【トラビスのブログ】Sushi In America Part 1

こんにちは😊

今日はトラビスのブログです。

夏にアメリカに帰っていたトラビスが、アメリカの寿司について書いてくれました。

アメリカで実際に食べられている寿司の写真(トラビス撮影)と一緒に説明していますので、

わかりやすいと思います。

アメリカで寿司を食べたことのない私には、未知の食べものです。

今回はまだまだ序の口で、パート2ではもっと驚きの寿司をご紹介しますので、次回もお楽しみに😊

 

Sushi has become very popular in America. However, there is a big difference between what Japanese people imagine when they hear the word ‘Sushi’ and the actual food that is served at the restaurant. In my opinion, what they serve at American Sushi restaurants is not Sushi at all. It is delicious, but it is not Sushi! Here are some pictures of Sushi from my last trip to America this summer.

 

  • Miso soup, ginger, soy sauce, and pickled cucumber. Seems normal so far…

sushi1

  • Tuna nigiri sushi and inari sushi. Looks normal. Except for the sauce on the inari sushi. I think it was sweet soy sauce. Too salty for me…

sushi2

  • The California Roll. Most Japanese people I have spoken with think this is what American Sushi is like. But this is still normal… this still looks like sushi!

sushi3

  • Now the sushi is getting stranger. On the right is hamachi (with hot sauce!). In the middle is unagi. And on the left… that is called ‘Upside-down’ shrimp. Instead of shrimp on top of rice, the rice is on top of the shrimp. Then crab and sauce are added on top of that.

sushi4

  • This is sushi in America. It is a sushi roll that is deep-fried. Then they cut it, add hot sauce and a sweet sauce. Delicious… but definitely not sushi!

sushi5

 

 

【トラビスのブログ3】Hiroshima study abroad- Arrival

こんにちは😊 

今日はトラビスのブログ「広島での留学、到着」です。

9年前に留学生として初めて日本に来た日の心情がリアルに綴られています。

よく覚えてるなあ、と感心しますがよっぽど印象的だったんでしょうね。

初心者の方にも分かりやすい英語で書かれていますので、是非読んでくださいね!

 

A few weeks ago I returned to Hiroshima for the first time in 5 years. Hiroshima is the first place in Japan I lived. Returning brought up many of memories.

I first came to Japan in 2007 as a study abroad student at Hiroshima University. I had studied Japanese in America for 2 years at my university. Still, I wasn’t prepared for living in a different country.

I arrived at Hiroshima at night. There were Hiroshima University students waiting there to pick me up and take me to my dorm. During the one-hour drive, one of the students started talking to me in Japanese. Only Japanese. I could only understand a few simple questions. Answering was impossible. This continued for the whole drive. I felt so overwhelmed. I realized how much I still needed to learn.

We finally arrived at the dorm and they showed me my room. It was SO small! There was only enough room for a single bed, a desk and a small bookshelf. There was a toilet, but no shower or bath. The room was hot and smelled a little strange after being empty for few months during summer vacation. The students informed me of the orientation the next morning and gave me a map. They said good night and left me there alone. I felt very alone.

I still remember the feeling that night. I was so tired from the long flight, but I was not sleepy as my body clock was so confused. I was really hot and it was so humid. I turned on the air conditioner and it smelled a little strange. Everything was new and unfamiliar.

I could hear someone outside speaking in Japanese. I went out to the tiny balcony and stood in the warm summer night air. I looked around and tried to see the landscape, but all I could see was dark silhouettes of the trees. I tried to listen and understand what was being said, but it was impossible. I couldn’t even make out the topic.

The thing I remember most was my excitement. I was so happy. I was ready to learn. I was ready to study hard and become fluent in Japanese. I told myself “From now on, no more English! Only Japanese!” My motivation was high and expectations even higher.

I tried to relax and unpack a few things. I got into bed. They provided me a rented futon and a surprisingly hard pillow. It felt strange and hot. At least the bed was not too hard and I could get comfortable. I finally slept. The next morning I woke up, got ready, and left to start my new adventure.

The next 10 months were exciting, fun, challenging, and stressful. I learn a lot of Japanese. I learned a lot about myself. I learned that, even though I wanted to, I couldn’t avoid using English. I used English often. I also learned Japanese is too difficult to become fluent in just 10 months. Mostly, I learned that when I challenge myself, even though it is stressful, I feel the most satisfied and have the most fun.

【トラビスのブログ2】フィンランド・ノルウェー旅行記② Finland and Norway② : Sauna

こんにちは😊 今日はトラビスのフィンランド・ノルウェー旅行記の2回目、サウナについてです。

日本の温泉は体験済みのトラビスもフィンランドのサウナは初体験だったそうで、

色々と驚きや戸惑いがあったようです。

ちょっと長めのブログですが、内容的には易しく面白いですので、この週末にでも是非読んでみてください。

 

 

 

 

 

 

                                         Finland is famous for saunas. I didn’t know this until I traveled to Finland, but apparently saunas are very important in Finnish traditional culture. Perhaps it is similar to Japan’s relationship with onsen?

During my time in Finland, I sometimes used Uber (a ‘taxi’ type service). The driver told me that 1 of every 3 households in Finland have their own private sauna. Because of this, public saunas are less popular and going out of business.

