Late Autumn in Rural Shiga

In November and December we can see gradual but dramatic changes in rural Shiga Prefecture, Japan. Brilliant autumn colors appear and then fade, and deciduous trees and shrubs begin to appear barren as they reveal their branches. Bird populations change; most cormorants, egrets, and herons leave for warmer places, and winter migratory birds begin to […]

Hatonomori Park in Summer

Hatonomori Park in Moriyama City (守山市の鳩の森公園) is a wooded public park with a few concrete picnic tables, a play area for children, and a small stream on two sides. The park covers 1.86 hectares. On some weekday mornings local people, mostly seniors, gather to play ground golf. On hot summer days the sounds of ground […]

Taiko Practice

http://soundcloud.com/gpjp/taiko-practice Listen to the recording on SoundCloud (5:48). A taiko group often practices in Moriyama on Saturdays. Sometimes they sound like a professional group, but January 23, 2016, was a practice day for children. This recording is the end of one nonstop session that lasted about 15 minutes. They practice very close to the Shikansen […]

Soybean Harvest

On November 24, 2014, I went cycling along Yasugawa in Moriyama. I took my camera and a new zoom lens I had just bought. I had hoped to find some wildlife along the river, but I saw onlya few Japanese black kites soaring high overhead. Just below the bridge, Hattori-Ohashi, I saw farmers harvesting soybeans. […]

Ride to Biwako after Typhoon 11 and Super Moon

Typhoon 11 of 2014 passed through western Japan on August 11. By midnight the southern sky was clear enough to see the super moon, although fast-moving clouds from the southwest often obscured the view. The morning of August 11th was clear in the east, so I took a 36 km bike ride down along Yasugawa […]