This Year’s Christmas

Christmas has passed, but now everyone’s getting ready for New Year celebrations. New Years in Japan is one of the most culturally significant dates on the calendar, far more than Christmas. People queue outside the post office doors to send their nengajo (New Years Cards), while others line up to withdraw cash for otoshidama (gift money for children). Families decorate their houses with kadomatsu and order osechi (traditional New Year’s food) for extortionate prices. So its fucking nuts everywhere. Continue reading “This Year’s Christmas”

A British Fair in Japan

Occasionally the Mitsukoshi Department store in Hiroshima organises a regional food and goods fair based on a specific area of Japan or from around the world. During this past week, there’s been a British Fair offering “real” Britishness in the form of various stalls and temporary cafes. I tend to avoid these foreign attempts at British culture. Usually my critical and cynical side takes over and it typically ends up being a disappointment. Toad in the Hole without gravy, scones the size of pennies, and serving milk tea with syrup are a few examples I’ve unfortunately experienced. But with my girlfriend intrigued by British Culture and especially baking, I found myself being dragged along. Continue reading “A British Fair in Japan”

Baking Mince Pies in Japan

I’ve already explained my fondness for Christmas Mince Pies, and its seems that I’ve unfortunately inflicted my girlfriend and her family with this seasonal, baked addiction. My wonderful mother has been sending M&S pies in her care packages, but they’ve always been gobbled up in a couple of days. And it seems that Christmas Stollen has stolen

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Christmas. Bah Humbug!

The Christmas decorations have been up since October and the insufferable music is playing on loop everywhere;  J-Pop Christmas songs with broken English….kill me now!!! This will be the third Christmas I’ve spent in Japan, and it remains one of the most “depressing” times of the year. My Facebook feed has been plastered with pictures of decorated trees, Mariah Carey live performances, and the god-awful John Lewis advert.

Continue reading “Christmas. Bah Humbug!”