Tag Archives: ryokan

Primer: Travelling Japan / places to go, getting around, accomms, culture, etiquette and geography

A rather rough overview originally compiled in advance of friends coming to Okayama for wedding. Re-purposed in slightly more general terms for logistical convenience as needed.

See also: “Travelling to and Around Okayama, Japan,” “Japanese Culture and Language Primer” and other resources in this archive including video guides. 

Japan Ramble Primer

Japan can be intimidating, even for seasoned travellers. You arrive to massive sticker shock, tiny octopi in soup, and 30 kinds of hot canned coffee (which all taste moreorless the same) in ubiquitous vending machines. 

Japan is a long country with 80% mountains – covering several climates, from frosty Hokkaido in the north, to tropical Kyushu giving adventurous folks much opportunity to head to the outer provinces for exploration of the heady scenery of this varied archipelago. With some planning, politeness and persistence, combined with a little zen, you can find big adventures.

Indeed, it is easy to get lost in the big cities of Tokyo and Osaka – crowded with skyscrapers and twisted alleys, piled high with screaming neon clubs pumping techno, reggae or karaoke and shops piled with futuristic technological gadgets that won’t make it to North America for another decade – but, far away from the expensive hotels and talking toilets of the huge Pacific metropolis, you may find yourself soaking in alpine hot springs on a starry night, drinking sake with strangers crammed into a mountain hut after a backcountry dinner of rice, seaweed, miso and green tea.

Continue reading Primer: Travelling Japan / places to go, getting around, accomms, culture, etiquette and geography

Drunken Japanese Petenque Storytime – Choogle on #64

Wandering the streets of Austin with old pal Yaki Niku, Uncle Weed recounts a strange international steel ball tossing tournament in a remote Japanese village known for radioactive hot springs.

The multi-national, dignitaries, dubbed the Genki Monkeys, represented eagerly through much drunkeness at the hands of mayor and his cohorts, followed by Born to be Wild karaoke and outdoor hot spring soaking riverside. Followed by an early morning breakfast of raw eggs, a hungover beat down by of old folks with tape measures, and a long afternoon of waiting around in the valley in discomfort due to a queasy formal dinner and an endless tour of world liquors.

Stumble along for Drunken Japanese Petenque Storytime – Choogle on #64 (.mp3, 22:21, 18MB)

Drunken Japanese Petenque Storytime

Note: the mentioned Mad Dog (the other Genki Monkey) is featured in:

Mission to the Homestead and Himalayas – Choogle on #30

Halloween Chaos in The Castro – Choogle on #29

More Podcast Goodness:

Postcards from Gravelly Beach – Literature Podcast – FeediTunesBlog

Out n’ About with Uncle Weed– Travelin’ man vidcast – ShowFeediTunes

Ephemeral Feasthouse – Miscellanea & Notes – BlogFeedPodcast