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Monkeys find rare sanctuary in Japan hot spring

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Feb 26Dressed to kill: Japan's ninja festival
To arrive in Iga-Ueno on the first Sunday in April is to feel like a stranger in ninjatown. This small city in the mountains, about two hours by train from Osaka, is supposedly the ancestral home of those fearsome feudal super-sneaks and master killers, whose name and reputation have spread across the world through movies, comic books and video games. Here in Japan, ninjas are now something of a national myth, a slightly cartoonish composite of old folk tales and modern pop culture. This morning in Iga Ueno, however, it would be discourteous to dispute their existence. It's the opening day of the annual ninja festival, and travel on public transport is free to anyone in costume. (guardian.co.uk)

Feb 26New teacher no sooner moves in than makes a move on
"I commute from home to an occupational training school close by. The new bookkeeping teacher is just the kind of hunk that I like. Anyway, completely by coincidence, he wound up moving into the apartment building that my parents operate." Thus begins another titillating account of lurid female fantasy, from the December issue of women's soft porn mag Ai no Taiken Special Deluxe, as appearing in Shukan Bunshun (Mar. 3). "One day I decided to drop by his place, which I could see from mine, just to say hello," she writes. "I had just turned 20, and being of the legal age to purchase alcohol, gave him a six-pack as a house-warming present." (Tokyo Reporter)
Feb 26Parents supportive but girl is the winner
How does one force an elementary school child to study or to master a foreign language at such a young age? Ask Wakaba Yoshida, 40, and the answer is quite simple: Never try to discipline a child to begin with. Yoshida's daughter, Ayumi, 11, beat out 1,600 competitors to be crowned winner of a national English speech contest held in Tokyo earlier this month. "It isn't about making her work as hard as she can," Yoshida said of her approach in developing her daughter's champion skills. "It's more about supporting her when necessary and not pushing too hard." (Japan Times)
Feb 26Committed to 'making it work' as foreign wife
Forty-five years spent living in the Kobe area as the American wife of a Japanese businessman must change a person. Yet Winnie Inui, 68, still welcomes visitors to her suburban home in Ashiya, Hyodo Prefecture, with a blanket of felicitous concern ("Enough tea, dear?") and a flair for storytelling that remains true to her Boston Irish roots. A poet and a founder of the Kansai branch of the Association of Foreign Wives of Japanese, she recently spoke about her nearly half-century in Japan. Winnie Flanagan was working at a bank in Boston during the day and studying French at night when she first met Tsuneo Inui, then a student at Harvard Business School, in 1964. (Japan Times)
Feb 26A troubling trend on roads
Although the annual traffic fatality rate has dropped from a peak of 16,765 in 1970 to 4,863 in 2010, the number of fatalities involving people aged 65 and over has been rising. In 2010, 2,450 people in this age category were killed in traffic accidents, accounting for 50.4 percent of all traffic accident deaths that year. Since records began being kept in 1966, the fatality percentage for elderly drivers ranged between 30 percent and 40 percent through 2002, then exceeded 40 percent in 2003. 2010 marked the first year in which the figure surpassed 50 percent. (Japan Times)
Feb 25Remains of missing Kanazawa housewife found buried on beach
The remains of missing Kanazawa housewife Haruna Fukuda, 27, were discovered buried in the sand at a beach in Onebu, Ishikawa Prefecture, on Thursday. Around 50 police officers had been searching beaches for her belongings since Feb 17. Fukuda had been missing since she left home in her car on Feb 6 after telling her parents that she was going to collect some money that was owed to her by a male acquaintance. After she failed to return home, she was reported missing. On Feb 21, it was reported that Ishikawa prefectural police had confiscated the car of a 35-year-old freelance cameraman, who was commissioned to work for public broadcaster NHK, on suspicion that he had been involved in the woman's disappearance. (Japan Today )
Feb 25Monkeys find rare sanctuary in Japan hot spring
In an outdoor natural hot spring, or onsen, in snow-covered Nagano, Japan, people get a rare up-close view of snow monkeys in their natural habitat. The monkeys mostly ignore the tourists armed with their cameras and the scientists who've traveled hours to be within centimeters of the crimson-faced creatures. For 46 years, the Jigokudani Monkey Park has been a sanctuary for these snow monkeys. The monkeys lounge, appearing to almost nod off in the steaming hot bath, almost all of them with hot water up to their shoulders. Jigokudani Monkey Park's beginnings were borne out of man's frustrations with the snow monkeys, whom Nagano residents considered pests. (CNN)
Feb 25Some 71 percent of Japanese girls feel overweight: survey
