Samurai Blue

The Japan National Football Team is participating in 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa. The team's nickname is "Samura Blue" for the color of the uniform.

This is the fourth time in a row since the tournament in France, 1998 for Japan to qualify for the Wold Cup.

Because of the time zone difference (South Africa is 7 hours behind Japan), games start at our 8:30 pm, 11:00 pm, or 3:30 am. For this reason, since the start of the World Cup, I have not been getting enough sleep!

Japan is ranked 45th in the world and it is in Group E of the Finals qualifying matches. In this group, we've played against Cameroon (ranked 19th) on June 19. Many people here were pessimistic about the result, but we beat them 1-0!

Last night, the team played FIFA 4th ranked Netherlands. The Netherlands beat Denmark (ranked 36th) 2-0 on June 14th match.

Many people expected Japan to be crushed. But to our nice surprise, it really was a good match, although at the end, the result was 0-1 loss. The team defended well against the very strong team and took chances to attack. Our goalie - Eiji Kawashima - saved several very scary moments, but could not fend-off the amazing shot Wesley Sneijder took at the 53rd min. Japan had some close shots by Yuto Nagatomo, Daisuke Matsui, Yoshito Okubo, and Shinji Okazaki, but they were not good enough.

I am proud of them and I look forward to the next game against Denmark on the 25th. If Japan wins or ties against them, then the team will advance to the final "Round of 16."

The pictures of the Japan Team displayed at Japan Football Museum.

"Samura Blue Park" was set up for the supporters to cheer for the team in Yoyogi.

Samura Blue banner at a sports bar.

Yatagarasu (Three-Legged-Raven) is the symbol of Japan Football Association.

Go Blue!



This time, I am posting some signs I find in Tokyo.

The first one was found at Shimizudani Park in Akasaka, just across the street from New Otani Hotel and Akasaka Prince Hotel.

Top right to left:
Take your own trash home. This facility is for everyone. No bonfires or fireworks.

Bottom right to left:
Be kind to trees and flowers. Do not feed animals. Do not do things that are troublesome to others.

Next one was found at a parking area close from Mitakadai Station.

Illegal dumping is a crime.

Two photos below were found in Inokashira Park.
Please be careful for the path may be slippery due to rain.

Keep the leash on your dog.


Yokojikkei River walk

In the morning of last Wednesday, I had a chance to take a nice walk in Koto Ward. There was a very nice park along Yokojikkei River. It is called "river" but it is actually a canal that was made in 1659.

Beautiful iris.

Turtles were enjoying the sun.

Pedal boats.

A statue of kappa.