How Do You Manage Your Stress?

Hello! It’s too humid and hot in Japan, and this weather kills me.
How have you been?

I’ve been feeling a lot of stress because of this weather, having a deadline or whatever.

Today I want to ask you how you relieve your stress. Of course, I’m sure everyone has some stress and sometimes they stress us out. In my case, I’m really weak at summer. This heat kills me and makes me down. I don’t want to do anything and become really lazy.

However, this summer I have a deadline and have to push myself to keep it. This thing stresses me out.

I started gardening, and it helps me feel stress less. Even so, I want to know how people maintain their stress and want to try it to me. So, please share your case with me!

As I mentioned that I started gardening, and I will write down about it on my next blog entry! See ya soon!!!

A Strong Will

Recently I’ve been keeping on reading books in English every single day, and it makes me very happy :) It took more than five years for me to put it in my routine work. I tried to do a lot of things to make it routine, but I always gave it up. To keep my goal (I’ve set a goal to read 48 books in English every year), I always had to push myself at the end of year. It was very hard, and I regretted why I didn’t keep reading constantly. Even though I learned from my mistakes, I couldn’t keep on reading ever day.

However, this year is different from usual! Somehow, I can keep on reading every day. I want to think what changed me.

Firstly, I think I’ve improved my reading skills, and it has become easier for me to find certain books for me.
Secondly, I’ve been showing my reading progress in public to use Facebook and Twitter, and it has become my motivation to keep reading.
Thirdly, I think I finally joy to read in my second language.

I have several high goals for books. Someday I want to read more advance books that I’m used to reading in Japanese.
Through this thing, I learned keep going is the most important thing for me to improve my skills. I’ve known it, but it’s easy to say and hard to do.

I really want to use this method to improve my painting skills. I’m a moody painter, and I sometimes can’t paint. I’ve still been struggling with putting it in my routine work. I want to have a STRONG will to keep on painting every single day from now on to improve my painting skills!

Japanese Food

Hi there!

In Japan we are in the middle of the rainy season, and I hate the season because it’s really moggy. After the season, we will have a really humid and hot summer season. Aw, they are really gloomy seasons for me.  I hope you have a good time.

I’ve heard Japanese food is getting more popular because of Anime and Manga. People who love Anime and Manga have been seeing a lot of Japanese foods through them,  and they started getting more interested in our foods. Is it true? If so, it’s very interesting for me. I’m very curious when people from overseas hear about Japanese foods, what kind of foods they imagine. While showing my experiences, I want to show real Japanese foods in Japan.

I’ve experienced to eat so-called Japanese food at a restaurant in the States. My friend, Fresia from Bolivia invited me to the restaurant while we were traveling together.

Japanese Restaurant in New Orleans

Japanese Restaurant in New Orleans

 

It’s completely different from our foods in Japan. Even though it’s different, it was really good. I loved the American Japanese food, called Teppan-Yaki.

Japanese Restaurant in New Orleans

Japanese Restaurant in New Orleans

At the restaurant they served us a cup of soup, but it was mix of Chinese and Japanese. The spoon is Chinese. We don’t eat Japanese soup with the Chinese spoon.

Japanese Restaurant in New Orleans

Japanese Restaurant in New Orleans

 

When we go to Teppan-Yaki Japanese restaurant, we can enjoy seeing such the performance that we can’t see in Japan. The chef was from Thailand, and we enjoyed chatting when I told him I’ve been there last year.

Japanese Restaurant in New Orleans

Japanese Restaurant in New Orleans

 

Japanese Restaurant in New Orleans

Japanese Restaurant in New Orleans

 

Japanese Restaurant in New Orleans

Japanese Restaurant in New Orleans

 

Japanese Restaurant in New Orleans

Japanese Restaurant in New Orleans

 

While looking at the chef’s performance, we enjoyed eating. I ordered seafoods, and I ate grilled veggies, fried rice, salad, soup and grilled seafoods. All of them were very tasty.  The only think that they disappointed me was that they were using really cheap dishes for the foods. In Japanese foods, dishes are a very important part for us because we enjoy the foods themselves while looking at the decoration on really pretty dishes.

