“Bento and Kyara-Ben” Character Designed Lunch Box

The Japanese people often take their home made “bento”, take out lunch boxes, to school, work and picnics.

A “bento” usually made with rice, fish, meat, and vegetables, and it is nutritiously balanced.

And since the Japanese people care if their “bento” look pretty, making “bento” is like an art project.

There are various “bento” accessories sold at stores. You can sometimes find a whole rack with bento stuff!

The mothers of kindergarten children love to make “kyara-ben (character bento)”, for their children.

“Kyara-ben” food is decorated anime/manga characters, or animals.

There are even “kyara-ben” contests, where mothers make incredibly cute food art to complete.

Not only do people make “bento” at home but “Bento” are also available at many places such as bento stores, convenience stores, supermarkets, department stores, and train stations.

From Japanstyle2010



Traditional japanese house

Picture of the day

May 05th 2010


These are picture taken not far from my house in kobe, I do pass in front of this house a lot and always loved the wall so I had to make it the pic of the day!

Kobe Sanomiya

Picture of the day

May 03, 2010


Nice city and mountain view taken near Sanomiya in Kobe

Ikea Japan

If you’re a gaijin living in Japan, going to shop at Ikea should be on your to do list, in the first week of your arrival in Japan. Why? Simply because you will be able to find a lot of product and furniture that you might need to comfortably live in Japan at a price that will not kill your wallet on the spot.

Ikea was introduced in Japan in 1974, the company launched a franchising deal in 1974, only to beat a retreat in 1986. The exact reasons of the retreat are not clear but it is mostly said that it was because the japanese housing market really did not match the company products.  The Ikea CEO said; ” He attributed IKEA’s failure two decades ago to the fact that the company was not ready for the demanding Japanese market — and that Japanese customers were not ready for the do-it-yourself style that defines IKEA.”

20 years past and extensive reasearch were done by the Ikea corporation, to first understand the Japanese life style and also the Japanese needs.

So with all that the first modern Ikea store was open in Funabashi in 2006 followed by the seconde one in Yokohama also in 2006 and 3 other location in 2008: Kobe port island, shin-Misato Saitama and Tsuruhama. All stores are a massive 40,000 m2 which in Japan is incredibly big for a store.

IKEA in Kobe

A view from my house

Picture of the day

May 2nd 2010

This a view of a Chinese buddhist temple, taken from the balcony of my house in Kobe

Kobe Ikuta jinja and Sourakuen

Picture of the day for

May 1st 2010

This is Kobe Ikuta Jinja on the first day of the Golden week 2010


 Kobe Sorakuen