Rangetsu Ryokan

15.09.2014 § Leave a comment

Ryokan means “inn” in Japanese. Usually it’s a tatami place with shoji doors. It’s popular to stay in Ryokan at the hot spring resorts in Japan. My sister and I went to one called Rangetsu. It had a private hot spring opening to a small garden as well as a public one (where we went) which also had an outdoor hot spring pool.

Rangetsu Ryokan Rangetsu RyokanRangetsu Ryokan

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New England Morning

25.10.2013 § Leave a comment

I flew in to New York City by noon on Tuesday for ACT’s annual conference, which lasted til five, then went to a business dinner, and got up early the second morning for more ACT meetings til three when I immediately caught a train to Providence, RI. It was a hectic two days.

The second morning when I got up, it was already dawn, and as I looked out the window, the water and fall scenery drew me in and brought instant serenity to my mind. Seeing the quiet bay and horizontal road dotted with red foliage and a tall chimney, I said to myself, “Ah, this is New England.” A native New Englander might not have recognized why this was so New England, but as an outsider, I could pick up on the subtle, yet distinct differences that made this scenery unique.

New England Fall New England FallNew England Fall

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Bathtubs and Robes

12.07.2012 § Leave a comment

A Cultural Difference

I got into the habit of taking hot baths after experiencing the hot spring bath culture in Japan, and I started to notice the difference between the hotels in Japan and the US. First, the bathtubs in Japan are shorter but deeper so the water covers a person up to her neck. By contrast, the hotel tubs in the US are longer but shallower. If a person wants to warm up her knees and shoulders at the same time it is a bit hard. One has to sit up straight to soak her knees or lie down completely and bend her knees to soak her shoulders in hot water. Atami Hot Springs

Atami Hot Springs

Atami Hot Springs

I also noticed that the hotels in Japan always prepare you with a toothbrush and toothpaste and a pair of disposable slippers.  None of these could be found at the Minneapolis Hilton I checked into when I visited our representative in Minnesota.  « Read the rest of this entry »

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