August 10, 2008

Late-summer Greetings from Very Muggy Tokyo

残暑お見舞い申し上げます zansho omimai moushiagemasu is a common greeting card message that Japanese use during this season. 残暑 Zansho or late-summer refers to around the period between August 8th through September 20th. I've just published a post wishing my readers good health on my Japanese blog.

If you are planning a trip to Japan, I urge you to avoid summer, especially August. It gets as hot as 94 degrees, was 96 degrees last Friday, and it's very muggy. When you walk outside, you sweat like you are in a steam bath. If you have been to Japan in summer, you know exactly what I mean. I miss the dry summer in California...

During this season, you should also expect evening showers and thunderstorms. Oh, this post sounds like a weather forecast!Speaking of weather, you may want to check out sites like this.

Since we use Celsius in Japan, I found it difficult to convert Fahrenheit to Celsius when I was living in the U.S. The calculation goes like, "98(℉)-30=68. 68÷2=34. 34+2=36(℃)."

To beat summer heat fatigue, eel is one of the best food choices because it's very nutritious, rich in vitamin A, B1, B2, and E. Many Japanese eat grilled eel on Doyou no Ushi no Hi or Midsummer Day(s) of the Ox during the hottest summer (July 24th and August 5th this year). We have eel throughout the year but the consumption of eel or うなぎ/鰻 unagi in Japanese reaches its peak on the day (s).

Do you still want to visit Japan during summer?
If so, you may want to eat eel to survive!

August 3, 2008

Airship Flying over Tokyo

You should always carry a camera because you don't know when you run across something amazing and/or bloggable.

I went to the library located on the 49th floor of Roppongi Hills the other day. When I was having some lemon and cranberry soda, something huge caught my eyes. It was flying close to the tower. "What the heck is that?"

It's an airship called the Zeppelin NT. It's sort of like a moving billboard, flying faster than I imagined so that it was a little difficult to capture it. (Sorry about the quality!) Don't you think it looks like a whale?

The airship is very rare.

At present, there are only three Zeppelin NTs in the entire world and only two of those can be used for commercial purposes. Nippon Airship Corporation's Zeppelin NT is the only one outside of Germany.
(Source: Nippon Airship Corporation website )

The price for a 90-minute-sightseeing flight over Tokyo is from 148,000 yen (≈$1,375.20). I heard that the flight tickets are often sent as anniversary gifts. If you are interested, please contact Nippon Airship Corporation and have an unforgettable flight!