I also ate Japanese food in Canada last month. The chef was from Korea, and they also used very cheap dishes.

Here are real Japanese foods we are used to.

 

Japanese Foods

Japanese Foods

 

Japanese Foods

Japanese Foods

 

Japanese Foods

Japanese Foods

 

Japanese Foods

Japanese Foods

 

Japanese Foods

Japanese Foods

 

Japanese Foods

Japanese Foods

 

Japanese Foods

Japanese Foods

 

Japanese Foods

Japanese Foods

 

Japanese Foods

Japanese Foods

 

Japanese Foods

Japanese Foods

 

Japanese Foods

Japanese Foods

 

Japanese Foods

Japanese Foods

 

All foods belong to one person. The potion is small .

When you looked at the photos of real Japanese foods, what did you think? Please compare the American Japanese foods.

I think the real Japanese foods seem to be more delicious for you because we concern about decoration, dishes, colors and which season we eat. My family and I went to the Japanese restaurant in this rainy season. So, they served us some cold foods. You can see some ice cubes in some photos, and they are cold foods. Eating cold foods in this season is so good because we can make our body cooler.

I think Japanese foods are almost art because we can enjoy looking at them before eating. They are very colorful, and we use expensive dishes for the good foods.

Do you know that our Japanese foods have been registered as a World Heritage Site? I’m very proud of it.

I hope you can understand about Japanese foods in Japan via my blog post.

 

My Phobia

Hi there! Long time no see!!! How have you been? I’ve been doing well, and I returned to Japan from Canada a couple of weeks ago.

Do you have phobias? Today I want to share my phobia with you. Before studying conversational English and studying abroad in the States, I hadn’t realized that I’m scared of some small talk. Seriously, I’m scared of small talk.

When I go to the States, people love speaking to STRANGERS. You receive a lot of small talk everywhere. Since we Japanese people are not good at small talk like American people do, I have no idea how I response it. It always makes me very nervous. You might not understand what I’m talking about. All right. I’m picking up some examples for you.

You are in a Wal-Mart and waiting for your turn in a line. When you get your turn, a casher speaks to you, “Hello? What’s up? Today is really pretty, isn’t it?”. I have no clue how I should response because in Japan we don’t receive such small talk at cashers. When we go to a restaurant, a waitress/waiter are more pushy. They love talking to us. Even though we order our meals, they sometimes come to our table and ask “Everything is OK? Don’t you want anything else? Did you watch a game last night? Bula bula bula………”. I know they show kindness and niceness to us customers to get more tips, but we don’t have tips in Japan. We don’t need such the service at the restaurants.

I still remember that when I was a kid, we had a first MacDonald in our small town. I was scared of ordering there because we had received small talk from an employee like that “Anything else? ” with a big smile. It was so weired for me. Since I was not used to it, I couldn’t refuse to order something else. I tended to spend more money.

As thinking about my experience at the MacDonald, I think American fast restaurants brought small talk to Japan with their fast foods. Now, I can handle it in Japanese, but I’m not good at it in my second language. I sometimes can’t response well when I soddenly receive unexpected questions from strangers at shops, restaurants, airplanes or wherever.

I hope after improving my speaking skills, I can response without feeling any stress.

Do We Asian People Like Poop Jokes????

Hi there!
I’ve been in the States again to improve my painting skills. I’ve been staying at my friend from Michigan’s house for three weeks.

Yesterday something interesting happened. A friend of mine from Thailand posted some interesting photos on his Facebook, and he is a mutual friend between my American friend, Gay and me. He has been traveling around Taiwan and visited an unique restaurant “Modern Toilet Restaurant”.