Nearly three-quarters of Japanese female high-school students see themselves as overweight, despite being thinner on average than their peers in the United States, China and South Korea, a survey showed. The survey by the Japan Youth Research Institute also showed that Japanese high-school students of both sexes rank the lowest in terms of self esteem among the four countries. The Tokyo-based institute polled more than 7,000 students from Japanese, U.S., Chinese and South Korean high schools on dietary habits, exercise and other factors to gauge their physical and mental health. (Reuters)
Feb 25Osbourne lied about mum's death to get out of Japan tour
Sharon Osbourne once had to fake her mother-in-law's death to excuse her husband OZZY from a tour of Japan after the rocker became too drunk to board his flight. The Black Sabbath star spent years battling drug and alcohol addiction and was once so inebriated, his manager wife Sharon had to lie to Japanese concert promoters, so they could axe his shows. (contactmusic.com)
Feb 25Digging up Japan's past: Deafening silence
Proof of mass murder could lie in a genteel enclave of west-central Tokyo. It took over four years for the government to remove an inhabited block of flats so that the search for the truth might start. But on February 21st two diggers began scooping up and gently winnowing the ground in search of human remains. Barely a word about it has appeared in the national press. Japanese journalists do not usually shy away from a murder mystery. But this one is in a different league. The site might be a link to one of the most atrocious sets of crimes Japan committed during the second world war. It involved medics in Unit 731, a covert body in the Japanese imperial army charged with developing techniques of chemical and biological warfare. The medics carried out experiments on humans, including vivisection without anaesthetic. Some later rose to the top of Japan's post-war medical establishment, abetted by occupying American forces. (The Economist)
Feb 25Christchurch earthquake: Soccer-lover loses leg but survives
"I have lost a leg. They had to cut it off to save me." Those were the first words Japanese student Kento Okuda said to his mother over the phone after being rescued from the rubble of the Canterbury Television building on Wednesday morning. Despite the shocking news, Mr Okuda's mother considers herself really lucky, the Asahi Shimbun newspaper reported. "I am looking forward to receiving him when he comes home, but I cannot celebrate because only my son has been rescued," said the mother, who was not named in the report. (New Zealand Herald)
Feb 25Student recalls terror of quake / 19-year-old pleaded with rescue workers not to amputate her leg
"The floor gave way and I started to fall. Then I saw the ceiling rushing toward me," recounted a Japanese student who was rescued from a building that collapsed in the powerful earthquake that struck Christchurch on Tuesday. Norika Masutani, 19, from the Toyama College of Foreign Languages, was rescued from the building that housed King's Education language school. "Things around me started to rattle, and then I felt a big jolt," Masutani said, describing how after she fell, she found herself covered in dust. After that, she said, everything went dark and she started having trouble breathing. She could feel her right leg was trapped in the rubble. Masutani, who was rescued after spending about nine hours under the rubble, expressed worry about her friends who were in the same building. (Yomiuri)
Feb 24Up to 120 trapped in N.Z. building where Japanese were studying
As many as 120 people remain trapped in a building in earthquake-devastated Christchurch on Thursday where more than a dozen Japanese students were studying when a 6.3-magnitude earthquake hit the city on New Zealand's south island Tuesday. An urban search and rescue team from Japan has already joined other rescue workers to dig through debris at the CanterburyTV building that also housed the King's Education Ltd. language school where many Japanese and other international students were studying. Overnight Wednesday, four bodies were pulled from the rubble of the regional television building. (AP )
Feb 24Japan rescuers dig through NZealand school rubble
Japanese rescue workers sifted Thursday through the debris of a quake-hit building that housed a language school which scores of students from Japan and across Asia attended. Using cameras, sniffer dogs and pausing silently at times to listen for signs of life, the orange-clad specialists pushed on with their grim task, despite local warnings that they were now unlikely to find survivors. The recovery of 23 bodies on Thursday brought the toll from the six-storey building alone to 47, local police said -- but they also warned that up to 120 may have been inside when it was toppled by Tuesday's quake. (mysinchew.com )
Feb 24618 children victims of child porn in Japan in 2010
The number of children falling victim to child pornography producers rose of 52.6 per cent in 2010 to 618, the highest figure since the Japanese National Police Agency started compiling data, the agency said Thursday. The victims included 93 primary school pupils and 33 preschoolers, the agency said. Some 1,342 cases of production and selling of pornographic material involving children under 18 were sent to the public prosecutors, up 43.5 per cent from 2009. (monstersandcritics.com)
Feb 24No. of fake marriage cases involving foreigners surges in 2010
