...

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Just a hint of Tokyo at home

Last weekend, we spotted an amazing print for sale in Spitalfields Market. The very talented Gerry Buxton was selling some of his incredible pieces and we both stopped in our tracks when we saw it. After the briefest of chats with Gerry about its dimensions and swapping tales of Tokyo, we headed home to measure ...

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Japanese stationery lust

I spent a happy hour in a local Tokyu Hands store here in Hiroshima yesterday. And in doing so, I basically cleared them out of their entire stock of Midori Traveler's notebooks and accessories. (No, not really - it just looked that way...) I finally got a traveler's notebook, a passport notebook and a whole ...

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Hyper Japan! Hyper! Japan!

I spent this afternoon at my first 'Hyper Japan' expo in London. Mind. Literally. Blown. It was basically a hall full of all the things I love: cosplay, amazing Japanese food, more cosplay, karaoke, giant video game characters. And some cosplay. It's very hard to do it justice in a single blog post. It was ...

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More plans for Japan

We spent some quality time this morning fleshing out plans for our September return trip to Japan. Our itinerary has been narrowed down to: Fly London to Tokyo Immediately get on flight to Osaka 5 nights in Osaka, including day trips to Kyoto Shinkansen train to Hiroshima 3 nights in Hiroshima Fly to Tokyo 5 nights in ...

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Heroic Japanese drinks?

I passed by this drinks machine near Ueno Park in Tokyo and couldn't resist taking a photo. I was secretly hoping it would be stocked with some form of Marvel Comics-related drinks... X-Men Cola? Mutant Juice? Sadly, it was full of the same drinks all other machines seem to have in Tokyo - coffee, green ...