Sakai is a metal-working city, with a long history of manufacturing swords, guns, and, after the war, bicycles. We have some nice kitchen knives from Sakai which we bring back with us regularly to be sharpened by the people who made them.
This is how they make some kinds of knives; grinding forged steel blades one at a time on the big wheel. Keith got to try on a fresh blade (that could be fixed if he messed it up). The handles are very wobbly and it takes both force and concentration to get an even grind along the edge.
Aya's uncle sent us some madai (真鯛, or "red sea bream") he had caught near his home on Kyushu. They came in a special cooler-truck and the door-to-door delivery was about $25. Same-day delivery in Japan is just operating on a completely different level.
Bunches of fresh garlic in the local market.
Spring turning to summer; the sakura at the top of the hill in full bloom while the green bamboo grows lush below.