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About Cassia

  • Rank
  • Birthday 26/11/1967

Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Location
    Kyoto via Geordieland
  • Interests
    Spending all my money going to basho, struggling with Japanese, taking photos of rikishi/temples/shrines, wine (ex-winemaker), writing, F1, traveling anywhere and everywhere.


  • Favourite Rikishi
    Ama, Homasho, Roho (gives great photo),Tochinoshin

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  1. 'As for Natsu basho, I can only get away on weekends: first Saturday and Nakabi Sunday sounds the best. Is there any chance I can find a ticket at this late date?' This was the situation as of today (allegedly), although it depends which sales outlet you speak to. If you, or someone else, call the Kokugikan ticket office direct, instead of going to a local convenience store, you should get tickets easily and they'll deliver them to you. I would advise, although I'm sure others will disagree, getting the cheapest upstairs Arena seat C but then actually staying downstairs and standing at the back during juryo and makuuchi. Then you can catch the rikishi coming in and out while still watching the action.
  2. Cassia

    Love and marriage, love and marriage

    Quote: "I was told several times of the 'need' (unquestioned) to have extra-marital relationships and the industry wide (spouses included) blind eye turned as it 'helps their performance.'" Wow, that's a good one! Only a man would ever use such a bizarre justification for an affair - 'I need to have an affair because it helps my performance'. What rubbish! Maybe they should have said, 'I'm famous so lots of women throw themsleves at me and it would be a shame to pass up the opportunites that offers.' Oh, but that would be an ugly truth, wouldn't it? Another thing is that yes, the divorce rate is low and maybe spouses prefer to turn a blind eye to preserve the family unit, and then there's the social shame of divorce to consider, but also, a lot of women are very unhappy but they don't work or don't make enough money to enable them to get a divorce, and their only option if they do get divorced is to go back to their parents, if they'll have her plus maybe her children. And her mother may very well be the one telling the wife to stay with her husband because the family unit is the most important thing and the wife is being 'selfish' to put her individual disappointments above that unit. I've heard this from two sides: a wife staying with her cheating husband and a woman having an affair with a married man - not the same relationship, I hasten to add! The wife was depressed and unhappy, although she could turn on her social happy face frighteningly quickly. Her mother had said she couldn't go home and that she should get over her unhappiness by having an affair herself! So she's trapped and all she can do is have an affair of her own. Another story came from a girlfriend who thought it was funny that I was concerned about the wife of her boyfriend. She actually laughed when I asked what would happen to the children if the wife divorced him. 'Don't be silly! She can't divorce him! She's got no money - where would she go?' On the other hand, there are a lot of very lonely married men in Japan. They're at the office most of the time and when they come home, their wives and children have a relationship and routine that make them feel ignored and like an outsider in their own family. Again, this is from personal friends, not just observation, and is only their lives, not necessarily everyone's experience. But once their wives have children, their lives revolve around them and their husband just brings in the money. These men told me that they're having affairs, not necessarily only for sex, but to be able to talk to someone and get affection. So, it seems that while a lot of people, sorry, women, might be willing to turn a blind eye, it's not necessarily because they're perfectly happy with their husband cheating because it's a normal Japanese cultural thing, but that they don't have much of a choice. On the other hand, that family unit, so important socially, might not give some men, and women, the personal relationship they need. Some marriages here, especially between those at or over that magic age of 30, are not necessarily arranged, but there's definitely a lot of frantic backstage engineering going on and both men and women might marry people that they 'get on with' and could create a family with, as opposed to being madly in love with. That's not just a Japanese thing obviously, and it's not necessarily a bad thing, but there are a bunch of basically platonic marriages here, which might also explain some of the acceptance of affairs. Oh, I rambled on more than I intended - too much time on my hands in the holiday season, but as a single Western woman living in Japanese society, it's a pretty interesting subject. But yep, Verena, I'm with you - I never expect to find anyone in this country. Too many cultural differences, especially for women.
  3. I'm in Kyoto, which isn't far, and I'm sure you'll be coming here at least a few dozen times if you like temples! And I lived in Osaka for 2 years so I know it well and can help you out if you need to find/do anything in particular. Just to echo what everyone else has said, if you need any other electricals, buy them here; they're cheap, and in the electrical district in Nipponbashi, you can find all the electrical stuff you've ever imagined... You can get adaptors there too, if you need one, especially in the Duty Free stores. As for Visa, I don't usually use my UK card either, although it's never been refused - they just said they had to call up and confirm it. But I totally agree, cash is always the easiest way to go here. Don't worry too much about your Japanese for general living purposes. Yes, it makes things a lot easier, but I'm ashamed to admit that my Japanese is rubbish, and I get along pretty fine, except when I have to abuse people's goodwill to get advance basho tickets! And you can get English train and subway maps with landmarks so it's very easy to get around. It's going to be super-hot and humid in the summer. Super hot. Super humid. And if you're anything other than Japanese sized, don't plan on buying many clothes here, even in Osaka it's difficult, except for shoes - unless you have huge feet! It's a big shame you'll miss Osaka basho, but depending on how early in April you arrive, you might be here for the jungyo at Ise Shrine. One thing: the Japanese like giving little gifts. Bring little things from home, snacks, soap, something typical, just as a gesture for hosts, neighbors, whoever. And bring photos of home to share something of your life. If you've got any Osaka-specific questions, I'll try and answer them! I'm sure you'll have a great time.
  4. Cassia