The number of fake marriage cases involving foreigners exposed by police across Japan in 2010 surged to 153, up 14.2 percent from the previous year, a National Police Agency survey showed Thursday. The police took action -- such as questioning, arresting and sending papers to prosecutors -- against 471 people involved in such cases, up 25.6 percent, it said. Police will keep a closer eye on sham marriage cases, as they are creating infrastructure for a host of other crimes, it said. (AP)
Feb 24Girls' Generation step into Japanese ad market
Korean pop group Girls' Generation will appear in a Japanese TV commercial for the first time since their debut there. Their management agency SM Entertainment said Tuesday that they have been selected to advertise the Japanese cough drop "e-ma Nodoame," which is marking the 10th anniversary of its launch this year. The commercial to be aired nationwide in Japan starting Saturday will feature the girl band's second single "Gee," which topped Japan's Oricon daily singles chart and took second place on the Oricon weekly singles chart. (chosun.com )
Feb 24Philippine remains 'sold as Japan war dead'
Grave robbers have dug up the remains of Philippine tribesmen and passed them off as the bodies of Japanese soldiers for return to Japan, tribal leaders said Wednesday. The skeletons of hundreds of Mangyan and Ifugao tribesmen have been shipped to Japan since 2008 after being unearthed by looters paid by a Japanese group called Kuentai that purports to find remains of the country's World War II dead, they claimed. Aniw Lubag, a Mangyan leader, told a news conference his tribe briefly detained three people in 2008 as they stole bones from a burial cave on the central island of Mindoro. (AFP)
Feb 24Three held over illegal cell phones
Police arrested an unemployed man from Tokyo and two mobile phone agents Tuesday on suspicion of failing to verify the identities of cell phone buyers, as required by law. The handsets are believed to have been used to perpetrate frauds. Investigative sources said the man, Shinichi Yumimoto, 32, has told the Metropolitan Police Department that he obtained around 900 handsets under other people's names. (Japan Times )
Feb 24Men spending more time at home after work amid falling incomes: survey
Japanese men in their 30s are spending more time at home after work than five years ago, possibly due to falling incomes, a research institute said Wednesday. A survey conducted last October showed that men in their 30s spent an average of 11 hours and 58 minutes at home on weekdays, up 35 minutes from 2005, while the proportion of men in their 20s and 30s doing housework on weekdays was up around 10 percentage points each to 32 percent and 40 percent, respectively, the NHK Broadcasting Culture Research Institute said. (AP)
Feb 23Japan, S. Korea pray for N. Zealand quake students
Relatives in Japan and South Korea feared the worst Wednesday for 25 students missing in New Zealand after an earthquake turned the Christchurch language school they attended to rubble. New Zealand police said a day after the powerful quake that they had abandoned hope of finding more survivors in the collapsed six-storey building that housed an English language school, the King's Education College. A Japanese language school and a study tour agency each reported that 10 students who attended the college were missing, while other agencies listed three more Japanese as unaccounted for. (AFP)
Feb 23Kabuki actor Ebizo, celebrity wife Kobayashi expecting baby
Wife of Kabuki star Ichikawa Ebizo and popular TV personality, Mao Kobayashi, is pregnant with their first child, Ebizo's office said Wednesday. The baby is due in July. Ebizo, 33, and Kobayashi, 28, married in March 2010. The actor is currently refraining from performances due to a scandal over his involvement in a bar brawl last November. (AP)
Feb 23Right-wing groups commemorate assassination of politician Inejiro Asanuma 50 years later (Video)
By any measure, the assassination of socialist politician Inejiro Asanuma in Tokyo in 1960 was a shocking event - and five decades later the impact of the incident continues to reverberate in unpredictable ways. During a political debate at Tokyo's Hibiya Public Hall in October, a 17-year-old rightist, Otoya Yamaguchi, broke free from the assembled crowd, rushed the stage, and stabbed Asanuma with a small sword two times before being apprehended. He committed suicide three weeks later while being incarcerated in a detention cell. Very rarely, if ever, are the perpetrators of political assassinations later celebrated in a public forum. Yet on two occasions at the end of last year that was the case for Yamaguchi. (Tokyo Reporter)
Feb 23Crown prince, turning 51, respects emperor's thoughts on duties
Prior to his 51st birthday on Wednesday, Crown Prince Naruhito indicated at a recent press conference that whether to lighten the burden of official duties on his 77-year-old father, who has arteriosclerosis, should be determined by emperor himself. As Emperor Akihito is under medication after being diagnosed with arteriosclerosis in his cardiac blood vessels earlier this month, the crown prince said it is important to consider "not placing excessive burdens" on his parents. Asked about Crown Princess Masako, who has been receiving treatment for a stress-related illness, the crown prince said she "is making as much effort as possible as a mother to let Aiko go to school the way she did before." (AP )
