2022.01.24[Mon] 09:00

Medical Treatment & Health(医療・保健)

【Professional Baseball Day】
Baseball is a popular sport in Japan and February 5th is the day to commemorate it. That's because it was on this day in 1936 that the Nippon Professional Baseball Organization, as it is currently known, was formed and so this day is essentially the birthday for professional baseball in Japan. At that time, only 7 teams belonged to the organization. The very first contracted player was Osamu Mihara who had contracted with the Tokyo Giants at that time. The starting salary? It was 177 yen. That might not sound like much but at the time, the starting salary for college graduates was about 64 yen, so it was actually a pretty good salary for the time. Here in Fukuoka, our local team is the Fukuoka Softbank Hawks. Last year, they placed 4th in the league but this year there is a new coach. I'm sure he'll do his best to bring the team back to their former glory. It seems like training starts at the beginning of February and the game season will start in late March, so be sure to cheer on and support Fukuoka's very own Softbank Hawks!

 

 

【Life-style Related Disease Prevention Month】

February is Life-style related disease prevention month.

These are diseases that develop due to, as you may have guessed, our life-style. Life-style related diseases include diabetes, hypertension and heart attacks and are caused by a lack of regular exercise and by nutritionally imbalanced diets. Smoking, excessive drinking and stress can also cause life-style related diseases.

 

To maintain a healthy life-style, balanced and appropriately portioned meals, three times a day at regular times, is key.  Constantly eating nutritionally unbalanced foods, like instant meals or greasy foods, can cause obesity and diabetes. They also say that chewing your food properly is important in a healthy diet as it will reduce the burden on your digestive system and strengthen the muscles around the mouth. Taking your time to eat, spending at least 20 minutes enjoying your meal is suggested.

 

Regular exercise is also important as the loss of muscle mass due to a lack of exercise will affect your basal metabolic rate, which is the number of calories you burn as your body performs basic life-sustaining functions. If this rate decreases, it's more likely you'll gain weight. It also increases your risk of getting diseases such as diabetes. So make time to exercise to maintain your muscle strength and mass. Even if you don't have much time, aim to add on an additional 10 minutes of walking to your day. It will go a long way toward your health.

Sleep is also essential to your health. It plays an important role in our health as it allows us to get rid of mental and physical fatigue and boosts our immunity. And of course, immunity is what helps keep us from getting sick. But to maintain our immunity, it's important that we are getting enough sleep and that our sleep is good quality sleep. The best way to do this is to not use your smartphone before going to bed. You should also avoid watching TV or drinking caffeinated or alcoholic beverages before bed. They will all affect the quality of your sleep. Instead, find another way to relax, perhaps by taking a bath before bed, reading  book or spending some time meditating. It's important to live a stress-free life. Perhaps this is a chance to take a look at your own daily life-style.

2022.01.17[Mon] 09:00

Medical Treatment & Health(医療・保健) , Events & Entertainment(イベント・娯楽)

【Daikon radish】

Daikon-It's a vegetable that I think everyone has seen and probably eaten here in Japan, and did you know that from December to February, you'll find daikon radishes are at their most delicious. From top to bottom, even their leaves, they are full of nutrients and whether cooked or raw they are very, very good. They are grown all across Japan but it seems here in Fukuoka City they are grown locally in Hara in Sawara-ku, and Kanatake and Kitazaki in Nishi-ku.

When choosing your daikon, first take a look at the root, or main part. It should be heavy, white and feel firm to the touch. If there are still leaves attached, they should be a bright green and not wilting, but if the leaves have already been cut off, the cut area should still look fresh and not all dried out. If you do buy a daikon with its leaves still attached, cut them off when you get home and store them separately. Wrap the daikon up tightly and in the winter, keep it in a cool dark place. In other seasons, it needs to be kept in the vegetable drawer. As for the leaves, blanch them, and split them up into smaller amounts to keep in the freezer as accents for other dishes.

