Tuesday, February 28, 2006


In his blog this morning, Shigeki wrote about the plum trees starting to bloom in Tokyo. It reminded me of something my friends and I used to do in Japan. Several times a year, we would hop on a train to Dazaifu (near the city of Fukuoka) to eat umegaemochi (plum-flavored sweet bean-filled rice cakes). Every trip was fantastic, but the best time was in mid-to-late February when the plum trees were blooming.

We would wake up early in the morning and ride our bikes to Futajima Station (It's the fourth station from the left on the bottom row in the picture).

The train was a local and stopped at every station. We didn't care, because we would pack our bags with dried squid and chocolate and wasabi peas and cookies and, best of all, self-warming cans of sake [just press the button and -voila!- hot sake in a few minutes]. We would eat and drink and laugh and look at the country scenery all the way to Fukuoka/Hakata Station. There we would change trains for a quick trip to Dazaifu.

We would visit a few temples, buy a good luck charm or two, and eat a late lunch. Later in the day we would walk up the hill to a little restaurant and order an umegaemochi set (pictured) - umegaemochi and green tea. YUM.

Then, we would go back to the train station. On the return trip, we always took the express train home.


  1. Okay, so I don't read you for like what... 24 hours or so, and when I come back there are like 9 new posts! Well, that's a little excessive, but still. How do you see your stats? I'm lost! I need some blogger heeeeelp!

  2. Wow, I am familair with none of the stations listed there.

    I hope you didn't put too much sugar in that green tea. :)

    I loooove maccha. But I only have it like once a week or so.