Feb 23State refuses court-proposed settlement in Osaka asbestos suits
The government refused a proposal by the Osaka High Court on Tuesday for a settlement in damages suits filed by people who developed asbestos-induced illnesses including cancer in Osaka Prefecture. Presiding Judge Jun Miura, who called on the government last month to decide whether to accept the proposed settlement by Tuesday, indicated the procedures to hand down a ruling will resume as a result of the refusal. (AP)
Feb 23Probe of '95 shooting of top cop faulty
Tokyo police have issued a report admitting they failed to resolve the 1995 shooting of the National Police Agency chief due to a shoddy early investigation and slow response to substantiating allegations. The report was released Friday, nearly a year after the expiration of the statute of limitations for the shooting that left then NPA chief Takaji Kunimatsu seriously wounded and was blamed by police on Aum Shinrikyo. (Japan Times)
Feb 23Shawna Olson visits Japanese natto factory
One of the stops we made in Japan was to a Natto factory. Bob Sinner, one of the owners of SB&B Foods, says Natto is a popular food with the older Japanese population. Natto is full of vitamins and minerals like Vitamin B and K. It helps lower blood pressure, strengthens arteries especially in the brain and the heart, and it helps prevent blood clots. Natto comes from the Natto bean. In fact, 60% of the natto consumed in Japan comes from our region. The rest comes from Canada and parts of Japan. The natto bean is basically a different variety of soybean. The bean is a little smaller. At the factory, the bean undergoes a fermentation process. They says it takes four days to make natto. (kfgo.com)
Feb 22Panda-monium in Japan after pair arrives from China
Panda fever showed few signs of dying down in Japan on Tuesday after the arrival in Tokyo of the country's latest pair of giant pandas from China. Xiannu and Bili, both five years old, reached the capital's Ueno Zoological Park late at night after a journey of nearly 4,000 km from China's Sichuan province and were greeted by nearly 200 journalists. The last panda at Ueno, Ling Ling, died in 2008, although there are pandas at other zoos in Japan. Morning news programs reported at length on the arrival of the pair, featuring shots of their special plane in white and black livery. Airport staff held up a banner saying: "Welcome to Japan, dear pandas." (Reuters )
Feb 22Top court rules heir's children cannot inherit all assets per stirpes
The Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that children of a designated heir are not automatically entitled to inherit the assets of the heir's parent in cases where the heir dies before the parent, setting a fresh precedent over the matter. The top court's five-justice third petty bench upheld a high court ruling two years ago, acting on a suit filed by the sister of a man whose mother designated him as the heir of all her assets. Lower court findings show that the father of the plaintiff died in 1992 leaving assets of five tracts of land and two buildings in Kanazawa, capital of Ishikawa Prefecture. (AP)
Feb 22Sumo wrestlers prefer public phones for canceling Osaka adult entertainment arrangements
With the cancellation of the Osaka sumo tournament in March, the city's nightlife quarters will not be receiving patronage from its burly regulars, who, reports weekly tabloid Shukan Jitsuwa (Mar. 3), are not using their mobile phones when canceling entertainment bookings. Every year, sumo wrestlers (rikishi), their supporters (tanimachi), and coaches (oyakata) frequent one particular lounge in the Kita Shinchi district. "Since we do not need to prepare a big sofa this year, it is sad," says an employee. "While it is disturbing to see drunk sekitori grapplers" - those ranked in one of the top two professional divisions - "we are used to hosting them every year. Sumo wrestlers drink a lot given their huge body mass. Considering that nowadays we have been losing customers, this will have a big impact on sales." (Tokyo Reporter)
Feb 22All grown up! Selena Gomez wows Japanese fans in a stylish mini dress
She may have become famous for her teen roles in several Disney TV series, but Selena Gomez looked every inch the young woman in Japan today. The 18-year old star wowed fans in a copper coloured satin mini dress and black high heels as she attended a press photocall for her TV show The Wizards of Waverly Place. She looked confident and assured as she spoke to fans at the event in Tokyo. The star, who is rumoured to be dating teen star Justin Bieber, also has a burgeoning singing career. (Daily Mail )
Feb 22Monster in Blackman case still an enigma
Lucie Blackman, 21, arrived in Japan in early May 2000 and vanished two months later. Her dismembered and badly decomposed body was discovered in February 2001. In December 2008 the Tokyo High Court found Joji Obara guilty of the abduction, drugging, attempted rape and dismemberment of Blackman, and of illegally disposing of her body. In addition, he was convicted of the rape of eight other women and the rape and killing of Carita Ridgway, an Australian. (Japan Times)
Feb 22Experts mull Miyagi GPS plan / Would high-tech surveillance of sex offenders help or hurt?
