Sunday, January 22, 2012

Mayor of Matsuyama & Daifuku

Yasuhisa Shiozaki, elected representative for Ehime Prefecture in the Japanese Diet

A cool thing about being Mayor is that you get to officiate at ceremonies. This one was held at Temple Ishite-ji in February of 2006. The city officials are wearing traditional Samurai Kamishimo's (a garment worn over a kimono). They are tossing out ceremonial dried rice cakes (daifuku) filled with red bean paste, that will be toasted and eaten, by those who are lucky enough to catch any, when they get home. The crowd was quite intense when the daifuku were thrown out. It is considered good fortune to get them.

Link to the Mayor's page on the City's website (in Japanese)

My blog entry on making daifuku

Sunday, January 15, 2012


The place that has the back end of a Volkswagen as an awning is a restaurant in Matsuyama (past the Okaido) that serves Okonomiyaki. It is a cheap place to eat at.

Okonomiyaki looks like pizza but it is more of a pancake than anything else. It consists of batter and cabbage (mixed together) that is cooked on a tapanyaki and can be topped with most anything.

The Volkswagen looks like it is a 1968-73 model from the look of the rear fender. I used to drive a couple of older version VW's (with the wire frame fenders) back in the 70's. Lovely cars but not safe at all. What I liked about them then was the ease of repair and they were fun to drive. A light car but no front end to them at all. Essentially driving a tin can with no protection from an impact.

Japan Guide to Okonomiyaki

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Touchdown from Katsuyama Hill

As you exit the Ropeway, you are greeted with the regional products of Ehime Prefecture, such as Tobeyaki Pottery, the wonderful orange juice from the hills of Ehime, the indigo cloth products which are the colors of Matsuyama and the wonderful treats available in most of the shops.

Dress up and have your picture taken against the backdrop of one of the finest castles in Japan. The castle is used for many functions including wedding parties.

Starbucks is there but the locals can find coffee and treats in the local shops.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Happy 2012!

This picture was taken this evening as I was cooking out on the grill. Wishing everyone a happy and prosperous 2012!

Descending Katsuyama Hill

Going up and down the Castle Hill is free if you want to walk. You can take the ropeway or chairlift if you want an easier form of ascent or descent. The chairlift is the best if you enjoy the feeling of being out there.

Japan Guide to Matsuyama Castle