    Asashouryuu return preparations

    I was being facetious...
  5. Cassia

    Asashouryuu return preparations

    Thank you for your information. As far as you know, are there any signs which say "Asashoryu go home" or "Asashoryu you are a shame to sumo" or similar ? If something like that had happened in Italy for a soccer player, there would certainly be a mix of signs in favour and against ..... Thanks. Hehehe - not that we've seen. Maybe Ms Uchidate is out there with one.. Someone just wondered if he was fingerprinted at the airport. Talk about letting dodgy characters into the country...
  6. Cassia

    Asashouryuu return preparations

    Asashoryu just arrived at the Kokugikan (for those who can't see it). The sign says, "Asashoryu, Welcome Back"
  7. Cassia

    Asashouryuu return preparations

    SFM has a man in the bushes next to the Kokugikan and this is what we've got so far. There are 27 TV trucks, 8 satellite dishes and about 50 media. We just heard (at 16:24 Japan time) that he's in the car and just got off the motorway on the way to the Kokugikan. I saw him on the 4 o'clock news arriving at the airport and he was in kimono but with a ponytail. You'd think they could've fixed his hair before the Press saw him...
  8. Cassia

    Daimonji - Kyoto

    I wrote my wish on a piece of wood but I left it for the organizers to take up the mountain. It was a bit too hot today to be going up there - not very pilgrim-like, I know. It's amazing living opposite Daimonji-yama because I can see so many people lining the river and the bridges, and when everyone sees the first glow of fire, a low roar goes up an down the riverbank - and then everyone gets their keitai out! I like Kurama Hi-matsuri too. More fire!
  9. Cassia

    Daimonji - Kyoto

    Ryogoku. Yeesss, but I thought your post meant that you'd previously lived in Kyoto
  10. Cassia

    Daimonji - Kyoto

    And there were a lot of people up there on the mountain next to the fire - I could see a lot of camera flashes. They were up there all day setting up the wood too, directly under that blazing sun. At least the fire would drive the mosquitoes away...
  11. Cassia

    Daimonji - Kyoto

    Quite the opposite of cool today though - like an oven... I went up on the roof briefly to watch the other two fires I can see from there but it was far too toasty for my liking. Didn't even take any photos. Where did you live?
  12. Cassia

    Daimonji - Kyoto

    Tonight was the traditional lighting of fires on the hills around Kyoto for the Obon festivities. See the Wikipedia link for info. Thousands of people visit Kyoto during Obon, the hottest time of the year, but I'm lucky enough to be able to sit on my sofa in my lovely air-conditioned apartment and see the most famous, so I took a few photos. Sorry for the quality, not up to my usual standard - it was very dark so it wasn't a happy camera.
  13. Cassia

    Ise shrine 1 day tournament

    As Kinta says, it's Minanosato. There are a couple of photos of him near the end of the bonanza.
  14. Cassia

    Ise shrine 1 day tournament

    Thanks guys - there'll be more when I can sort them out. Nishi - that's a great compliment from the photo master! Fay, your boy looked kind of overwhelmed by it all. I only took that one photo because he really wasn't happy with all the attention.
  15. Cassia


    Don't get excited, we already met...