The root of the daikon is full of vitamin C and the digestive enzyme amylase. Grated daikon is great for helping with digestion, in fact! The leaves are full of carotene, calcium and digestive fiber. They're an easy addition to miso soup or stir-fries. I bought a daikon cookbook last year and my favorite recipe from it is mabo daikon. It's a fairly easy dish to make and tastes great. Just search for “mabo daikon” online. As for the leaves, I use them to make “greens and ham”. In the South of the US and many places in Detroit from when I was growing up, collard greens is a soul-food kind of dish and while collard greens are a specific vegetable, you can make similar dishes with the leaves of kabu, or beets in English, and daikon as well. Just look the recipe up, I recommend some corn bread from City Bakery and maybe a little fried chicken with it too.

 

 

【Be Careful about the Norovirus】

As you may know, winter is the season when it's very easy to get infectious gastroenteritis and food poisoning due to the Norovirus. It's a strong virus and can be transmitted even with very little contact.

The virus enters your body via the food you eat or from your hands from touching something. It causes vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain and fever. You can get the virus through inhalation if someone with the virus in the area has been vomiting or had diarrhea. You can also get it from foods that have been cooked by somebody infected by the virus. It can also be transmitted by eating shellfish, like oysters, that haven't been thoroughly cooked and are carrying the virus.

Severe vomiting and diarrhea can cause dehydration. So if you think you have caught the virus, get checked by a medical professional as soon as possible. You'll recover in a few days but the virus can hang around for a week to a month, even in your stools, and so it is possible to infect others, something we need to be careful about.

We can take measures to prevent the spread of infection, however. Be sure to wash your hands with soap before preparing meals, before eating and after using the toilet. Make sure you wash your utensils and cooking tools thoroughly after each use and disinfect them with bleach or boiling water. Alcohol disinfectants aren't that effective against the Norovirus, but heat is. The Norovirus is killed at temperatures of 85-90 degrees Celsius.

So, make sure that when you cook, things are cooked thoroughly and that you wash any fruits and veggies that you don't cook. And, of course, if you don't feel well, try to stay away doing too much in the kitchen.

 

 

【Enjoy Walking the Fukuoka Castle Ruins in English】

Our next bit of information to share with you is a chance to enjoy some history here in the city. Language school volunteers will be holding a Fukuoka Castle Ruin walking tour in English for those who are interested in learning more about it. This event will take place every Saturday in February from 10:30am to 12:30 pm and is only 100 yen to join. Spaces each week are limited to ten people on a first come, first serve basis. Reservations need to be made one week in advance of the date you'd like to join. For more information, please call 092-733-5050. Again, that number is 092-733-5050 for the Fukuoka Convention and Visitors Bureau. Why not rediscover some of Fukuoka's great history with your guide? It's a popular tour so sign up soon!

2022.01.10[Mon] 09:00

Japanese(日本語) , Housing(住宅)

【Ways to Battle the Cold without Burning through Electricity!】


January 20th is known as the coldest day of the year and is called “Dai-kan” in Japanese which translates to “Big Cold”. Sometimes winter brings in cold that is so harsh that even if you are using heaters and other warming appliances, the room doesn't manage to warm up. And as you're trying to get that room warm, you end up keeping the heater on which means a big electric bill later. But then again, if you try to just grin and bear it and stand the cold, you'll end up making yourself sick. So here are a few tips to help you get through the winter cold.
First, get some thick curtains. There are curtains made especially for holding in the heat and also provide soundproofing. So if you are looking for some new curtains, these are the ones you want to protect you from the cold outside. You also want to avoid letting drafts in through the window, so make sure your curtains are long enough to touch the floor. If there are windows you don't need to open, I would also recommend putting thick, clear vinyl over them. You can either tape it over the window or make a frame that fits into the window. My dad did this every year in his bedroom and it made a huge difference without sacrificing the daylight.
Another thing to do is get a nice thick carpet or rug. You can really feel the cold through the flooring in houses and apartments in Japan. By putting a carpet down, that fluffy goodness will keep a layer between you and the cold hard floor, making your feet happier for sure. It also serves the double purpose of providing some soundproofing too.
If you're trying to save a bit of cash, you can still find some good stuff at the 100 yen shop they've got those interlocking sponge mats, cushions and other things that will help you get through the winter. My winter necessity is my “yutanpo” or hot water bottle. I keep that at the foot of my bed and it keeps me warm all night. It brings the cats to the bed too, adding to the warmth!

