2008 September 24 Wednesday.

According to the evening addition of the Hokkaido Newspaper, Mt. Asahidake got it's first snow on the mountain peak 初雪冠雪 just today.

Wait a minute! It is only September 24! Say what?!?

Welcome to Hokkaido.

It is time to start wearing warmer clothes again, especially at night.

Summer in Hokkaido is extraordinarily beautiful.

It is also very short. I hope you enjoyed it again this year, as much as I did.

With colder weather approaching rapidly, day by day, I and most other people who live here, will be spending more and more time indoors.

It's a good time to do all of the things you have been planning to do, but didn't do, because you have been spending so much time in the great outdoors.

In my case, I will be spending more time developing web sites and reading books about how to do that, and reading more books about various other things.

For other people, it will be a time to get back to THE classroom and study English or music or flower arrangement or the tea ceremony or whatever.

The long winter in Hokkaido makes it easier to stay indoors and really concentrate on the STUDY at hand.

Recently, I have been getting a lot of new adult students coming to take a look at my classroom, and then starting regular lessons on a weekly basis.

Last week a man and a woman began private lessons every week on Wednesday, starting at 20:00.

The man is about the same age as me, and is also a guitar player with
a band called LIBERTY and the woman works at a law office.

I am also a guitar player so we have a lot in common and we both love many of the same songs.

Mostly stuff from the USA rock and roll style of the 1960s and forward from that time.

I don't play the 6 string guitar as much as I used to, because I like to play the bass guitar more nowadays.

Also, just today, I had two adults come to take a look at my classroom for a free trial lesson.

The man is also a guitar player who likes HEAVY METAL, and the woman can play the trumpet and violin.

Another interesting thing about these two people, is that they both work at Asahiyama Zoo!!!

What a cool job! I love animals too, so I could enjoy a job like that, if ever I had the opportunity to do it.

They both found out about my classroom after seeing this web site on the internet.

In fact, the man who came today is one of the people who has designed and currently maintains the
Asahiyama Zoo Web Site.

A very good web site indeed.

I have a permanent link to it on the
LINKS page of this web site.

The main reason they both came to take a look at my classroom today, is because many foreign tourists come to the Asahiyama Zoo every year, and being able to speak English is very usefu, for their jobs.

I hope they both decide to come back again and start taking lessons on a weekly basis.

I really enjoyed meeting and talking with them today.

By the way, the photo in today's blog is of a brand of Japanese Rice Wine made by
KuniMare 国稀 which is located in Mashike Town 増毛町.

I have been to this rice wine brewery several times, and you can see a
photo slide show of Mashike Town by clicking here.

This particular product is called Hokkai Nigori Zake 北海にごり酒 and was made during July of this year.

It usually hits the shelves of the supermarkets around September and that is why I am enjoying it right now, as I write this blog.

It is not 100% Rice Malt Wine 純米酒ではない but it is raw and needs to be keep cold or it will spoil.

It has a sweet smooth flavor and is about 20% alcohol, so it's easy to drink a little bit too much, and get tipsy.

As you can see from the photo, it is not clear, but cloudy.

The meaning of Nigori is something like "cloudy", and that is why the brew looks something like watered down milk.

The perfect drink for this season.

If you love Japanese Rice Wine the way I do, please try this product.
You won't be disappointed.