Luckily, I was able to go to a public sauna in Helsinki. The sauna was called Kotiharjun Sauna and is located a couple stops from Helsinki central station if you take the subway. It was very fun and interesting.

The building felt very old. The sauna felt very old. Walking into the building, It felt like I traveled back in time to the 1950’s. You enter the building into a small room with a front desk. A door on the right leads to the men’s changing room and sauna. Women climb the steep and narrow stairs on the left to go to the women’s changing room and sauna upstairs.

I entered the changing room. The room was dimly lit and the colors of the room were dark grays and browns. The lockers, tables and benches were made of dark stained wood. Real wood, not the cheap particleboard used in most new buildings. There were cans of beer and Finnish ‘long drinks’ everywhere. Everyone was walking around naked and barefoot. I’m used to being naked after going to Japanese onsens many times, however it was very different when all the other men are tall, large, and hairy!

There was a shower, but not very comfortable. The walls were covered with stainless steel, the floor was brown tile, and the atmosphere of the room felt cold and uninviting. The room was almost empty and had only a few showerheads high on the wall. Usually, when I visit Japanese onsen, the showers are very nice. They have a very warm atmosphere and provide chairs, buckets, soap and shampoo. But this Finnish shower room was very different.

I don’t know the customs for a Finnish sauna, so I looked around awkwardly trying to figure out what to do. Do I take a shower? There is no soap in here… should I get some soap from my bag? Or should I just enter the sauna? Do I bring my towel or not? Unfortunately, there was nobody I could follow. I decided to just wash off and leave my towel on the big towel rack and enter the sauna!

The sauna was warm (of course!), but it was not hot. I expected hot. Then, I climbed to the top row of seats where all the other guys were sitting. It was much hotter up there… Very hot! I’m not really good at saunas (I never even use the sauna at Japanese hot springs). I would have preferred the lower seat, but all of the Finnish guys were on the top row. I climbed up and sat on the top row. I sat in the sauna for a long time (it felt like a long time, but actually it was probably only 5 minutes or so). It was getting really hot. I was sweating everywhere. It was difficult to breath because the air was so hot. I felt like my throat was burning with every breath I took. But, there were still many guys who came in before me. Surely, I should stay longer than them! I waited a few more minutes before giving up and escaping the sauna.

The most interesting part of the sauna came next. After getting hot in the sauna, everyone went outside to cool off in front of the building. Wearing nothing but towels, both guys and girls sat and talked in a big group on the front lawn. Nobody seemed embarrassed at all. Some guys even sat too relaxed, showing more than I wanted to see. The sauna is still in the middle of the city and there were many people walking by. Nobody seemed to notice or care that there was a large group of almost naked people sitting nearby.

After I rested outside, I went back inside and used the sauna one more time. Many people can stay in the sauna all day, but I was done. I finished up, changed and rode the subway back home feeling warm and relaxed. I feel very lucky I could experience the true Finnish public sauna before they all disappear. If you ever visit Finland I recommend the sauna!

(サウナの画像はこちら→https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:20140529_harjutorin_sauna.jpgよりお借りしました。)

 

↓Helsinkiでの一枚

IMG_3923

【トラビスのブログ1】フィンランド・ノルウェー旅行記① Finland and Norway①: Long Days

先週、フィンランドとノルウェーのホリデーから戻ってきた、トラビスの旅行記、第1回です。

英語学習者向けに書いていますので是非挑戦してみて下さい😄

まずはトラビスの書いた英語文を辞書を使わずに読んでみてください。英文の下にボキャブラリーを付けています。

 

I recently took a trip to Finland and Norway with my family. This was my first trip to Europe, and I experienced some interesting culture shock.

 Do you know about the long days in Scandinavia? During the summertime the sun sets very late and rises very early. During my trip last week, the sunset was around 10:30 P.M. and sunrise around 4:00 A.M. Luckily, the windows in my room had very good blinds!

 It is very strange to have the sun set so late. Especially for me because I don’t wear a watch! One evening, after a long day of sightseeing in downtown Oslo, I started getting tired. When I looked outside it was still light. I thought it felt like about five or six in the evening. I was wrong. It was nine. But still, there were many people walking down the streets. The neighbors were talking on the balcony next door. The city was still awake. It was very disconcerting.

 Each night I got tired, but I had to go to sleep while it was still light outside. When I woke at five and it was bright outside (I only woke so early because I was not used to Norway’s time zone). It felt bright enough to be noon. My dad mentioned that, after waking up and seeing the light outside, he felt guilty because he felt like he had wasted so much of the day already!

Having a long day is nothing to complain about. For me, it felt great. However, it is not always so nice. During the winter, the opposite is true. In December, the sunrise is around 9:30 A.M. and sunset is around 3:15 P.M. excluding the hours of twilight, there are only about 6 hours of daylight in the winter. If you add the cold weather and snow, winter in Scandinavia must be very hard.

The moral of the story: If you visit Norway or Finland, go in summer.

 

Oslo, Norway:

June 21:

Sunrise 3:54 AM

Sunset 10:44 PM

December 26:

Sunrise 9:20 AM

Sunset 3:16 PM

http://www.timeanddate.com/sun/norway/oslo

disconcerting   当惑させる

twilight   たそがれ、夕暮れ

moral of the story   話の教訓

 

 

8:00 PM Oslo, Norway: Enjoying sushi and drinks on the balcony⇩

IMG_4025