Should Japan become a society that closely monitors convicted sex offenders around the clock? Widespread controversy over this question has been sparked by the Miyagi prefectural government's consideration of a possible ordinance requiring anyone with such a criminal record to carry a Global Positioning System (GPS) device while in the prefecture. Meanwhile, the national government remains negative toward the idea, which critics say borders on Orwellian surveillance. It is even cautious about directly contacting past offenders who have been released from prison. (Yomiuri)
Feb 22S. Korean stars to land at Ibaraki Airport
Ibaraki Airport may have only a handful of flights each day, but it hopes to draw bigger than usual crowds on March 3, when actor Jang Keun Suk and actress Kim Haneul give a press conference there. The two South Korean movie stars will be there to promote their upcoming romantic comedy, "You're My Pet," some scenes of which are set to be shot in Ibaraki Prefecture in May, sources said. Ibaraki Airport, which opened in March last year, is caught up in a nationwide struggle for survival among Japan's many local airports. The prefecture decided to cooperate in the movie production as part of efforts to increase the number of customers using the airport's regular flights to Seoul. (Yomiuri)
Feb 21Japan goes crazy for Chinese pandas
Panda fever gripped Japan on Monday as two of the cuddly creatures headed to the nation from China, with Tokyo zoo eyeing a visitor boom and the government predicting smoother ties with Beijing. Panda flags lined streets near the capital's Ueno Zoo, which is to become the home of the pair of five-year-old giant pandas for the next decade, while television channels ran breathless coverage about the furry VIPs. The pair, a male named Bili and female named Xiannu, left their sanctuary in China's Sichuan province on Monday headed for Shanghai, from where they were to fly to Tokyo on an All Nippon Airlines jet painted white with black spots. (AFP )
Feb 21Court OKs bail for man accused of assaulting Kabuki actor Ebizo
The Tokyo District Court on Monday approved the release of a 27-year-old man, who is on trial on charges of assaulting and injuring Kabuki star Ichikawa Ebizo in November, on bail of 2.5 million yen. Lion Ito, a former member of a motorcycle gang, placed the bail request on Friday, when he pleaded guilty during his first court hearing. His first request on Dec. 28, the day of his indictment, was rejected immediately. (AP )
Feb 21Japan unearths site linked to human experiments
Authorities in Japan have begun excavating the former site of a medical school that may contain the remains of victims of the country's wartime germ and biological warfare programme. The school has links to Unit 731, a branch of the imperial Japanese army that conducted lethal experiments on prisoners as part of efforts to develop weapons of mass destruction. The Japanese government has never officially acknowledged the unit's existence, despite testimony from former members and a growing volume of documentary evidence. (guardian.co.uk )
Feb 21NHK cameraman in missing housewife case deleted email records
Police said Sunday that the NHK cameraman involved in the disappearance of a housewife in Kanazawa, Ishikawa Prefecture, deleted his cell phone email records before the suicide attempt that landed him in hospital last week. The woman left her parents' home on Feb 6, saying she was going out to collect money owed to her by a male acquaintance. When she failed to return, her parents filed a missing persons report on Feb 7. (Japan Today )
Feb 21Fukushima teenager without driving license rams car into stone wall
A middle school student drove a car without a license and crashed it into the stone wall of a house early Monday morning in Fukushima Prefecture, local police said. Three boys and two girls aged 13 and 14, all of them attending the same school, were inside the car and sustained non-life-threatening injuries, according to officials at the Sukagawa police station. (Japan Today )
Feb 21Sapporo statue reused for park
