Kagawa

Japanese ad campaign shows how to stop babies crying – by slurping udon noodles

These crying babies are immediately calmed by the sound of slurping, which is said to sound similar to noises heard in the womb.

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“Pop” daruma dolls so popular you’ll have to wait three years to get one

Daruma are a kind of roly-poly wishing doll in Japanese Buddhism. You draw one eye in while making a wish, and then fill in the other when your wish comes true. Given their sweet purpose and blob-like shape, traditional daruma are already pretty charming, but a woodcarving shop in Kagawa Prefecture has found a pop makeover makes them even more attractive, so much so that there is a 3-year waiting list to get one!

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Bath noodles — Do you know about this strange Japanese bathing custom?

As soon as my husband started building an iwaburo rock bath in our house, curious neighbors poked their heads in and asked, “When are we going to eat udon?” This is local parlance for: “When will the bath be finished?”

Japanese is said to be a vague language and thus difficult for foreigners to understand, but this was rather extraordinary. Why such a strange way to ask when a bath will be completed?!

This unusual pairing, I soon learned, can be traced all the way back to Shikoku, one of Japan’s four main islands, and an island famous for its udon noodles. Kagawa Prefecture, known as udonken (the udon prefecture) is particularly well-known for its delicious thick, starchy noodles. And we can thank Kagawa for a very strange custom: that of eating udon while sitting in a new bathtub!

Now, you probably want to know why they would do such a thing. And why udon? Wouldn’t beer and peanuts be more logical? Or, if you’re going to celebrate a new bathtub, why not go all out and have a pig roast in there? Our intrepid bathing reporter tells you why and oh, so much more about Japanese baths.

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Kagawa’s “Udon Generator” begins pumping out the most delicious kilowatts you’ve ever tasted

Actually never mind that, tasting any wattage isn’t really recommended, despite my own preference for licking 9V batteries. Nevertheless, a power source fueled largely by Japan’s girthy noodles called udon is now currently in operation in Takamatsu City, Kagawa Prefecture.

Although generating power from bio-organic sources is nothing new, it seems this plant-based plant has found a way to be sustainable using a peculiar quirk of Kagawa’s udon rich culture.

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There might be something waiting for you at Japan’s Missing Post Office

Many countries’ postal systems have a type of “dead letter office” which handles mail that has been inappropriately addressed and could not be sent. In most cases, if the sender cannot be found the messages are destroyed in order to maintain privacy.

The Missing Post Office, on the other hand, welcomes unaddressed post cards and keeps them for eternity if need be until they end up with the rightful owner even if they aren’t alive. The unusual post office opened on the island of Awashima on 5 October and welcome all to come and read their discarded messages of humanity.

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