Lifestyle

Living with coronavirus in a Japanese share house

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Rents can be expensive for people wanting to live in the middle of a big metropolis like Tokyo. That’s why a lot of young people decide to move into “share houses“, which offer private, single-room accommodations with shared facilities at much more reasonable prices. Strangers under one roof enjoying the perks of communal living… Read

Lifestyle

Titan trash can to be placed near a Coca-Cola vending machine in Oita to help promote recycling

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If you’ve lived in Japan, you probably know that the country has very strict rules on how its trash is separated. While many other countries just have blanket recycling boxes–and some don’t even care if you put recycling in with the regular trash–in Japan, you have to not only separate your… Read

Lifestyle

What’s in a name: Honorifics, titles and nicknames in Japan

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Do you have a nickname? Do you like it? Today some elementary schools in Japan are telling students not to call their classmates by nicknames. Some schools go far as to have all students call each other by last names with the gender-neutral honorifics. This is to stop bullying between students, and while I’m all… Read

Lifestyle

Enjoy free-to-read books and apple tea in natural surroundings at Autumn Foliage Library

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If there’s anyone who knows about the importance of spending time in nature, it’s the Japanese. They do, after all, have a word that encapsulates this relaxing activity: shinrin-yoku (森林浴) or “forest bathing.” Coined in 1982 by Japan’s Forestry Agency to make forests a more popular relaxation spot, shinrin-yoku gained popularity in… Read

Lifestyle

Personal 'hishaku' ladles keep traditions alive

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In normal times, when visiting a Japanese temple or shrine complex, the first thing you would be expected to do would be to wash your hands at the water basin located near the entrance. This process is part of an ancient ritual known as chozu, in which worshippers will use… Read

Lifestyle

Take part in Global Goals Jam 2021 and aim for a more sustainable future together

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As the world begins to take sustainability more seriously, the time has come for individuals to step up and tackle issues in their own regions in order to better the future for the whole world. Global Goals Jam is a two-day workshop that uses design thinking to tackle regional challenges relating… Read

Lifestyle

You can buy yourself a mini log cabin for telework at Tokyo’s Shibuya Loft

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With the understandable rise of telework in Japan over the course the pandemic, many companies have been releasing furniture and devices to accommodate those who have to spend more time at home than usual. Recently, these have included privacy tents for telework and online drinking, revolutionary outlet-equipped high seated kotatsu, and even… Read

Lifestyle

UK's last cassette shop reels in nostalgic music lovers

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Tucked away in a corner of the top floor of an indoor market in Manchester, northwest England, is the last shop in Britain dedicated to selling cassettes. Mars Tapes crams around 1,000 cassettes, a Coca-Cola radio, boom boxes, vintage editions of the Walkman cassette player and other tape-related accessories in… Read

Lifestyle

Nature meets nostalgia: Treehouses return in style

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Anthropologists believe our ancient human ancestors spent their time in trees, so it should be no surprise we love treehouses today. Treehouses of all kinds are experiencing a renaissance. When an acre-size slice of land in Gold Hill, Colorado, came on the market earlier this year, local resident Jessica Brookhart,… Read

Lifestyle

9/11 brought heartbreak to Japan as well

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Perhaps Kofi Annan, the former UN Secretary General, said it best back in 2006, on the fifth anniversary of the attacks: “[The September 11 attacks] cut us all to the core, for they were an attack on humanity itself.” Besides the United States, 91 other countries lost citizens that day,… Read

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