Happy New Year!

2019 is an epoch-making year in Japan.  Emperor Akihito will abdicate on April 30, and Crown Prince Naruhito will ascend to the throne on May 1, when a new era will starts.   The webmaster hopes that every tourists will find joy in Japan in 2019, too.

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Justice won in Yuru Chara Grand Prix 2018.

On Nov. 18, the webmaster visited Hanazono Central Park to attend Yuru Chara Grand Prix 2018. After the executive committee deleted online votes from suspicious accounts, Kapal, a green mascot, representing the Shiki City Culture and Sports Promotion Public Corporation came from behind to win the Grand Prix.  Kapal is a water sprite based on a local folk tale.  Since Kapal worked so hard, it looked tired at the awarding ceremony and was encouraged by other mascots.  The webmaster was deeply moved at Kapal's 11th-hour changeover and hopes that fair votes will be cast next year.

God of Pear

The webmaster visited Nashigamisama Jinja, which enshrines God of Pear, at the flagship store of Funassyiland (Finassui's official products retailer) in LaLaport Tokyo Bay.  The shrine was moved to the present place in February, 2018 from Funabashi Loft.  The webmaster prayed for a good harvest and rapid reconstruction and recovery from natural disasters.

Not in Kyoto

At a glance, the left photo seems to have been taken in Kyoto, but not so.  The landscape is uncrowded and idyllic for Kyoto, isn't it?  This is Esashi Fujiwara Heritage Park, an entertainment part mentioning Oshu Fujiwara Families' great accomplishments, located in Oshu City, Iwate Prefecture.   Visitors feel as if they could slip back in time to 10 centuries ago.  The park is known as a filming location for historic TV dramas and movies.  The webmaster had a 12-layered court kimono costume experience here.

ILC Symposium

On Aug. 5, ILC International Symposium was held at Ochanomizu University in Tokyo.  The webmaster attended the symposium.  Dr. Sheldon Lee Glashow and Dr. Barry Barish, Nobel Laureates in physics, made a passionate speech, hoping the construction of ILC in Japan.  As mentioned in "ILC/Tohoku" on June 1, 2017 in this blog, the webmaster believes that ILC will navigate the future of science.