May 2012 Archives

Hamamatsu Museum of Musical Instruments

Today, I will introduce you 「Hamamatsu Museum of Musical Instruments」located by Hamamatsu station.
Hamamatsu city is where Yamaha and Kawai; manufacturers of musical instruments, originated.
「Hamamatsu Museum of Musical Instruments」has opened since 1995 as the first museum of musical instruments in Japan.
And various musical instruments, music, and culture of all over the world are introduced there.
It's my favorite place, and I take my friend here if she comes to Hamamatsu city.

20120521-02.JPGEntrance hall↑

The museum is a two-storied building, and the first floor is built under the ground.
A lot of instruments from all over the world, which include 300 pieces from Asia, 60 pieces from Africa, 200 pieces from the Americas, and 300 pieces from Europe, are exhibited here.

Then, what makes visitors fun is that they can listen to the sounds of those instruments through a headset. Those audition areas are in places.
Listening to the sounds of the instruments makes it easier to imagine the air or smells of countries where those instruments are from than just looking at them.
I feel as if I know the countries even though I have never been there.
Sometimes, people come to like instruments of other countries which they didn't know before because of this kind of feelings.

20120521-05.JPGWell, here is the place I love the most, which is the exhibition space for pianos on the underground 1st floor.

20120521-06.JPGKeyboard instruments, such as cembalos, clavichords, organs, and pianos are exhibited here.
Cembalos that are performed in Paris in the 1700s and pianos that are performed in New York in the 1900s have not only beautiful tones but also have particular beautiful appearances as the furnishings.

20120521-07.JPGWorkers at this museum explain about particular instruments and give a live performance a few times a day.  I had a chance to listen to the story about pianos and pipe organs that are performed in the 1900s in the United States on this particular day. 

By the way, concerts of classic, jazz, and ethnic music are also held at this museum on the weekend's nights.
It costs about 1500 yen, but concerts here are much more fun compared to normal concerts. The distance between musicians and audience are closer; furthermore, the musicians give the audience some talk about the instruments.

I am sure there are some museums of musical instruments in the world.
I went to one in Brussels about 10 years ago.
Each museum has a characteristic of what it owns, and if I mention it for Hamamatsu Museum of Musical Instruments, this is it. ↓

20120521-11.JPGIn Japan, domestic organs were developed in the Meiji period; then, domestic pianos were originated after that.
The place that happened was here, Hamamatsu.

YAMAHA pianos are still produced in Hamamatsu.
Old「organs with steps」and synthesizers are exhibited in the area where visitors can learn the 100 years of the instrument history in Hamamatsu.

20120521-12.JPGThis is, ↑↑the first model of KORG(korugu) synthesizer.
(KORG is a manufacturer in Tokyo.)
The development of synthesizers, which can make various sounds, started in 1970s, and it evolved dramatically.
I'm familiar with the shape and color of the switch.
I think how it was made is cool now.

20120521-13.JPGFinally, this↑↑is the YAMAHA grand piano which is made in 1950.
This was the first all -Japanese grand piano produced after the Second World War.
It was the time there was no goods......... I feel the spirit of the craftsman.

Hamamatsu Museum of Musical Instruments, where people who are not fans of music can still enjoy.
The admission fee is 400 yen for adults.
Why don't you visit here? 

Isn't the courier service popular?

When I went back to my parents' home during spring vacation by Bullet Train, I had only a small bag.
My French friend was surprised at it.
French「Oh! Is that all of your things? 」
I 「... Huh ? Something wrong ?」
French 「How about your clothes that you'll wear for that period ?」
I 「...I have already sent.」

Am I general as Japanese?
But, after that, I found the postal condition in France, and I was surprised.
I heard, 「There are some courier service in France, but the rate is expensive , and different from Japanese's. Because Japanese service is painstaking. Moreover, the parcel may be stolen or lost on the way. 」
But, dear, French reader is it true?

Today's topic is 「Courier.」
How about the courier service in your countries?

20120514-01.JPGI introduce Japanese courier service as a represensive of Japan, because I used the service by chance, again.

I think the service rates are cheap.
Because some shipping carriers may compete the price to gain business.
I always use 「Kuronekoyamato」which is one of courier.
In the case of the parcel whose size is 80centimeter included length, width and height, it costs \1000.

I go to a convenience store around my home after packing.
Most of convenience stores or supermarkets accept your parcels, and a worker of Kuronekoyamato carries them out of these stores at a scheduled time.

20120514-02.JPGConvenient stores in Japan are very useful, because there is an ATM and a post inside or outside a convenient store.
I would like to introduce it for another occasion.

20120514-03.JPG↑This is the logo of Kuronekoyamato.
It stands for gentle delivery like that parent cat carries a kitten.

20120514-04.JPGI put a corrugated box next to a casher, and its size is somewhat big.
It costs about \1400.

20120514-05.JPGFirst, fill in a form.
You can designated various things except address and phone number.
For instance, delivery time specification that can be designated the date and time.
Usually, it is delivered within a day or two.
But it is good for a person who only stays at night because of work or wants to be delivered in the morning because she's busy with housework at night.

And, fill in another request; fragile or don't shake it.

If you want them to deliver foods by refrigerated transport, you need to pay extra fee.

And then, there is the COD system, and it means Cash On Delivery.    
In the case of the firm that bears the fee, for instance, when you return goods purchased by mail order, the system is usually used.

