Writer: Joel Neff

Joel came to Japan for a year out between jobs in October, 2000.  That year turned out to be so full of fun and adventure that he stayed.  And then stayed some more.  Now, he divides his time between teaching, and writing, with a little bit of photography thrown in for good measure.  He loves to travel both inside and outside Japan and is currently planning where to go next.  More information can be found on Twitter .

Utsunomiya Castle: Peace in the Heart of the City

Sometimes, after a long day of shopping, you just need to find somewhere to sit down for a few minutes. If such a spot is green and peaceful, that’s even better. Fortunately, for anyone who finds themselves in downtown Utsunomiya City, whether for business or pleasure, Utsunomiya Castle Ruins Park provides exactly such a spot.

Let's Play Shiritori (or Word Chains)

Let's play a word game. I'll start with the name of a place, like a city, state, province, or country, and you tell me the name of a different place that starts with the last letter of the city I mentioned. For example, if I say Rome, you might say Ethiopia. Which would mean I need to say someplace that starts with A. So, I'll use Aichi, which is a prefecture here in Japan. Then you start with I and so on and so forth.

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