About 500 tons of snow used to make one of the huge statues at the Sapporo Snow Festival earlier this month has been reused to make a snow park in the city where people can sled and ski. The festival, which ended Feb. 13, is famous for its hundreds of snow statues and ice sculptures. About 2.41 million attended it this year. The organizer reused some of the snow from the festival to form ski slopes at Odori Park, the main venue. (Japan Times)
Feb 20Saturated Sapporo sex market sends working women to extremes
A surge in the number of women engaging in low-level, sponsor-based relationships is becoming evident in Japan's suburbs, especially Hokkaido, reports Spa! (Feb. 22). "Women in their 30s and 40s have become more common in their willingness to engage in these activities over the last few years," says a local reporter who covers the industry. The trend is not limited to Sapporo and also includes other cities of Hokkaido, such as Hakodate and Kushiro. Market prices range between 5,000 yen and 8,000 yen per service. (Tokyo Reporter)
Feb 20Avatar wins 'Best Foreign Film' at 34th Japan Academy Awards
The 34th Annual Japan Academy Awards were held tonight at Grand Prince Hotel New Takanawa in Tokyo, Japan. Considered one of the big award shows of the year in Asia, the show was similar to the Academy Awards in the US, but highlighting the films that are popular in Japan. Tonight one worldwide film we all know was honored at the ceremony. Avatar won 'Best Foreign Film' beating out The Hurt Locker, Inception, Toy Story 3 and Invictus. The award, honoring those foreign flicks seen in the country, had to be awarded to a film with a premiere between December 2, 2009 and November 27, 2010, which limited the to 207 foreign films. (examiner.com)
Feb 20Four fires kill seven in 24 hours
A series of fires from late Friday night through Saturday morning killed seven people in Hiroshima, Wakayama and Hyogo prefectures, police said. Four bodies were found after a fire broke out at 10:50 p.m. Friday in the home of Zenichiro Shinkado, 88, his wife, Haruko, 84, and two of their sons in Shobara, Hiroshima Prefecture. The fire destroyed the residence and an adjacent barn, the police said. (Japan Times)
Feb 20Japan's kawaii culture taking hold in Britain
Japan's "kawaii" (cute) pop culture style is making an impact on Britain's youth and influencing the wider society, according to experts. Over the last 10 years, the country's youngsters have started to embrace the whole spectrum of kawaii -- from the extremes of costume play down to the purchasing of accessories adorned with cute anime and manga characters. And kawaii has crept into mainstream art and fashion, even though members of the public may not be actually aware of the fact, according to analysts who recently attended a panel discussion in London on the kawaii craze. (Mainichi)
Feb 20Japanese media divided on ending whaling
Japanese newspapers are divided on whether the nation should continue its whaling program after calling off a mission this season due to harassment by militant environmentalists. The country's media were united in condemning harassment by Sea Shepherd which prompted Tokyo on Friday to halt its 2010-2011 whaling mission a month early, calling the group's actions "outrageous" and "unforgivable". But they differed on whether or how Japan should maintain its whaling program, which it continues using a loophole to a 1986 moratorium on commercial whaling that allows lethal "scientific research" on the sea mammals. (Sydney Morning Herald)
Feb 20Taking a train to the snows
Tumbling down head over heels near the summit of a 2,000-meter mountain is the most fun I've had in ages. On a Monday, the sparsely peopled ski runs at Mitsumata resort in Niigata Prefecture were knee-deep in feather-soft powder snow: perfect conditions for cushioning even the nastiest of falls. An amazingly cheap weekday JR package deal that included a day-return shinkansen trip from Tokyo Station and a one-day ski pass made this trip painful on neither the pocket nor the posterior. The only difficult thing about the experience was getting up at 5:15 a.m. in time for the 7:00 a.m. departure to Echigo-Yuzawa. (Japan Times)

By JS on Mar 3, 2011

tag : Japanese Society



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