Nov 24, 2016

A Thought in the Thanksgiving Day 2016 in CA

Hello everyone,

How are you?
I've been doing pretty well since my last blog post in Aug. 2015.  Sorry, I've been absent for a while...  The reason is simply that I have been lazy to write about my life.  My expression in Japanese is still stronger than in English.  But some Japanese people, who recently started to write an English blog, encouraged me to restart my English blog.  It is a opportunity to look back upon my previous thoughts.

Anyhow, today is the Thanksgiving day in the US.  We traditionally celebrate this day by eating a big meal that includes turkey, with family and friends.  I usually spend the day cooking,  participating in a special run event called "The Run to Feed the Hungry" and hanging out with family.  However, this year, we are enjoying a quiet peaceful day at home.  I may run in the neighborhood later.  Just a quiet day.  My step daughters in San Francisco did not come back this time.  After kids grow up, time goes slowly.  We hope to see them soon though...

Now, let me talk about last year a little.

I am still learning translation (Japanese-English).  This is a time consuming process.  My translation skills are improving slowly and I need more time for them to mature.  I focused on learning translation from English into Japanese last year, but this year I've shifted from Japanese into English.  When translating both ways (Japanese to English/English to Japanese), my writing seems smoother and easier to read than when writing in only one direction.  In one direction translation, from English to Japanese, my brain is not flexible like when translating both directions.  Switching between the two languages helps me use words in many ways based on the situation.

Translating has become my hobby, not a way to earn money to live.  I now work for two NPOs as a volunteering translator.  Both are good steps for my future career no matter whether I become a professional translator or not.  I enjoy participating in the important work of the NPOs and assisting people who need my help.  I feel satisfied:)

I am improving my medical English writing using a correspondence course for non English medical writers provided by a Japanese translation educational company called DHC.  The course has been very helpful in improving my professional medical writing.  I will keep studying hard.

Now about my cultural experiences:
My friends in America are mostly locals.  Two of my American friends visited to Japan last year with me and my husband.  It was very precious.  My friends experienced real Japanese culture and we shared an adventurous time together.  They met my family in my home town, and many friends in Tokyo as well. 

                                                    scarecrows (Kakashi)

We ran a full marathon race called the Tomikuji Marathon in my home town.  My two American friends were impressed by all the post harvest rice fields in the country side and the presentation of the many scarecrows that look like dolls called "Kakashi" all over the fields.  In the US, there is no such tradition.  The variety of scenes are interesting.  We ate a lot of snacks served by local farmers during the race so we felt heavy, and the food did not digest well.  We were missable by mid-race with stomachaches.  It was our own faults.  We have to exact our revenge in another full marathon race in Japan!!  Tokyo International Marathon Race 2020 may be an appropriate goal!?


During our trip to Japan, I did interpret for my husband and our friends.  It was challenging to speak in both languages.  Speaking in one language is easier since one does not have to switch brain circuits.  This was a new experience and challenging for me, it was also fun!!  Though interpreting skills are different than translating skills, conveying thoughts to people from other cultures is interesting.  This may become my future hobby too:)  I would enjoy communicating with people in different languages.  It makes our lives more rich and interesting.

I will keep up with my English posts when I have the time.

Please visit my blog when you have the time and share your thoughts.

I appreciate your comments as well:)

Thank you for reading the post today.

Have a wonderful day😄

Aug 2, 2015

Review from the Movie, "Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto"


I have not been updating my blog for a while.
My recent days are pretty good.
Marathon training and translation study make me so busy and require me commitment.
So far both are well handed for me.

This year is the 70th anniversary of after WWII in Japan.  Many documentaries are now being introduced in Japan.

Though I live in the US, Japan TV is available to watch like being in Japan.  It reminds me of Japanese culture and connects me with my identity as Japanese.  I watched a Japanese movie, Isoroku Yamamoto, the Commander-in-Chief of the Combined Fleet and Admiral Yamamoto – The Untold Story of the Pacific War, yesterday.

You may have watched war movies describing key Japanese Military  figures during WWII.  The main character in the movie was Isoroku Yamamoto.  He was the commander when the Japanese military attacked Pearl Harbor on December 7 in 1941.  Yamamoto disagreed with fighting the US because he knew how strong America was  and how superior their industrial capacity was. He learned this as a student at Harvard and during 2 tours as military attaché in Washington DC.  He realized that Japan could not win against the US.

Yamamoto believed the Japanese military attack on Pearl Harbor was done after the war declaration by the Japanese Foreign Ministry toward the US, but it was not done before the attacking because of some miscommunication problem between the Japanese Foreign Ministry and the U.S. State Department , the attack came 1 hour before  the Japanese Ambassador delivered the message of the end of negotiations. It was a huge miscalculation for Japan.  This act was described as TREACHERY by Roosevelt in his speech to the joint session of Congress a day after the attack.  Yamamoto was thunderstruck when he found out the attack had occurred prior to the message being delivered to the U.S. Secretary of State because he knew that this would bring even more resolve from the American people.  Yamamoto’s hope was the U.S. would want to sue for peace quickly rather than get into a protracted conflict.  Yamamoto spoke fluent English so understood the meaning in Roosevelt’s words.  In spite of the success at Pearl Harbor, Yamamoto understood that it was a terrible beginning to the war.  However he was Japanese, so he had to command the Japanese Navy toward war…

I believe Yamamoto wanted to end the war as quickly as possible even if it meant to lose the war..  Unfortunately, his desire to sue for peace ended because the US wanted revenge due to tremendous sacrifices at Pearl Harbor.

