This Sunday, I joined a tour which introduces Fukuoka castle. I helped 78-year old lady to go up to the top of the castle, which is called Tenshukaku, and also go up to the observatory of the castle. She said the her grandfather was a medical doctor who was served for Kuroda-han, the castle governors. She brought his picture with her and talked to him that she was so happy to see the castle. I was also happy to see her smiling.
I went to see Sumo matches, which are now held in Fukuoka, with guests from foreign overseas countries for the first time in my life after the international symposium. Because I'm not so familiar with Sumo, it was little tough for me to explain what is Sumo to foreign visitors. But it was a very good experience for me to watch Sumo.
Last night, I went to Nakasu-Kawabata for having a party with guests from many foreign countries, who will attend an international symposium. Before I went to there, I dropped by Kego park in Tenjin. The park is now decorated by Christmas illuminations. That was so beautiful.
There is another old shrine named Kego shrine close to the Tenjin station. According to Japanese Wikipedia, this shrine was said to built in long time ago (mythological era), and moved to this place in 1608. "Kego" means "guard" in Japanese. There was a guard office in Koro-kan. So the "Kego" in Kego shrine and area name derive from the office name.
Last week, I visited Korokan. The staff there told me that in Tenjin, there is a shrine named Suikyo Tenmangu, which enshrines Michizane Sugawara, who was also called Tenjin-sama. The name of Tenjin is derived from the shrine. So I visited the shrine today. Above photos were taken at the shrine.
I found a very unique statue of a group of human in front of the Fukuoka City Akarenga Culture Center. Their faces are flat, like ancient Egyptian arts. This statue was settled for celebrating recovery of the Fukuoka city after World War II. I think that the statue is a very nice art.
This is a Fukuoka City Akarenga Culture Center, which was built in 1902 (Meiji period), in Tenjin area. It was built to house a Kyushu branch office of Nippon Life Insurance company. Now the building is one of national important cultural properties.
Recently, I visited Nakasu-Kawabata several times for preparing an International symposium of epigenetics. There is a huge advertising display saying "Where are you going" in Fukuoka dialect. Because it is a special dialect around this area in Japan, the advertising display has big impact for me.
Today, I went to Yanagibashi market at Fukuoka. This market is old and called "Kitchen of Hakata". My friend told me that Mentaiko, which is seasoned cod roe, sold in Haraguchi Kaisanbutsu Senmonten, is very delicious. So I went there for get the Mentaiko. The shop staff gave me very yummy rice crackers, which include Mentaiko in it, as a gift. I also got fresh fish in another store. Conversation with shop staff amused me. If you want to feel atmosphere of old down town of Fukuoka, I recommend you to visit this market.
I took these photos at Maizuru park that locates between Ohori Koen and the ruin of Fukuoka castle (within 5 min walk from my apartment). I wanted to go to places that are located far away, and enjoy autumn leaves. But actually, neighborhood of my apartment is one of the best spots of autumn leaves. I'm satisfied now.
Fukuoka has so many historical architectures. This gate named "Najima gate" is located between Ohori koen and the ruin of Fukuoka castle. According to the sign...
This gate was once the side gate of Najima castle which was erected in 1587 at the foot of a hill by the mouth of Tatara River. The castle was built by Takakage Kobayakawa, a warlord in what is called the turbulent age in Japanese history. The gate was granted to Kamon Hayashi, a retainer of Nagamasa Kuroda, the founder of the Fukuoka clan in the Keicho period 1596-1614 when Kuroda moved his castle from Najima castle to Fukuoka castle. The gate was installed at Hayashi's residence and is now one of the few remaining parts of Najima castle.
Today, I visited Korokan Historical Museum. A staff there explained history of Korokan. I summarize his talk. Korokan was one of the ancient guest houses for foreign diplomats from China and Korea. Japanese travelers to China and Korea called Kentoshi also used the building. The building had been used since 630 to 894. Then this place was under the ground until recently. Professor Heijiro Nakayama, who was a medical doctor and also an archaeologist, predicted where the building was by studying an ancient poetry book namded Manyoshu and so on at Taisho period. His prediction was the current museum place where a baseball stadium was there at that time. When the baseball stadium was moved, ruin of Korokan was found. Still archaeological dig is continuing. They found a ruin of a toilet. They proved it by finding seeds of fruits, bones of fish and also eggs of parasites! At that time, it seems that people used small wooden sticks called Chugi as toilet papers. How did they know that? Well...they found that eggs of parasites were found on these sticks. [鴻臚館]の続きを読む
大濠公園へ行った跡、お隣の福岡城跡を散策しました。いくつか気に入ったスナップショットが撮れたので、アップします。皆様にも気に入ってもらえたら嬉しいです。3枚目の写真は駐車禁止の紙を無粋な人によって貼られてしまっていますが、「愛を乗せた自転車 (bicycle with love)」なんて題名どうでしょう？
After I went to Ohori Koen, I walked through the ruin of Fukuoka castle. Above photos are my favorite snapshots there. I hope that you like them too. I thought up a title of the 3rd photo. How about "bicycle with love"?
These birds are Pochards. I saw these birds in a pond at Ohori Koen. Their head is red, their chest is black, and their body is white. Their eyes are red. When I took these photos, many of them were sleeping. Their sleeping form is interesting (see right photo).
This is a Daurian Redstart. I saw this bird once in institute of nature study in Meguro, Tokyo. This bird visits all over Japan in autumn around October and goes back to north continent in Spring around March.
This is a Oriental Greenfinch. I saw this bird at the Japanese garden in Ohori Koen. That was my second time to see this bird; once I saw this bird at the Tama river. This bird distributes from Hokkaido to Kyushu. Its yellow and black weathers are distinguishable.
It was cloudy today. So I enjoyed autumn leaves around my apartment. I went to Japanese garden at Ohori Koen. That was my second time to visit there. Red color of maple leaves was matched with the Japanese garden. That was so beautiful.
We will have an international conference at the week after next. So I made a preliminary inspection of a hotel (Hotel Okura Fukuoka) that visitors will stay, and a bar (Baron Okura) for a welcome party. These places were also in a holiday mood. Oops. Time flies like an arrow, fruit flies like a banana :P
I went to see the 2010 Saga International Balloon Fiesta (11/2-11/7). Tomorrow will be the last day. It took about 1.5 hour from Fukuoka to the place using trains. The first game starts at 7:00am and finish at 9:00am. The second game start at 15:00pm and finish at 17:00pm. Today, I saw the second game. Second game is often canceled, because of wind. Today, I was lucky. The game started withour any trouble, and I enjoyed balloons frying in the beautiful sky at sunset. I didn't know, but there are many games using balloon. Today's one was Gordon Bennet Memorial (GBM). Pilots start to fly outside of the competition venue and drop a sandbag to a mark in the venue.
<おまけ> 駅長のタマのラッピング電車が「バルーンさが」駅に停まっているのを発見！いっしゅんタマがどこにいるのか分からなくなってしまいましたが、タマのいる貴志駅は和歌山県ですね。タマ駅長は口蹄疫で被害の大きかった宮崎を応援しているみたいです！JR九州の粋な計らいです。 I saw a cute train (go through Miyazaki) decorated by cartoons of a famous cat named Tama, who is a station manager of Kishi station at Wakayama. Since Miyazaki in Kyushu was suffered by foot-and-mouth disease this spring, Tama is now cheering Miyazaki up by recommending to go to Miyazaki.
These ducks can be crossbreds of Eurasian Wigeon and American Wigeon (may be wrong). I did not know, but it seems that crossbred of two different ducks are not so unusual. Crossbred makes it difficult to identify species of ducks.