Thursday, August 24, 2006

The Roof, The Roof, The Roof is on Fire!

Because of the extreme heat, you see.

Sapporo BreweriesSo, it has been hotter than Helsinki around here recently, so Lyanka and I have decided to do the traditional Japanese thing and flee Tokyo for the more temperate climes of Hokkaido, specifically the grand olde citie of Sapporo. Some of my more cultured readers may recognise Sapporo as the name of a beer, and indeed the lure of visiting the Sapporo Brewery was a major factor in my desire to get my vacationation on in Sapporo. While we are on the topic of beer, and beers named after cities, let me just point out that the Kirin Brewery was established in Yokohama (only several blocks from our old apartment, at that) with help from one Thomas Glover, a Scottsman that I am proud to call one of my illustrious ancestors. Whether this claim contains any actual veracity is an investigation left to the reader. Longtime readers of the jmglov blog may recall that Lyani took a "field trip" (I would have called it a "feel good trip" instead) to said brewery, an occurance which I promptly chronicled here.

Yebisu BeerOh yeah, and beers named after cities: Yebisu, which comes from Ebisu, which is the same word, except the Japanese deprecated the hiragana for "ye" a long time ago (there was a "ye" character in the manyogana, if you are a hardcore Japanese or linguistics--or Japanese Lingistics--geek), as per this fine page (after linking the aforementioned page, I noticed that it belonged to none other than Jim Breen, fellow TLUGger, founder of the EDICT project, developer of the smashing WWWJDIC dictionary interface, and all-around fine human being). And what, pray tell, is my connexion with Ebisu / Yebisu? Well, that is where one Japanese office of Pricewaterhouse Coopers Japan is located, and said office handled my visa when I started working for Amazon.

So anyway. Off to Sapporo and the beer halls thereof we are, and not a day too soon, for they say "autumn weather" is coming to Tokyo next week. I will, frankly, believe that when I see it, since last year we had to use the air conditioner into the first week of November, and only had to crack the heater on a week or two before Christmas.

In other news, I have been playing a lot of football recently. I played with the FC chaps (and in this case, FC stands for "Fulfillment Centre", not "Football Club") on Thursday night, the Rabid Arsenal Supporters Clubbe (or R.A.S.C.E., or NAMBLA) on Sunday afternoon, and the HQ chaps on Tuesday night. Tragically, I had a sore thigh muscle that I didn't know about on Tuesday, so the first time I took a right-footed shot, I felt it, but good. The upside was that I got to use my left foot a lot, and found that it was not the inferior tool that I had remembered. Of course, it could have just been born of necessity, but I had a few Beckham-like shots with some really nice spin off my left. Anyway, three outings, three goals. Which is nice, since I had a nice long string of goalless matches before that.


matthew said...

Yo. A few months ago I had some "Hokkaido crab" at a Hokkaido fair in Oita. It was one of the best things that I have ever eaten. You should try to get some in Sapporo if you can (out of season but you can still try). I hear that you should avoid the "baikingu" places because they are tourist traps.

I bet you really want to go down to Hakodate for the Shinsengumi stuff but that is probably a hard sell (^_^)

Josh Glover said...

Oh, we gorged ourselves on crab last night, as you will see from an upcoming entry. It was a "baikingu" place, and it was a tourist trap, but we had a sweet JAL Tours coupon. :)

If we came to Hokkaido for a week, or even four days, I could not be kept away from Hakodate even if Lyani had a specially-designed Bakumatsu historical site repelling device of some sort. But with being in for only three days, the four-and-a-half hour train ride from Sapporo puts the kaibosh on a Hakodate trip.