Friday, May 29, 2009

Some parties

Its been a while since I posted anything, things have been pretty hectic recently and there hasn't been a lot of things to put up.

We've had a few parties that were fun in the past couple weeks though.

Two weeks ago it was one of the Icelandic student's birthdays so we had a little part just behind our building in the kaikan:
Then last Sunday we planned to have a beach party, but unfortunately it was quite windy and a bit rainy so it didn't work out so well and we had to relocate to a slightly sheltered area near the beach. We had a good time socializing with everyone though:
Then on Wednesday our friends Augustine and Anna from the Philippines had a birthday party for our friend Tai Ching at their apartment. That was a lot of fun, loads of people came:
Augustine has a cool little soccer table:
And he's got one of those Dance-Dance Revolution type games:

Sunday, May 10, 2009


Ena and I went to Karatsu today with some friends. We had a great time. I went there with my parents in March but the place looks different now that its May and all the leaves are out.

First we went to the castle:

There are some great views of the ocean, city and islands from the top:

There is a big wysteria vine that we just missed seeing in full bloom:
After leaving the castle, our friend Judit's car (she gave us a ride) suffered a dead battery. Fortunately we were able to get a boost:
After that we went to a park to have lunch and cake. It was Judit's birthday:

The park was on top of Kagami Mountain, which offered some spectacular views of the sea around Karatsu:

There was an interesting souvenir shop near the park with a bunch of dolls in it:
After that we went to a small town called Keya for dinner at a restaurant:
And we could see the sunset on the coast:

Tuesday, May 5, 2009


Ena and I cycled all the way to Tsuyazaki today, which is the furthest we have travelled by bike so far - almost half way to KitaKyushu!

There was some amazing scenery there that made the trip (and the sore knees) worth it. Our first visit was to a seaside park with some nice views of the ocean and coastline:
A lot of people were fishing there:

Then we went to Fukuma beach, which is a popular spot for windsurfing and is lined with nice little restaurants:
Some of the windsurfers:
We then passed a fishing market and wharf:
We then climbed a nearby mountain that rose out of the sea on a small penninsula. At the top of the mountain was a park with a Japanese Navy monument:

There was also a little old lighthouse perched halfway up the mountain:

There were some great views of Ainoshima island as well:
Ena and I on the beach:

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Dontaku Festival

Yesterday I accompanied some of my classmates downtown to see the Dontaku festival, which is one of Fukuoka's biggest events. About 2 million people attend the festival, which is held over 2 days, and 32,000 people participate in a large parade down the main streets in the Tenjin area.

These are some of my friends on the sidewalk trying to see the parade:

The crowds were pretty thick:
After watching the parade for about an hour or so we headed off to a nearby park where hundreds of yatai (little food stalls) were set up to have lunch:
For dessert I got a chocolate covered banana:
The park is next to Across Fukuoka, one of the city's notable architectural features. Its a theatre building that has a massive terraced garden growing on one side. It looks almost like a natural hill when viewed from that side:
You can walk up to the top of the building through the garden so we decided to go up. It was a lot of stairs but kind of fun. We got some good views of the festival below from the top:


Ena and I went out to karaoke with some of our kaikan friends last night. It was Wang Jin's birthday so we went to celebrate:
Ena and I belted out a few tunes together:
Me with Ren Hua and Don Don, who has a really good voice:
These folks sang quite a few:

Friday, May 1, 2009


Ena and I went to Shingu today, the last town on the Nishitetsu Kaizuka railway line (though we biked instead of taking the train. Our trip into the countryside took us past Tachibana mountain, which we had climbed only a couple of days earlier:
Shingu has a nice long beach that stretches on for a good 10 kilometres or more. A large pine forest runs along the coast as well, we road through it on our way to the beach:

The beach was quite nice, with views of mountains in the background:
We walked along the beach for a while, beachcombing. After about half an hour we noticed a fire on the beach in the distance. I was kind of annoyed and we didn't want to go too close, but for whatever reason I set the zoom on my camera to the maximum and took a picture of it:
After I got home and was looking at the pictures I took, I zoomed in on the figure you can sort of see standing behind the fire. It is a completely naked man. He was too far away for us to actually see him. Further examination of the photo revealed a number of other nude figures in there which weren't visible at first. I'm not sure but we may have almost stumbled across a nudist colony of some sort.