 

 

Some information from the Fukuoka City International Foundation to share with you.

【Japanese Chatting Salon】

Today's information is for any international students who are studying in Fukuoka. Do you about the monthly Japanese Chatting Salon? Using Zoom, international students and Japanese volunteers meet one on one or in small groups to talk about topics that interest them. If you are looking for a chance to use daily Japanese as well as practice the Japanese you've learned in class, or just want to chat with a native Japanese speaker, then definitely join in! The sessions are free and the next session will be held online on January 31st

To learn more about this event or to make a reservation, please visit the Fukuoka City International Foundation's website or the Attaka Fukuoka Facebook page. You can also call the Foundation at  092-262-1799. Again that number is 092-262-1799. Phone calls will be accepted from 9am to 6pm on weekdays.

Definitely check it out!

 

【 Looking for Residents for the International Student Dormitory】

The Foundation is also looking for students who are interested in living in their international student dormitory. Applications are open to international students who are currently enrolled in universities and graduate schools in the Fukuoka Metropolitan area. Other qualifications for residency in the dormitory include being able to actively participate in and cooperate with projects held by the Fukuoka City International Foundation. The period of residence is for two years from the day you move in. Single residents are also eligible.

For more information and other application requirements, please check the Fukuoka City International Foundation's website or contact them by email at dorm@fcif.or.jp.

2022.01.03[Mon] 09:00

Medical Treatment & Health(医療・保健)

【Toshi-ake Udon-Opening the year with udon】


Have you ever heard of Toshi-ake Udon? I hadn't and so I'll share a little bit about it with you. As you know, on New Year's Eve, people eat toshi-koshi soba, or kind of “year-end” noodles. It's a pretty well known tradition across Japan and I'd guess nearly everyone tries to have soba before the clock strikes midnight. Toshi-ake udon, however, isn't nearly as well known. And, well to be honest, that's understandable as it's a fairly recently created custom. Apparently, it was introduced on New Year's day in 2009 in an attempt to expand the consumption of udon and bring back udon's popularity.
Since long ago in Japan, udon has been considered an auspicious food with it's soft white color. It also signifies a wish for health and longevity as it is a thick, long noodle.
To make toshi-ake udon is a pretty simple process. You only need to top your udon with a red ingredient of sorts and eat it between the 1st and 15th of January. Things like umeboshi, kamaboko or even shrimp tempura are all great ideas and the sky is the limit really, when you think about it.
And although Fukuoka is famous for ramen, historically, this area is said to be where udon was first brought from China, Jotenji-temple is considered its birthplace here, and as such, there are a ton of udon shops in the city. Udon on a cold winter day is just the thing to warm you up, so why not give toshi-ake udon a try? So where to go? Well, you could just pick up a pack from the supermarket and do it at home if you want to keep the price down, but if you feel like getting out, I'd say search for Asian Beat, Fukuoka Udon, to take a look at one article I found with a whole variety of udon shops in the area. The Samurai Udon shop over by Hakata Station looked interesting, but if you want something more traditional, Yataro Udon near Tenjin Minami station also looked good.

 

【COVID-19 Vaccination Information】

Now, I have some information from Fukuoka City to share with you. Fukuoka City has been working toward making sure everyone who hopes to be vaccinated can do so with peace of mind. In Fukuoka City, inoculations for the third dose of the vaccine have begun. Residents of Fukuoka City, who are over the age of 18 and have received the previous two inoculations will receive the vaccination coupon for the third dose in the mail.

For those who have not yet taken your first or second inoculation but hope to do so, please visit the Fukuoka City homepage or contact the call center for information on where you can get your vaccination done.

For information on vaccinations or for advice or to make a reservation, you can call 092-260-8405. Again, that number is 092-260-8405. Calls will be taken between 8:30 am and 5:30pm every day. 7 languages are available at that number, including English, Chinese, Nepali, Vietnamese and Korean.