Yamamoto was the wisest commander in that he could judge the true war situation in Japan.   Yamamoto was eventually killed by an American aircraft when he was touring Japanese forward operating bases. If he had lived, perhaps he could have helped the war end faster without unnecessary deaths.

The movie ended when Yamamoto shot and died in quietly.  He was lucky not to see what happened to Japan later in the war.  I imagined Yamamoto was bitterly disappointed not to see the war through to its end.  I think he hoped the world would once again be at peace.

I often think about the wars Japan led and the present Japan.  My feelings are complicated. One thing I can say is “Men can easily create war, or they can create peace.”  I was lucky to be Japanese after the war.  There was so much sacrifice by so many innocent people.

Jun 20, 2015

How to make Japanese Green Tea (Matcha) Gelato


This is my second blog post, and sorry I haven't updated my blog in awhile.

Since I decided to become a Japanese-English translator for medical writing last year, I have been studying hard for every day.

The process is sometimes very lonely because I don't get to meet others who, like me, are working to become Japanese-English translators or interpreters. 

 However, I remain positive and determined to achieve my goal of becoming a medical translator.

Recently, I started to write a Japanese blog too, to share information about my journey of becoming a translator, how to write better sentences.

I think the blog helps me a lot by facilitating discussions with other translators and interpreters and learning things about this new career.  

Reading topics posted by others every day is very informative and fun, and inspires me to continue developing my skills and study harder.

Changing topics, and speaking of fun and inspiring, I want to share a recipe for Japanese green tea (matcha) gelato.  

I made it yesterday by hand and it’s so yummy!  You can also use an ice cream maker. 

It definitely saves time. :)

Let’s make it!

[Ingredients]   Serves about 5 

-Milk -1 cup
-Heavy whip cream – 1 cup
-Butter - 1 ounce
-Sugar - 1/2 cup (You can adjust sweetness with less or more sugar)
-Salt – 1 pinch
-Egg yolk – 2
-Vanilla essence – a little
-Green tea powder called “matcha” at your local market (see picture below) – 2 tbs

[How to Make]

1. Add milk, butter, half the sugar, 1 pinch of salt, vanilla essence, green tea powder and yolk into a bowl and stir.
2. Place the bowl into double-boiled water and stir until all the ingredients are smooth and silky.
3. Place the other half of the sugar and all the heavy whip cream into a freezer suitable bowl and stir until the cream is formed. Add #2 above and stir.
4. Place #3 into the freezer for 1 to 2 hours, then remove and stir.
5. Repeat the same process from #4 at least 3~4 times.
6. You are ready to eat the gelato when it is firm.
7. You can add whip cream, nuts, or fruit as toppings.

I hope you enjoy the Japanese green tea (Matcha) gelato.

Have a nice day!

See you soon.

Nov 29, 2014

Nice to Meet You!


My name is Sasha. 

I am a Japanese, immigrated to the USA 8 years ago.
This is my first English blog, so I am very excited to describe myself! :)

The reason why I start the blog in English (my second language) has three reasons.

The first reason is that I want Americans and people worldwide to know about real Japan and the culture.  Now, I live at a local city in northern California.  A Japanese population is very small.  Most Americans around me do not know about Japan.  They often ask me a lot of things about my country and they imagine.  I felt somehow strange about their reaction.  Because many Americans I met in Tokyo Japan were already familiar with Japanese style.  Of course, they used to live in Japan for many years and experienced the culture.  Customs in Japan and the USA are so different.  I have adjusted to the USA style year by year and now so comfortable to live in this country.  Now, it is good time to introduce Americans and people worldwide about my country because my English skills have enough grown.  I also have realized how Japan is wonderful country.  I am proud of myself being as a Japanese and how I love my home country.  I am eager to describe real Japan including the culture, philosophy, customs, history, food, language, etc, with my words.  Then, I'd like to discuss the topics with anybody who is interested in Japan.  

The second reason is because of my career.  I want to be a better Japanese/English translator.  This blog writing will improve my English skills.  My goal is to be a bridge for people worldwide and Japanese through small topics and the conversations.

The third reason is because of raising my motivation up and reflect it into my life.  I like researching and writing.  So far, I have written some blogs in Japanese language only.  Writing in the first language is very easy and comfortable but could share only with Japanese.  I want to expand my thoughts towards the world and share information with more people.  This keep myself working harder.  It must be fun!

Whoever reads my blog, please enjoy topics and information, also you can give me comments. English corrections and advice are more than welcome. I will study by your English sentences as well.

Thank you for reading my first blog.

See you on next topic, probably in a week!