You can’t stop a man who’s in love! Only, he should really consider a better candidate…
Hop on a train to off-the-beaten-path Yamagata Prefecture any weekend from September through November, and you’re bound to see crowds of people congregating and cooking pots of something delicious by the local river. Yup, imoni-kai season is in full swing!
Imoni (芋煮) is the name given to a taro root stew native to the Tohoku region of northern Japan. Apart from its delicious taste, imoni is also famous for the social aspects of its creation. Families traditionally congregate on a riverbank (the practice of which is known as imoni-kai, literally, “imoni gathering”) and cook the stew from scratch over a fire pit. In that sense, you can think of it a bit like an autumn version of o-hanami, the popular Japanese tradition of viewing cherry blossoms in the spring.
Join us after the jump for a glimpse at a unique cultural tradition of northern Japan which many Japanese people in other parts of the country have never even heard of!
China’s Huizhou can count several water-based tourist stops within its expansive city limits. Nearby Daya Bay is dotted with islands and beaches, and the town’s hot springs’ mineral contents are said to soothe a number of ailments.
Recently, Huizhou’s waters once again attracted attention, although not necessarily of the positive sort, when one of its rivers suddenly turned a vibrant hue of red.
It’s well-known that China’s struggling with some serious air pollution, but perhaps less talked about is the toll being taken on their rivers. According to a recent survey conducted by Chinese media, 96% of respondents felt that not a single river around them was clean enough to swim in. And judging from these photos, anyone who did decide to risk a dive would probably come out looking worse than the Creature from the Black Lagoon.
Water pollution is quickly becoming the most pressing concern for Chinese citizens. Stories have been flowing in about all sorts of things from sex dolls to OD victims have been found floating around in China’s rivers.
The previous incidences have all had relatively happy endings. This time however, a milky white river in Jiangsu city may hold more chilling implications for the local residents.
On August 12 in Wenling City, Zhejiang Province, calls were flooding into the local police department that “a dead body was floating in the river.”
When they arrived on the scene they indeed found a young woman floating by herself, except she wasn’t dead. She was napping.
The river you see here has been used by the residents of this part of Wenzhou, China daily for doing the wash. However, on the morning of 9 August they awoke to a puzzling sight.
The river had been dyed a milky white color overnight.