Kyushu Christmas trip

December 30th, 2014

Huis Ten Bosch

This winter break being far away from home, far away from our families, Amy and I went on an adventure around Kyushu to see everything it has to offer. For our 6 day trip we, went to Nagasaki and the deserted island of Gunkanjima, Huis Ten Bosch theme park, Beppu city and the town of Yufuin. I’ll try to write up as much as I can, but it is late and we are sleepy.

Read More

Merry Kurisumasu

December 25th, 2014

Kurisu

Another year, another Christmas. As I just realised, I skipped last years Christmas post, but that was due to the long post about my blog redesign, which is still beautiful as ever.

But this year, I am taking a well deserved break from everything and traveling around Kyushu. Amy and I have already visited Nagasaki, Gunkanjima, and Huis Ten Bosch; and we will continue on to Beppu and Yufuin tomorrow. And don’t worry, there will be a post with my impressions and photos from this trip.

Lastly,  to all you folk out there in the world, Merry Christmas!

Sakurajima – 桜島

December 21st, 2014

sakurajima

What are your first thoughts when you hear the words active volcano? Mine used to be: “run away as fast as I can”. But ever since I came to Kagoshima these words have changed to something more calm. Thats right, even though Sakurajima volcano is active and erupts about 3 times a day, it is still fairly safe and there are even people living on the used-to-be island. In 1914 a great eruption happened, and thus Sakurajima was connected to the peninsula and lost its status as an island, but the name remains and literally means Cherry Blossom Island.

Read More

What languages sound like

December 8th, 2014

We know that learning languages is hard work, and whenever we hear people speak in a language that we have yet to master (or even start learning) we try to imitate them, which of course causes a lot of laughter and comments saying: “We don’t speak like that!”

Well here is a YouTube video of a Japanese guy doing an impression of that foreign language sound like to him. He is pretty spot on for most of them!

The red leaves of Kirishima – 霧島

November 22nd, 2014

Kirishima

One day, I receive a message from our Turkish gaijin Burak saying that we are going to Kirishima. It was rather spontaneous, but I am not the kind of person to decline an invitation to a trip, especially if I have never been to the place before. The reason for this trip was simple: to see the beautiful red leaves that cover Japanese trees in Autumn. And so we hired a car and drove to the Kirishima Jingu (shrine). Another trip together with the Gaijin Gang.

Read More

Senganen Flowers

November 9th, 2014

Gayjin Gang

Kagoshima city may be small in comparison to Tokyo or Osaka, but because of that you can enjoy traditional Japan much more, than if you were in a metropolis. Todays outing was just that, a trip to the traditional gardens of senganen in the north of Kagoshima, where they are currently holding a chrysanthemum festival.

Read More

Saga International Balloon Fiesta

November 3rd, 2014

whaloon
This weekend there was a big balloon festival in Saga and of course Amy and I went there to check it out. Only problem was that there were no balloons.

Read More

FIFA 2018 Logo

October 31st, 2014

In 2012 it was decided that the next big world football event – FIFA 2018, will be held in Russia! And last week the official logo was unveiled from a place far far away. If you think of Russia, what comes to mind? Snow, bears, vodka and AK-47? Maybe for some of you, but for educated people, Russia is a symbol of feudal culture, old and deep history, and of course the conquering of space in the modern age. So the announcement of the FIFA 2018 logo, was made from the International Space Station on the 29th of October.

With this logo, the creators want to show the heart and soul of Russia, and I believe they did a great job with that.

Its 4 years away, but I am already excited to see how this whole tournament will play out.

Статья на русском и видео ролик с передачи Вечерний Ургант: rus.delfi.lv

Sharing is Caring

October 30th, 2014

This japanese ad for the PS4 and its new share functionality is really touching. It shows that anyone can be a gamer, anyone has the potential to be successful, and that anyone a choice in life. Watch it and see what I mean.

Poster Session

October 23rd, 2014

(hover over the image to reveal the controls for viewing the album)

I appologise for the huge delay of this post, but here it is. On the 1st of July Kagoshima University had their annual international students poster session. During this event, a chosen number of students make A0 sized posters and small speeches about their countries. The topics can include anything from just general overview to more in depth explanation of things like: events, festivals, government, education system, etc. Of course I was asked to take part in this as well, and so I prepared a beautiful poster about my hometown Riga. I talked about the geography, population, transport, food, sports and our gorgeous art nouveau buildings.

I had a lot of students and older people come up to me and ask me questions about Riga and Latvia, especially about the food (Japanese people love food). The old guy in glasses listening to my explanations of Riga you see in the photo album is the head of Kagoshima University. He said he went to Estonia about 30 years ago, but has yet to travel to Latvia.

I hope I can participate in more events like this one as not only is it good practice for my Japanese skills, I also really enjoy designing posters or signs, thats why I spent around 4 hours making my poster look that pretty.