Monday, October 5, 2009

Autumn time in Japan

Rice harvesting in Senmaida

I don't think there any nation who celebrate their seasons more than the Japanese. It's almost inconceivable that the progress of the cherry blossom would be covered on national news as well as countrywide cherry blosson viewing events , but believe it because it does happen.

Autumn is here and boy don't you know it. In England, you'd hardly notice when summer ends and autumn begins, I'd blame it on the amount of rain.. The first sign of autumn in Japan, along with the massive drop in temperature, was a teacher coming into school with a bag of boiled chestnuts. You then cut them, scoop out the inside and eat. Delicious! Then another teacher brought in a sackful of homegrown get the picture, lots of seasonal homegrown food and the supermarkets really go to town with autumn produce signs everywhere.
Anyone who has experienced Autumn in Japan will have noticed one or several of the following:

i) The profuse summer sweating turns into a mild sweating and then finally it's over!

ii) All of the oranges disappear and are replaced with abundant amounts of autumnal fruit including fresh figs, persimmons, dragonfruit and akebi. See my Japanese fruit post.

iii) Teachers bring in their autumn produce for you to try out

iv) Suddenly the plain bowls of rice become chesnut rice

v) Rice harvesting everywhere and anywhere where theres space to grow it

vi) Rice harvest dust gets to all hayfever sufferers.

vii) You start wondering where your hottie is (hot water bottle)

viii) You get invited to an apple/pear picking trip

I have personally loved the drop in temperature. It's been like an English summer here for the past few weeks, and I can actually breathe again, perfect!

Autumn leaf viewing is also a favourite Japanese past time along with autumn apple, pear and grape picking (well....technically it's tasting) Last week I went along to an apple picking trip in which we crammed so much in it as worth writing another post. I have yet to go on a leaf viewing excursion, I'll keep my eye out though!

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