>> 続きを読む

2021.12.27[Mon] 09:00

DJ's Recommend(DJのオススメ)

【Look Back on 2021 & New Year's resolution】

Well, it is the last show of the year today as we are very quickly approaching 2022. How was the past year for you?
Mine was pretty good. Camping has become quite the popular activity over these last two years due to not being able travel internationally and so there has been a lot of focus on camping supplies in shops and online. As a result, I've found so much great camping equipment and managed to go camping a few times this year. There are so many wonderful campsites in Kyushu, we went to a few in the Kuju area and even did a camping van trip in Hokkaido this year. I think next year we'll continue with this new hobby of ours.
I also started a patisserie course at Nakamura Culinary School in Hirao. I'm always really impressed with the cakes and other confections I see at shops around town and decided to give it a try myself. We're only halfway through the course, but I've made so many different things and I think I'm getting better at it although recent attempts at cake decorating haven't been as good at home as at school.
Some exciting news over the year that happened in Japan was the opening of Super Nintendo World at USJ. Well, personally, I found it exciting. I don't really play games but grew up with Super Nintendo and Mario and it feels like my childhood come to life. I haven't been yet, but I'm planning on being there tomorrow. Fingers crossed it's everything I've always imagined it to be.
Generally speaking, I guess a lot happened around the world this year, some good, some bad. For me, I thought these two stories were nice. First, the Perserverence touched down on Mars back in February which was a huge event. And the mini helicopter Ingenuity that Perserverence carried to Mars even flew on the planet, which is just amazing technology. And, new animal species were discovered, including a tiny nano chameleon, small enough to sit on the tip of a person's finger.
At home in the US, the biggest news was that my great aunt turned 100! My family turned out to celebrate with her, they gave her a big surprise party. Otherwise, it was life as usual for the folks back home it seems.
There was a lot of other news but rather than reliving some of the things we'd probably rather forget, I guess it's time to move on to 2022. So what do you think 2022 will be like? Fingers crossed we can get out of this pandemic, I know there are a lot of people who haven't been able to meet friends and family in person due to travel restrictions and I hope next year that people will be able to meet up again. I imagine next year we'll see more technology, that seems to be changing so fast all the time anyway.
Is there anything you want to do in 2022? I'd like to learn how to bake bread like I see in the bakeries here, guess I'll have to find a good course for that. I'd also like to get my Japanese level up a bit higher, I took the JLPT exam earlier this month but I'm so out of practice that I don't think I did that well. I guess my new year's resolution is to study harder!
I guess we still have a few more days before we have to make our new year's resolutions though, plenty of time to think about what to do in the new year.

Well, enjoy these last few days of 2021 whatever you do, whether it's a bit of travel, spending time with family and friends or getting some quiet “me” time in.
Thank you as well for joining me throughout the year for Life in Fukuoka. I hope the information has been useful and interesting for you.
There will be plenty more of it next year as well, so hopefully we can continue helping you out with information on how to make life a little more comfortable here in Fukuoka City.

>> 続きを読む

2021.12.20[Mon] 09:00

Other Topics(その他)

【Strawberry】

Well, you know it's coming up on the holidays here when you start to see strawberries in the supermarket. Actually, they start showing up as early as mid November in some places but as we really start feeling the holiday spirit and head into December, it's nearly impossible to miss those rows of red, shiny fruits. The actual season for strawberries that are grown outside is from April to June. During the cold winter months, the strawberries are dormant and as the temperature rises in the spring, they wake up and begin to bear fruit from spring to early summer. However, the technology to create a spring-like environment in greenhouses has become widespread making it possible to harvest strawberries in November and December.

It seems this all was thought up in order to be able to harvest high quality strawberries in the winter season in line with Christmas, when the demand for strawberries skyrockets.

In Fukuoka Prefecture, a strawberry called Amaou has become rather famous. The name comes from the beginning of the Japanese words Amai, Marui, Ookii, Umai, which mean Sweet, Round, Big, and Delicious. In English that would sound like Swrobide...I guess. Amaou is a much better name for sure and it's actually an original Fukuoka Prefecture strawberry. One fruit is about twice the size of a regular strawberry and has an exceptional flavor. It's cute round shape and it's rich taste are the secrets behind its popularity.

Hopefully I can get my hands on some Amaou at a reasonable price this season, I've been taking baking classes and have promised Christmas cakes to a few people this year!!!