The restaurant is quite popular in Taiwan, and if we want to get into the restaurant, we need the reservation. The place is really unique because all seats are toilet seats and tables are made from square glass covered bathtub. Not only that, they have been serving foods on a toilet shaped dishes, and the menu naming sounds really disgusting like bloody poop diarrhea or whatever. However, I don’t want people to misunderstand the restaurant. The foods are quite normal.

When my American friend, Gay looked at some photos that our Thai friend has posted, she was grossed out. She made a fuss and started searching what “Modern Toilet Restaurant” is. She called her friends, son and grandsons. She also shared some links on her Facebook.

I didn’t understand why she was making such a fuss. Then, I realized that it’s a part of Asian culture. The restaurant’s idea came from our popular comic “Dr. Slump”, so, I’m kind of familiar with the kind of joke even though I’ve never been there before. I explained her that it’s Asian culture, but when I opened Facebook, our Thai friend received a lot of negative comments on his post. I think the restaurant is cool, and if we had it in Japan, I would want to go there, but Gay and most Western people just can’t accept the kind of joke.

I think it’s one of the most difficult things for us to understand jokes, and I learned I shouldn’t say jokes relate to poop things to my Western friends. They don’t have the sense of humor that we do. I think even we grow-ups say some jokes relates to poop to our friends, and we laugh out at them. To be honest with you, I like these kind of jokes.

If you are interested in what the Modern Toilet Restaurant is, please google it. You can see a bunch of funny pictures. Before going to the pages, I want to warn you that you might be grossed out.

Cherry Blossoms in Osaka!

Hi there!!!

Looooooooooooooooooong time no see! I’m really sorry for the delay.

I finally came back to my blog again!

As you know, in Japan we have a great cherry blossoms season right now. I live in Osaka since last year, and my family and I enjoyed both night viewing and day viewing of cherry blossoms this year.

I hope you also can enjoy viewing cherry blossoms via my blog post!

 

We went to the Osaka Mint to enjoy looking at the night views, but we also met so many people there.

Cherry Blossoms in the Osaka Mint

Cherry Blossoms in the Osaka Mint

 

Cherry Blossoms in the Osaka Mint

Cherry Blossoms in the Osaka Mint

 

Cherry Blossoms in the Osaka Mint

Cherry Blossoms in the Osaka Mint

 

Cherry Blossoms in the Osaka Mint

Cherry Blossoms in the Osaka Mint

 

Cherry Blossoms in the Osaka Mint

Cherry Blossoms in the Osaka Mint

 

Cherry Blossoms in the Osaka Mint

Cherry Blossoms in the Osaka Mint

 

Cherry Blossoms in the Osaka Mint

Cherry Blossoms in the Osaka Mint

 

Cherry Blossoms in the Osaka Mint

Cherry Blossoms in the Osaka Mint

 

I learned I should go to the place at day time because there were so many people. Next year, I want to go there then.

 

I walked to a different place where we also can enjoy looking at cherry blossoms especially called “yae-zakura” in Japanese.

 

Yae-Zakura in My Neighborhood

Yae-Zakura in My Neighborhood

 

Yae-Zakura in My Neighborhood

Yae-Zakura in My Neighborhood

 

Yae-Zakura in My Neighborhood

Yae-Zakura in My Neighborhood

 

Yae-Zakura in My Neighborhood

Yae-Zakura in My Neighborhood

 

Yae-Zakura in My Neighborhood

Yae-Zakura in My Neighborhood

 

Yae-Zakura in My Neighborhood

Yae-Zakura in My Neighborhood

 

I really love this sort of cherry blossoms, and I really enjoyed them!

I painted the cherry blossoms on a plate and have showed the photos on my another blog.

If you are interested in my artwork, please visit here: http://sommerstein0411.wordpress.com/

 

Thank you so much!

2013 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2013 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

The concert hall at the Sydney Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 9,500 times in 2013. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House, it would take about 4 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.

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