The One about How I Paid Off My College Loans

 This morning, I was reading Eric Levitz article on “We Must Cancel Everyone’s Debt, for the Economy’s Sake”, especially reading the comments on universities should be “free” (for engineering, science and mathematically-founded degrees). For me, my college loans were sold while I was in college and so it was split into three loan payments with three different banks. I knew through the pre-loan meeting before you start college that […]

The One about the Tomb of Kondo Isami (Commander of the Shinsengumi) in Kita ward

Located across the street from Itabashi Station in Kita ward is a memorial for Isami Kondo, the Japanese swordsman who is known as the commander of the Shinsengumi (a special police force organized by the military government – Bakufu). The Shinensumi was established by the Tokugawa regume but in 1867, when Tokugawa. Yoshinobu withdrew from Kyoto and a new emperor was named as the head of a new government, this […]

The One about Ichiran and their awesome ramen

It was 1960 when a ramen stall known as Futaba Ramen was opened in Fukuoka but when the first generation shopkeepers, a married couple were going to closed down, many of their loyal customers begged for them to continue their business. Many wanted to make sure that the taste of ramen from Futaba Ramen would continue with a new successor and that person would become the president of Ichiran Ramen […]

The One about Ikebukuro Suitengu

When I am heading out to Ichiran Ramen, often I pass by an area of Ikebukuro that I usually don’t visit. There is a shrine in the location known as Ikebukuro Suitengu and for those who enjoy exploring small shrines, this one is a little interesting. Interesting that because where it’s located, chances of finding homeless, people smoking, cats gathering and litter are probably to be expected.  It’s always a […]

Q&A: The One about Answering Your Questions Part II

Hi everyone! I get asked a lot of questions in regards to traveling, so once in awhile, I’ll feature a Q&A on the site! So, let’s begin…   If I need to make a phone call, are there pay phones around Japan that I can use? Yes, pay phones still exist.  While I haven’t used a green pay phone in Japan since 1999, they are around at major train stations.  […]

The One about How I Became Interested in Japanese Culture

I’m often asked of how I became interested in Japanese culture. I know a lot of people get into it because of their interested in Japanese animation, the music, cinema and often pop culture-related. I think it would be a shock to some if I say that it was actually from unfortunate circumstances. But before I explain of how, let me give you a background of my life growing up […]

The One about Pomme no Ki

I’m often asked if there is a restaurant that I always visit when I’m in Japan.  There are a few, but there is one that I keep coming back for their excellent omurice and that’s Pomme no Ki. For those not familiar with omurice, this is yoshoku (western-influenced style of Japanese cuisine) which is an omelet with fried rice inside. And on top of the omurice is typically ketchup, but […]