【Ward office consultation and putting out the garbage over the New Year Holidays】
Now, I have some information from Fukuoka City. Over the new year holidays, there are a few changes to ward office consultation hours and the days on which you can put out the garbage. For ward offices and the Health and Welfare Center, please be aware that these places will be closed from Wednesday the 29th of December to Monday the 3rd of January. The last day they will be open in 2021 is Tuesday the 28th of December. They will reopen in the new year on Tuesday the 4th of January. In the days before and after the new year holidays, the ward office consultation counters will be busy so make sure you give yourself plenty of time when you go there.

Also, from the Friday the 31st of December to Monday the 3rd of January, please do not put your garbage out for pick up. Burnable garbage can only be put out on your area's scheduled garbage day up to Thursday the 30th of December and then after Tuesday the 4th of January. For nonburnable garbage and glass and pet bottles, if Sunday January 2nd is your regular day to put them out, instead they can be put out beforehand on Thursday, December 30th.
For areas where Monday, January 3rd is a regular pickup day, garbage will be picked up instead on Friday, January 7th.

Also, applications and pickup for oversized garbage will be stopped between Wednesday, December 29th to Monday, January 3rd, so please be aware of that.

 

 

【Spend the New Year's Holiday safely】
Fukuoka City wants you to enjoy your winter holidays safely and enjoyably and has a few tips to share.
From the end of the year to the start of the new year, there are a lot of opportunities to drink alcohol. So, make sure, 100%, that you don't drink and drive, don't make others drink and drive, never allow someone to drink and drive and don't ignore someone who would drink and drive. Even cycling after drinking is against the law.
And it's important to remember that even the next day you might have some alcohol in your system or will be hungover. In that case, even if you think you only have a little bit of alcohol left in your system, it doesn't mean you should drive, because you shouldn't.

Also, every year, the end of the year sees more and more traffic accidents. If you are out late at night, make sure you are wearing bright or reflective clothes that are easy for drivers to notice. And if you are driving, make sure you turn your headlights on earlier in the evening.

Next, we have a warning for you about bag snatching incidents. There have been a number of these crimes from the evening to midnight in places where there are few people around. A lot of these incidents have occurred with the criminals riding motorbikes and snatching bags as they pass by. To avoid being involved in such an incident, make you carry your bag on the side opposite to the road and pay attention to your surroundings, making sure you look back behind you if you sense signs of people or hear a motorbike.
Protect yourself and the things that are important to you and have a safe and enjoyable winter holiday.

>> 続きを読む

2021.12.13[Mon] 09:00

Housing(住宅) , Events & Entertainment(イベント・娯楽) , Other Topics(その他)

【Telephone Establishment Day】

I've got a little bit of history for you today. Apparently, December 16th is Telephone Establishment Day. A slightly awkward title for the day, but it was on this day in 1890 that Japan's first telephone service began. Now, there are phones all over the country and it's convenient and easy to even call people anywhere in the world, but at the time the first service was established, phones calls could only be made from Tokyo to Yokohama. And there were only 200 households that were subscribed to the service, a minuscule number compared to how connected we are today!

To make a call in those days, you had to connect to a telephone operator who would patch you through via a telephone exchange. It was a very analog process. The caller would first tell the operator the number of the person they wanted to call. They would then hang up and wait for the phone to ring again to connect. Now, 130 years later, we've all got our own personal phones. And, they're not even just for talking, if you've got internet on your phone, you can connect to anything you want across the world!

So, a little bit of trivia for you about phone calls now. The frequency of telephones ranges from .3 to 3.4 Kilohertz which is the range in which people can hear voices well. In other words, you can't hear things that are outside of this frequency over the phone. So sounds made by cicadas, crickets and wind chimes can't be heard as their frequency is too high. So if you want to share these sounds with friends, it's better to take a recording and send it....over your smartphone!

Announcements from the Fukuoka City International Foundation.

【Call for Applications for International Student Housing: Family Rooms】

Currently, there are some student housing family rooms open to applications for international students enrolled at Universities in Fukuoka City or the Fukuoka Metropolitan area.

To be considered, applicants must be enrolled in a University and also be willing to participate enthusiastically in projects conducted by the Fukuoka City International Foundation. The lease period is for 2 years and single tenants will also be considered.

For more information about the application and other requirements, please visit the Fukuoka City International Foundation's homepage or send an email to dorm@fcif.or.jp with any questions you may have.

