I wrote a long, detailed blog about St. Maarten, but it did. It published it and it disappeared into the digital abyss. I’ll rewrite it soon, but on to this weekend.

I got a lot of cycling in and found the folding bike I need for my train and plane-hopping adventures. Moreover, I spent a lot of time in Kamakura.

Kamakura is an ancient capital of Japan and filled with beautiful hiking courses, historic temples and a so much more. I should really visit more is it is the next town over and just a 20-minute walk.

I spent a total of 18 hours walking around the city and surrounding hills this weekend and only saw a fraction of it.


St Martin Part I

A rainy day in paradise. Here are a random collection of the pictures thus far

Corner office? I have a better idea…

Here is my office today, as well as most spring until I move on to western and Kyushu after golden week. Also a special set of updates later this week.

I’ll write (ramble) later about why office work in certain job fields is unnecessary. For now, understand that there is always an alternative option that is a step or leap in the direction of your dreams. Sometimes they won’t tell you the way, or some will stand in your way, push keep pushing.

Tokyo Nights: Golden Gai

For an area full of vistors to Japan, I’m surprised there is so little information about Golden Gai (新宿ゴールデン街) on the Internet, and nothing written by a local so, here we go!

Golden Gai is a collection of 200 bars that is a great light life area which offers a glimpse into what Shinjuku looked like right after WWII. If I recall, it was the black market district turned artsy district in the 70s and now night life area.

The bars in Golden Gai seat about 10 people, although there are a few (Albatross and Brian Bar) that can accommodate larger groups (20 or so). The best part of the smaller seating arrangement is that it is easy to strike up a conversation with anyone around you. 

I usually go to Golden Gai because I enjoy hearing about Japan from people that are visiting. I enjoy seeing and hearing about everyone’s adventures that they have planned. I can say I’ve never had a bad night in Golden Gai.

So if someone in Golden Gai strikes up a conversation, don’t be concerned. It usually a fellow traveler wanting to share stories or a local wanting to speak in English.

Travel in Japan – Atami

In restarting my monthly trips  around Japan, this weekends destination was Atami in Shizuoka Prefecture.

Atami is a small beach/hot springs town about two hours from Tokyo. The city looks very 1970s with its construction style, which is sadly disappearing due to Tokyo-style Heisei era architecture (generic looking train station and tower condos).

Atami has short fireworks shows on the weekends which was the main reason of visiting (that and I needed to get away from my computer/desk)

Travel Japan – Chiba (Minami Boso)

Sometimes, I take a day off from work to enjoy a train ride around rural Chiba Prefecture. As with most places I travel, there is not much to see except nature. And that is the reason that I love southern Chiba Prefecture.

About an hour train ride from Tokyo station is a simple transfer at Goi Station to the Kominato line. It’s easy to spot this station as it looks like on other station in the Kanto region. The trains are old, there are wooden train cars and everything looks like it was built in 1950.

After transferring, it does not feel like it’s just an hour away from the metropolis of Tokyo. In fact, it is a completely different world. The smell of the rural air, the sounds of the insects in the summer wind, the soft rumble of the train along the tracks. The perfect place to forget whatever troubles are on your mind and enjoy the world around you.