The Weekly Bulletin: Week 9, 2015

It’s finally getting warmer in Tokyo! I’m 99% thrilled and 1% upset because the sneezing, coughing and general spring snotfest has already begun. Ahh, hay fever! Thank goodness for face masks, which do help a little bit. I wrote about how much I like Japanese surgical masks on Texan in Tokyo a while back. It’s not all about keeping pollen and viruses away!

japan face mask

Me for the next few months



  • Spring isn’t all badーthink of all the flowers! Candy Kawaii Lover made a list of some great places to go and things to do this season. Most of them involving flowers, yay!
  • If you ever find yourself in need of a taxi in Tokyo, there’s now an app available in English to help you get one. “Takkun” is available for iPhone, Android and MS Windows phones, and uses a simple 3-step system to call the nearest available taxi to your location hassle-free. I’ve not tried it since I’m too cheap (and stubborn!) to use taxis, but I can see it being a handy tool when you’re not on a main road and you just want to get back to your hotel/where you want to go. Has anyone tried this?
  • Funky party people BRADIO have released their official video for the song “Flyers”, which is the opening theme for new anime Death Parade! If you’re looking for something to groove along to, this may be it!

  • Kagome, a Japanese producer and distributor of tomatoes is in the lead for weirdest “campaign/invention/joke/not even sure what’s going on” for 2015 with its wearable tomato-feeding robot. Don’t ask, just watch:

Though the company obviously knows how cheesy this is, I’m amazed at the lengths they went to make this! The machine is real, and designed by famous art unit-meets-inventors Maywa Denki.

Our Stuff

  • YJ relearned the word “sunny side up” in his English studies the other day, and was quite sure I had never taught him that “weird word”, nor “easy over”, an equally mystifying term. Sunny side up in Japanese is 目玉焼き (medamayaki – literally “fried eyeball” ーhow’s that for a visual!)
sunny side up

Secondhand clothing store called Sunny Side Up in Shimokitazawa. YJ was too busy poking Ralph’s nose to notice his new vocab had popped up!

  • Speaking of eggs, we attended a local community event where people gather to cook and eat together. It was the second time for me, the first for YJ and a couple of friends I invited. The theme was scotch eggsーsomething I’ve only ever had store-bought. These homemade ones were really good though!


  •  I have another NHK World Tokyo Eye show coming up on March 11th! You can watch it online, or download the NHK World Live app. The show is on four times on the day it airsーbut be sure to check your timezone so you don’t miss it! ^^ This upcoming episode will be about different community projectsーbringing people closer together in a big (and sometimes quite lonely!) city like Tokyo. ^^


Do you suffer from hay fever? If you do, do you take medication or know any home remedies that work?




11 responses to “The Weekly Bulletin: Week 9, 2015”

  1. May I ask if the eggs are supposed to be cooked that way? I don’t know, but if you put that egg in Malaysia, it would be regarded as a failure. To us, the egg yolk should either be fully cooked or fully runny. A half runny half cooked yolk would be frowned upon here. :/
    CL (RealGunners) recently posted…Cafe de Bangkok @ Fort Collins

    • Ri says:

      That’s a good question, and I’m afraid I have no answer to it! Most eggs are not fully hardboiled here because they like it runny (unless you’re making a potato salad or something), but since this scotch egg had to be deepfried (because of the meat around it) maybe they were worried it would get too hard in the process. No one really said anything about it… but it tasted good! 😀

  2. Marta says:

    I want to see you on tv!!! Please keep me posted about the airing time haha. China is just one hour behind Japan 😉
    Marta recently posted…Travelling during Chinese New Year

  3. Nina says:

    That sucks about the pollen and stuff affecting you D: I don’t have that problem luckily x__x the scotch eggs look good! I’ve never heard of them before 😮
    Nina recently posted…Things I Missed About California When I Was in Japan.

    • Ri says:

      Yeah, I was fine in Japan for the first 3-4 years… but THEN!!! Well, then I wasn’t anymore, haha! I hope you never get itーit’s one of those things that’s no life threatening but is a real pain to deal with.
      They’re from the UK originally I think, pretty good! 😀

  4. Timo says:

    Now I am wondering about the face mask/ surgical mask, are those the special ones which actually help or just the basic ones for the placebo effect? All I know is that the surgical standard masks keep about 80% or so in but don’t help against anything coming towards you (too much medical training during military I think).

    When I worked at the Helsinki Vantaa Airport you could always pinpoint the Japanese tourists as nearly all of them had the masks and some even got angry when asked to remove the mask at the passport control! 😮
    Timo recently posted…Nathan’s 1st Birthday

    • Ri says:

      They sell both typesーif I don’t have a cold or something I’ll use the loose one just to cover my face a little. Even if it only creates a thin layer to stop things going in… For me, on a packed train it at least *feels* better when the person I’m squished against is coughing in my face. T-T Maybe it makes no real difference. XD

      Ahhh yes!! I noticed that too! Last time I flew with YJ via Frankfurt the passport control guys got sooooo angry when people didn’t remove their masksーor understand what they wanted. And then they got angry at the tour leader because he/she didn’t explain to them properly…
      (I could see all this since I went through passport control in 15 secondsーYJ was stuck in the “super foreign” line behind the masked people, poor thing.) XD

  5. I have never suffer from hay fever but I had a student who was allergic to dust. Some days I would just place I whole pack of tissue on his desk and he would use the entire box in 1 1/2 hours.

    What is Tokyo Eye? Like a TV show, a documentary? Are you in it?

    It is great that YJ is learning some cool English terms. My husband recently read the book ‘Smart Couple Finish Rich’ and I am reading it now. I laugh when I am reading it because he has a system. He underlines the sentences we wants me to take note of and he boxes the words he doesn’t know and has to look up! And he does the same when reading the printed draft of my book.
    Constance – Foreign Sanctuary recently posted…Flowers, Taiwanese Puppets, & So Much More – [Photographing 2015] The Fifth Week

    • Ri says:

      I feel for your student! It’s like being completely physically incapacitated even though it’s “just” sneezing and a runny nose. T-T I bought some strong eye drops today, so that should help some…

      Tokyo Eye is a weekly show on NHK World (so it’s all in English!) about different events, phenomena etc in the capital. And yes, I’m in this upcoming one! (Erm, I should have mentioned that, ha! Am still planning on posting a list of the shows that I’ve already participated in but… it’s much easier thinking only my parents and people I know are watching, haha!)

      Oh, your husband and I have a similar system! I highlight interesting bits, underline in red what I don’t know and sometimes I do a blue squiggle for random “huh, I see” moments. XD

      Must be exciting to have him read your printed draftーis it still nerve wracking, or does it not feel so scary because it’s your husband and you’re close? ^^

      • I will keep an eye out for the post!! It is so cool that you get to partake in different things such as this. I bet it is a good learning experience. During my first few years in Taiwan, I acted in a lot of English learning videos [performed the dialogues, etc.] and I was once on the news. I was recognized by strangers and even members of my husband’s family called him to let him know they saw it. So, I know what you mean.

        The book isn’t entirely finished but I will be writing my last pages very soon. I usually make a hard copy of it just in case and it is easier to read as well. At first, it was a little nerve wreaking to have my husband read it but now he usually reads what I have written each day. I value his opinion about the flow of the book and if he asks questions, then I know that more details need to be added.
        Constance – Foreign Sanctuary recently posted…Flowers, Taiwanese Puppets, & So Much More – [Photographing 2015] The Fifth Week

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