 

【Why don't you “Come and Enjoy the Charms of Thailand”!】

On January 8th, you can feel like you've taken a quick trip to Thailand at the “Come and Enjoy the Charms of Thailand” event. At this event, Thai students studying in Fukuoka will teach you useful Thai expressions that you can use when traveling as well as hear about everything Thailand has to offer from the Fukuoka Branch of the Thai Tourism Authority. 

It's a great chance to prepare for when we can all travel freely again. You do need to apply in advance to participate in this event, so please check the Fukuoka City International Foundation's homepage for application information and event details. Whether you just love all things Thai or you're thinking of going someday, definitely check out this event.

 

【Fukuoka City International Foundation End and Start of Year Holiday Closure】

Finally, the Fukuoka City International Foundation will be closed for a period of 6 days, from Wednesday, December 29th  to Monday, January 3rd . It will reopen on Tuesday, January 4th at 8:45 am.

The appointment-based free legal advice service for foreigners will not be available on

Saturday, January 1st , the next time it will be held will be on Wednesday, January 19th.

The consultation services with the Gyousei-shoshi or administrative lawyer for matters

related to immigration, residency and nationality that don't require an appointment will

resume on Sunday, January 9th.  For more information please call 092-262-1799. Again,

that number is 092-262-1799. You can also check the Fukuoka City International

Foundation's website for information.

The staff members at the Fukuoka City International Foundation hope to continue being an

antenna to gather and provide a wealth of information and support to you, the foreign

residents of Fukuoka, in order to make life here in the city even more comfortable in 2022!

>> 続きを読む

2021.12.06[Mon] 09:00

Medical Treatment & Health(医療・保健) , Other Topics(その他)

【The Big Clean】
There's only just a bit of 2021 left, how time flies. And in December, in Japan, many people typically do a big, thorough house cleaning. It's called “O-souji” in Japanese.
This is a custom that has been followed for a long time in Japan and the purpose of it is to get rid of the dirt that has accumulated over the year in order to welcome the kamisama or Japanese deities into your home on New Year's Day. The two key points to doing this big clean is preparation and the weather. A clear day with just a bit of a breeze is perfect. A lot of water is used for cleaning so saving your bath water to do it is an eco-friendly way of doing things. Plus, having lukewarm water will save your hands from freezing as you clean, which means you get things done faster!
You'll, of course, need cleaning supplies like rags and a mop, but make sure your cleaning liquids are stocked up as you might think you have enough but end up finding out that you've run out in the middle of the job.
When doing O-souji, the order in which things get cleaned goes from top to bottom, meaning ceiling, then walls and then floor and back to front, so the back of the closet, to the cupboards and under and around the TV, which makes sense and ensures that you don't dirty up a place that you've already cleaned. It sounds like a big job but once you get done, you'll have a clean and tidy house to welcome in the new year. I'm mentally prepping myself to get it done this year. We managed to kind of do it last year but may have got distracted midway through. Good thing my vacuum robot always works so hard for me!

 

【World Human Rights Day and Human Rights Week】

 Next, I have information from Fukuoka City about human rights. Human rights are the the inalienable rights which everyone is entitled to as a human being from the time they are born.

December 10th is Human Rights Day and this isn't something just in Japan, it is something that takes place all over the world and is a day to think about Human Rights. And from December 4th to the 10th is Human Rights Week, and here in Fukuoka City, a Human Rights Respect Week is held with the goal of creating a comfortable, discrimination free place to live.

In the same way that we recognize ourselves as individual, irreplaceable beings, at the same time, others are also individual, irreplaceable beings. And so this is an important week to recognize that all of us are valuable, precious beings.

 

In order to realize a society where no one is left behind as laid out by the Sustainable Development Goals for countries, we need to eliminate prejudice and discrimination against women, children, the elderly, foreigners, those with disabilities and all others who may face that negativity. Simply, we need to respect one another's human rights.

So let's keep compassion and a person's irreplaceability in mind as we move through this last month of the year.

