What is Tokyo Exactly?

Twenty-three wards of Tokyo

When people used to ask me where I lived it was really quite easy to just say “Oh I live in Tsukuba.” If I got the “Where is that?” follow-up question, I could just easily say “It’s in Ibaraki, a prefecture in eastern Japan.” Generally, that is the end of the conversation. Now when people ask me where I live, I can say Tokyo, but after trying to remember my address, I realize there is a lot more to Tokyo than meets the eye. When you hear Tokyo, what do you think? A city in Japan, right? Continue Reading …

Japanese Geography: Japan’s Eight Regions

JapanRegionsPic

(updating...) I still consider myself to be quite the novice as far as my Japanese knowledge is concerned. There is so much of the language that I just haven't learned yet, so much about the history that I don't know, and so much about Japan's Geography that I'm simply unfamiliar with. But that's what makes Japan so intriguing for me. It's an adventure each and every day. Geography in particular has always been one of my weaknesses (history too) even in the United States, because I just Continue Reading …

Japanese Geography: Japan’s Forty-Seven Prefectures

JapanPrefectQuestion

(updating...) When I teach English classes, I often ask my students what they did over the weekend. Usually I get the standard, "Nothing special." response and that's the end of it. Yesterday, I had a very small class (only two students) and I tried asking the very same question; it's a great way to get some of the Japanese kids used to English small talk. It turned out that, coincidentally, both students have grandparents that live in Miyagi, and they both visited their grandparents over Continue Reading …