20120514-06.JPGWhen you give a form to store clerk, he or she passes a bar code a scanner.
Then, it is under controlled and can be tracked.

20120514-07.JPGThis parcel will get the destination tomorrow.
If it won't be delivered, it gets a big problem.

There are many small trucks in a city, because a lot of people often use these courier services in Japan.

If I could not use the service, I would feel inconvenience.
How do you send your parcel in your countries?

Japanese Goods eBay Auction

Smoking and smoked...

The end of April and the beginning of May are holiday season in Japan.
It is called "Golden Week" or "A Long Holiday", and schools and companies are closed for this period.
Besides, many events and festivals are held every each place.

The Golden Week consists of the national holiday, and week end.
Then, the days of the holiday are different by each year.
In case of this year, holidays are ...
April 28-30th and May 4-6th.
(Some people traveled abroad, because of they took days off for 9 days included May 1-2nd)

Most of places are crowded for the period.
My family usually gets close to nature around our house, and doesn't take a trip.
It's our usual schedule of the Golden Week.
But, this year we tried to do something different.

We tried to smoke some foods.
Smoking is a one of the way of processing that strengthens the flavor and gets them to preserved foods by smoke.

Though a smoking device was sold, my husband made it with big cans.
The first picture shows him and our children, and he explained how to make it to them with the blueprint.

Our children are not interested in it.
.... It's the picture that shows the mood.

20120507-02.JPGThese are many chips of cherry blossom's wood picked at the mountain nearby, and they are crushed by a grinder.
I think many people know the fragrances of smoked foods are different using various kinds of wooden chips.
The cherry blossoms' fragrance is good.
Usually, people buy wooden chips for only smoking.
I wonder if I can use the wooden chips that we made.

20120507-03.JPGIf we master the way of the smoking, we could make bacon and ham.
But, we were all amateur, so we smoked only something easy.
For instance, we smoked eggs, sausages, chicken on the bone, cheese, been curd, cod roe, and salmon. (The picture shows boiling chicken and eggs)

While I was ready with foods...

Our smoking device was finished.
We made a fire with charcoal on bottom of the lower can, and put wooden chips on it.
The smoke rose to the upper can.
The device can be put two wire nets inside of those two cans, and we put foods on them.

Furthermore, we can also hang foods.
Because smoking takes around 2 hours, we made the device with three-way to smoke a lot of foods at a time.
We're greedy.

20120507-07.JPGSmoking was finished when we were about to eat dinner.
We could smoke well even it was our fist time.

We don't have a long holiday until summer vacation after Golden Week.
Today is the last day of the Holiday...
If adults and children think about it , they all get disappointed, but still, let's try again~!!

Japanese Goods eBay Auction

The garbage, how do you take it out?

This is the first picture↑ Do you know what it is?

The answer is the garbage disposal area.
The garbage that is always produced by a human being who lives.
I think there are various methods of taking out garbage in each area and country.
The residents usually do it as a part of life.
We cannot know how to take out garbage in a country where we just go on a trip, don't we?
I don't know how people in other countries, either.

Then, I will introduce common way of taking out garbage in Japan.   

I will write about Hamamatsu city where Miko lives as an example.
But the condition and way of it is almost the same in other places in Japan.

I usually take out ....
1.「combustible garbage」on Tuesday and Friday.  
2.「garbage that a part is recyclable , but the rest are combustible like a plastic」on Thursday
3.「empty bottles, cans, and plastic bottles for recycling」every other Monday
4.「incombustibles」every other Wednesday

20120501-02.JPGThe garbage box used at each local area is different.
The residents of 30 houses nearby pay together for a garbage box.

These boxes piled up upside down are used to separate into recyclable garbage as I state above as 3.
After collecting them, garbage men put the boxes upside down.

And, we basically take out garbage in the morning in Japan.
I have to do it by 8:30 every week day with my group's rule.
Taking out before sunrise or the previous day is prohibited.

We're on duty that we clean and check our garbage site in turn.
If I find something strange left there, I have to bring it back to my home temporarily.
We do so, because the garbage site remained dirty is unsanitary, and number of illegal dumping will increase.
It is a just moral; normal social behavior, and we have to worry about the eyes of around people.    
So we cannot take out garbage in unnormal way.

20120501-04.jpgHowever, all garbage sites anywhere are clean because of such rules.
It is amazing that here is a garbage site, but it doesn't have any dust.

20120501-05.jpgPerhaps, the truck cleans the road early in the morning in Paris.
But there is no such system in Japan.
Mostly, we clean the road in front of our house on our own.
In case of an apartment, a manager of the apartment cleans the road.
So, wasting a trash on the road is a thoughtless action, though some people do.
Children are taught that,「Don't waste a trash on the road」at the school or by their family.

20120501-06.JPGThe story strays from the topic...
We can only use half-transparent garbage bag in Hamamatsu city. 
The vinyl bag like the photo is sold at a supermarket.
Of course, it's not harmful to our health.

There are some boxes for recyclables; carbonate boxes, papers, and milk cartons, for instance, at the storefront of the supermarket.

20120501-07.jpgThe quantity of garbage has gradually reduced in Hamamatsu city, because the recycling movement is fully known to people.
Still, I think there is a lot of garbage in Japan.
How do you take out garbage in your countries?

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This page is an archive of entries from May 2012 listed from newest to oldest.

April 2012 is the previous archive.

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