 

【COVID-19 Vaccination Information】

 As you know, Fukuoka City has been working toward making sure everyone who hopes to be vaccinated can do so with peace of mind. In Fukuoka City, anyone over the age of 12 who is registered as living in the city and is eligible for vaccinations will receive COVID-19 vaccination notice in the mail. If you have not yet been inoculated but hope to do so,

please visit the Fukuoka City homepage for information on where you can get your vaccination done.

The vaccine is free. You will be given 2 of the same dose, 3 to 4 weeks apart.

After you receive your vaccination, a sticker will be placed on your vaccination sheet. This shows that you have been vaccinated and which vaccine you have received. This is an important document, so make sure you do not lose it.

For information on vaccinations or to make a reservation, you can call 092-260-8405. Again, that number is 092-260-8405. Calls will be taken between 8:30 am and 5:30pm every day. 7 languages are available at that number, including English, Chinese, Nepali, Vietnamese and Korean.

2021.11.29[Mon] 09:00

Rules & Manners(ルール・マナー) , Medical Treatment & Health(医療・保健)

【Stove and Heater Safety】

Well, we are very nearly to December now and it really feels like winter is settling in. And so, I have no doubt that your heaters, portable stoves and other warm equipment is out being used. And so today, I want to share with you a few tips on using them safely.

 

Naturally, make sure that there is nothing flammable around your heating units, things like paper or cloth. When you are using gas or kerosene heaters, make sure you ventilate the room on a regular basis.

Apparently, there have been reports of products in bathrooms and toilets as being the cause of some fires; the warm water wash function on the toilet seat was the reason for one of these fires, so it's important to make sure your appliances are up to date and that there is no dust build up around the plugs as this can be the cause of fires. Just a quick clean with a vacuum hose or dry wipe will take care of that.

 

With the cold weather, making hotpots at home becomes a more regular thing, especially in my house, but if you are using one of those little table top stoves, make sure you have put the canister in the stove correctly and have moved anything flammable out of the way as accidents have happened. And when you throw the gas canister away, make sure there is no gas left in the can. To be sure of this, take the can outside away from any possible flames, and lay some paper or cloth on the floor. Press the nozzle down on that cloth or paper and let it spray until nothing comes out. Once  that's done, you can put the empty can into the blue Non-burnable Garbage bag.

 

 

【World AIDS Day】

Next, I have a few announcements from Fukuoka City.

First is about World Aids Day on December 1st. Every year around the 1st of December, around the world, various events and activities take place, to deepen awareness and understanding of AIDS.

Even after being infected by HIV, definitive symptoms may not appear for a period of time and so it is believed that there are a number of people who have been infected but will not be diagnosed until the onset of AIDS. By detecting HIV infection early and receiving the appropriate health care and treatment, the onset of AIDS can be delayed.

 

At the health and welfare centers of each ward, HIV screening is offered. This screening is free of charge and anonymous. So, if you think you may be at risk, get checked as soon as possible. Screening is only on certain days so make sure you check which days before you go.

And, I don't know if you know this but the red ribbon is a symbol that shows awareness and solidarity with those affected by AIDS. The red ribbon announces to others that you have no prejudice against people affected by AIDS and gives that message that we will not discriminate against those living with AIDS. So for World AIDS Day, let's all take the time to learn the correct information about AIDS and how to prevent it.

 

 

【Illegal dumping of garbage or Fly-tipping】

I hope this doesn't really need to be said, but dumping oversized garbage and household waste in the mountains, forests, by the seaside, by rivers, on the road, or in parks is illegal.

In Fukuoka City, at the end of the year, many people do a big house clean and a lot of garbage is produced. As such, December has been designated as “Illegal Dumping Prevention Reinforcement Month”. Activities will be undertaken to strengthen measures to prevent the illegal dumping of waste.

Fukuoka City has, in cooperation with the police, installed surveillance cameras and warning signs in places where illegal dumping is common and will carry out patrols of those areas. Home appliances like TV's, refrigerators and freezers, washing machines and dryers, air conditioners and the like, are all subject to the Home Appliance Recycling Law and there is a set way to dispose of them. If you are buying replacement appliances, the shop will pick up your old appliance. In Fukuoka City, you can speak with Best Denki or Yamada Denki for help with this.

When disposing of these items, recycling fees or collection and transportation fees are necessary.

