Monday, September 23, 2013

Short Trip, Sharp Eyes

Is there something about short trips that sharpens your powers of observation?

This is the thought that crossed my mind after reading Anu Garg's latest posts on AWAD, which has been aptly described by the New York Times as "The most welcomed, most enduring piece of daily mass e-mail in cyberspace"!

Over the past few days, Anu has been posting Japan Special's after a brief visit to the Far East. Despite having stayed and traveled extensively in Japan for two years, some of his observations have come as a big surprise to me.

I did not know, for instance, that "skosh", "honcho" and "tycoon" were all English words borrowed from NihonGo. Neither did I notice that each of the 47 prefectures in Japan has its own cutesy police mascot, created to "win the affection of the people and make them feel safe"!

Japan's 47 Prefectures and their 47 police mascots! (pic source:

The one for Ibaraki is neither a frog, nor an owl but a skylark named Hibari-kun.



* Japan's Mascots --

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