Winter In Japan – Get the Tauntauns ready!

Surviving winter in Japan, especially the northern Tohoku region, can be a struggle; but it’s not impossible. With a little thought and careful planning anyone can pass through these treacherous times of chilliness relatively unscathed. Keep it toasty When the temperature starts to drop I know it’s time to set up possibly the greatest Japanese…

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Akita With A Friend Continued

Getting to know the locals is an essential part of blending and feeling comfortable in a foreign culture. Luckily for me I have found Japanese people to be very welcoming, particularly in the northern Tohoku region of the country. One of my Japanese co-teachers even invited me on a trip to stay with his family…

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Akita With A Friend

When beginning the journey of living in a foreign country it really helps to get some local friends. They can help with cultural barriers and situations requiring a deeper knowledge of the native language. Plus, they’ll know where all the best bars are. I’m actually quite a shy person, especially when it comes to talking…

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Halloween in Japan

In my childhood I had mixed feelings about Halloween. Sure, I enjoyed the sweets and the campy horror theme, but I was never keen on Trick or Treating. The idea of knocking on a stranger’s door never appealed and when I became old enough to be “the one who answered the door” I became resentful of…

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Ninohe Matsuri – Undeserved Fame

I’ve occasionally had the good fortune to take part in some of Japan’s fascinating cultural festivals. Sometimes the experience has been especially invigorating. On one such occurrence I was invited by my girlfriend’s extended family to go and participate in the Ninohe Matsuri. As well as being a healthy dip into local culture and traditions…

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Work in Japan – The Arrival

Flying half-way around the world can be a daunting thing, even more so when it’s to do a job you’ve no experience of, in an area that was recently devastated by a cataclysmic natural disaster. But for whatever reason, that’s exactly what I did in June 2011. I came to work in Japan. How does…

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My Car in Japan – A video

Anyone who comes to work in Japan as an English teacher, or in any profession really, will likely need to get a car. Especially if located in a rural area. In this, the first full video from Where? There! Teach., we’ll take a brisk tour around my vehicle and talk about how to handle gas stations. Let’s…

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Kimono Contest – Foreigners on Parade

Perhaps you’ve heard of kimonos? The colourful, elegant formal wear as much a part of Japan’s international identity as Samurai, Sushi and Saiyan power-ups. The other thing about them is that they are massively expensive. Not for a second have I ever entertained the idea of actually owning one of these delightful pieces. However, on…

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Traditional Dances of Iwate

Traditions are a vital part of Japan’s cultural image and many of them still play a very active part in modern society. The traditional dances of Iwate surface frequently during the course of the year. Festivals are an obvious place to catch them but there are also special performances that are often free. Sansa-tional My experience of…

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