Traders who advertise “Free pick-up for items you don't need” are illegal collectors who have not received permission from Fukuoka City. Please do not use these unauthorized collectors as problems such as illegal dumping, high fees and improper processing of waste may occur.

2021.11.22[Mon] 09:00

DJ's Recommend(DJのオススメ)

【Christmas Events and Illuminations】

You may have noticed that in Japan, the moment Halloween ends, Christmas decorations and promotions show up everywhere. I actually saw one of my local supermarkets getting the Christmas sweet packs out on the floor on Halloween! For me, growing up in the US, holiday decorations didn't go up until we got through Thanksgiving, which in the US is the 4th Thursday of November. This year, that will be this coming Thursday the 25th.  Anyway, in the US, my family would usually get our Christmas tree up the first or second week of December. My dad wasn't the type to rush into these things, we usually bought a live tree and if you put it up too early, by Christmas we'd have lost a lot of pine needles, as we were terrible about remembering to water it. Christmas morning meant stockings, then breakfast and then presents. My sister and I used to wake up so early just to go into the living room to look at the Christmas lights and see all the presents Santa had brought us. In the afternoon, we always went to my aunt's house where the whole family gathered for a potluck, more presents and a couple good games of poker. In Japan, my Christmas is a bit quieter, but I do still put up a tree and decorations. In past years, I'd invite friends around to celebrate with me and I'm hoping to do so this year if everything looks alright. I usually cook a big main meal, a few years back I did Beef Wellington, another year it was ham, I've done roast chicken and most recently I did a beautiful crispy slab of pork belly. Mashed potatoes and gravy are a must, mashed potatoes are easy to make but I know gravy is sometimes a mystery for Japanese people. It's easy to make, the simplest way would be to make a roux with flour and butter. Add a consomme bouillon cube and hot water, mix and simmer until thickened. It will give you an idea of what gravy is. For real gravy though, you need to roast some meat and take the drippings to make the gravy base. I like to add sauteed onions and mushrooms to the gravy and lots of herbs like thyme, sage and parsley. There are recipes online so if you want to try something different for Christmas, just find a recipe that suits your fancy!

 

 

Christmas Illuminations

Well, all this talk about Christmas has me all excited for the season now! I guess going out to see some of the Christmas illuminations around the city will put me in the holiday spirit even more. All around Tenjin and Hakata, shops and even some houses are brightly adorned with lights and other holiday decorations. Some places change up their decorations every year with different themes depending on what they are doing and others keep it consistent, and something to look forward to every year. Getting hot wine like at the Christmas market is probably the smarter thing to do. Enjoy the lights and stay warm!

 

 

Illuminations Around Fukuoka

There are quite a few places to see Christmas Illuminations around the city and one handy guide for foreigners with that information is Fukuoka Now, a free monthly magazine. There are usually lots of pictures and it's pretty easy to understand where to go. Take a look and head out for those bright lights with your partner, friends, family or even on your own!  You can find the magazine online if you look up Fukuoka Now.

https://www.fukuoka-now.com/ja/fukuoka-winter-illumination-guide/

 

 

The Christmas Market

I mentioned getting hot wine at the Christmas Market a bit earlier, so if you were wondering about that, well, in Fukuoka, every year from November to December 25th, there are Christmas Markets set up in Hakata and Tenjin that really give you that wonderful cozy winter feeling. It is the largest Christmas Market in Japan, set up over a few different places with stalls lined up under the Christmas decorations and lights. You'll find a range of delicious drinks like hot chocolate and that hot wine I mentioned,  as well as a pretty good menu of foods to try. It's a fun event and this year the markets will be set up at the square in front of Hakata Station and Fureai Hiroba Square in front of Fukuoka City Hall in Tenjin.

There will also be a light up in Nakasu called “Nakasu Kibo no Hikari” which started last year. The trees along the road in Nakasu are lit up from 5pm to midnight, making it another spot to enjoy.

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DJ紹介

  • Colleen
  • Colleen
  • 誕生日:11月11日
    血液型:AB
    出身地:USA Detroit, MI
    特技:I can plan a party at anytime!
    興味あること・趣味:居合道、柔術、料理、スキューバダイビング
    好きな音楽:Almost everything, depends on my mood.

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