Small Drink Big Breakfast in Gifu

Posted on 31. Jul, 2015 by in Culture, Grammar, Travel

One of my favorite things to do here in Japan is to look for a place to eat great breakfast. Around here in Tokai chihou (東海地方、とうかい ちほう), at most cafes, you get a nice breakfast plate just by ordering your drink at breakfast. You get a plate full of bread or rice dish, salad, and fruit (or some type of desert). One of the best places I have found so far is this place called, Saezuri (茶えずり、さえずり). This was a small cozy cafe located in Gifu city.



Photo by Keiko

Once you order a drink,, you get to choose which plate you would like with your drink. There were three plates to choose from. The one I picked today was Japanese style plate with rice porridge, salad, and desert. Look here if you want to know more…


Photo by Keiko

I had a green tea latte (抹茶ラテ、まっちゃらて) with the above plate.  All of this was just about $5, which was about 500 Japanese yen.

I enjoyed the atmosphere in this cozy cafe as well as every dish I tasted including the drink.  Next time when you are in Japan, try one of these morning service with your favorite drink. You will love it!


~ Vocabulary Lesson~

Morning  – モーニング 

When you say the word, “morning” in Japanese, it refers to the morning service which is what I explained above. By ordering your favorite drink, you will get a free plate full of dishes. Yummy!

Okayu – おかゆ、お粥

Okayu is Japanese style porridge. It is soft cooked rice with plum but you can also add some pickled dishes as well as small amount of cooked fish with it to eat together. When someone is not feeling well, this is one of the main dish people cook at home in Japan.

Cafe – カフェ、喫茶店、きっさてん

Small cafe, sort of like a Starbucks style. There are many types of cafes in Japan, one is more western but some are more Japanese style cafes. The one I visited here was more like a western version.

Drink – 飲み物、のみもの

Drink in Japanese is, Nomimono. When you ask for a drink, you can say ” Nomimono kudasai (drink please)” in Japanese.

Let’s Learn Keigo! – Part 2

Posted on 29. Jul, 2015 by in Culture, Grammar


photo from gracias! on


The other day, I had covered basics on Japanese Keigo. There are three forms of Keigo’s in Japanese, but today’s post is all about the first one, called “Polite Language (Teinei go, ていねいご、丁寧語)” By the time you finish reading this post, you will learn not only the basics but also the important aspects of Teineigo, and you will be able to apply it in your conversation. Read on~!


All about Polite Language (Teinei go, ていねいご、丁寧語)

Teineigo, (ていねいご、丁寧語) is the basic Keigo that you can apply. This is the must know Japanese expression, and that you will be using this in almost any conversation you might have with pretty much anyone, even including your friends, family, and relatives.


Teineigo, (ていねいご、丁寧語) just means, being polite. Using polite expressions in your conversation while talking or writing. The basics you will need to know is to add ~ desu(です), and ~ masu(ます) at the end of each sentence.


How do we use “~ desu(です)”?? ~ examples

Desu(です) can be used in sentences such as,

Are you Mr. Smith? – Smith san desu ka?

My name is Hiroko. – Watashi no namae wa Hiroko desu.

Where is the library? – Toshokan wa doko desu ka?

Library is over there. – Toshokan wa asoko desu.

Is this yours? – Kore wa anatano desu ka?

Yes, it is mine. – Hai, watashi no desu.

How are you? – Ogenki desu ka?

He will be absent today. – Kyou karewa kesseki desu.

~Got an idea?


Another form of Teineigo..  ~ masu(ます) 


How do we use “~ masu(ます)”?? ~ examples


Do you eat fish? – Osakana wa tabe masu ka?

Yes, I eat fish. – Hai, osakana tabe  masu.

Do you want to go now? – Korekara iki masu ka?

I am leaving now. – Imakara demasu.

Are you going to the party? – Party ni iki masu ka?

Yes, I am going to the party. – Hai, party ni iki masu.

Are you working today? – Kyou wa oshigoto shite masu ka?

Yes, I am working today. – Hai, kyou shigoto shite masu.


So, for Teineigo, these two are the main forms of expressions you would need to know. Start with simple sentences and expand it from there.  It is always good to use these polite expressions rather than using expressions that might sound too friendly.

Humidity – Mushiatsui! & Firewoks!

Posted on 28. Jul, 2015 by in Culture, Grammar, Travel

I have been in Japan for about a week now, but its has been so hot and humid and that honestly, I have not had much opportunity to enjoy things around here. Humid is Mushiatsui (蒸し暑い、むしあつい) in Japanese. These days, during the summer, people in Japan are very cautious about staying hydrated, especially, heatstroke is the main concern for everyone. Heatstroke is Nechuusho (熱中症、ねっちゅうしょう) in Japanese. You will often hear this word mentioned everywhere during the summer in Japan.


Despite this mushiatsui weather here, I did manage to go to the Fireworks festival (Hanabi taikai – 花火大会、はなび たいかい) that was held in my hometown (Gifu city).  This fireworks is very popular, and it is one of the main local events in the summer.  The fireworks was amazing!  It was by far the best fireworks I have ever seen.  Since I didn’t get to videotape much, I will share with you one of the videos I found on You tube. Just wanted you to get a feel for this amazing fireworks.

YouTube Preview Image


Here is a list of vocabulary or phrases that are related to fireworks.


Fireworks – Hanabi (花火、はなび)

Fireworks festival – Hanabi taikai (花火大会、はなびたいかい)

Let’s go see fireworks! – Hanabi o mini ikou! (花火を見に行こう。はなびを みにいこう。)

I love watching fireworks! – Hanabi o mirunoga daisuki desu. (花火を見るのが大好きです。はなびをみるのが だいすきです。)

I can’t wait to see the fireworks! – Hanabi o mirunoga machido-shiidesu. (花火を見るのが待ち遠しいです。はなびを みるのが まちどおしいです。)

Did you enjoy the fireworks? – Hanabi tanoshinda? (花火楽しんだ? はなび たのしんだ?)

Let’s go see the fireworks again! – Mata hanabi mini ikou ne! (また花火、見に行こうね。また はなび みにいこうね。)

That fireworks was amazing! – Ano hanabi wa saikou datta! (あの花火は最高だった!あのはなびは さいこう だった!)


Fireworks festivals are very popular in Japan. You can find one easily almost in any major city during the summer. If you are in Japan now, or will be here in the summer, don’t miss it. Hope you can catch one and enjoy it!