ONE DAY ONE WORD

HASHI

The use of Japanese hashi 箸 or chopsticks (different in form from Chinese ones) is actually learned as a child, so that Japanese moms soon equip their children with small chopsticks (shorter and, in some cases, even with two holes to insert fingers). Generally you can choose in various sizes. The hashi are made of bamboo wood (light and resistant wood) and can be decorated in a variety of ways: painted, engraved or lacquered with urushi (traditional Japanese lacquer) ... They are placed horizontally in front of the bowl, with the points pointing towards left.

HASHI
HANIWA

The haniwa (埴 輪) are terracotta figures manufactured for ritual purposes for the burial of the dead along with other funerary objects and used especially in the Kofun period (III - VI century) in Japan. The funeral offerings of the haniwa statues took many forms, such as horses, poultry, birds, fish, dwellings, weapons, shields, pillows and of female and male human beings. In addition to artistic and religious reasons, the haniwa statues also had the purpose of spatially delimiting the burial mound of the deceased. These figurines were handcrafted by a caste specialized in terracotta production, it was a group of artisans who handed down their art by inheritance and called by the community "be".

HANIWA
TSUNDOKU

Tsundoku (Japanese: 積ん読) is defined as the act of buying books with the purpose of reading them but failing to, thus causing them to accumulate over time. 

The term originated in the Meiji era (1868–1912) as Japanese slang.

It combines elements of tsunde-oku (積んでおく, to pile things up ready for later and leave) and dokusho (読書, reading books). 

TSUNDOKU
TAKOYAKI

Takoyaki (た こ 焼 き or 蛸 焼, literally: fried or grilled octopus) are Japanese fried spherical balls. They are cooked after preparing a batter made with a special wheat flour, inside which a piece of octopus is placed. Other ingredients to add before cooking are the tempura (tenkasu), marinated ginger and green onion trimmings.

When ready, they are garnished with Otafuku sauce for takoyaki or equivalent, minced aonori seaweed, mayonnaise and katsuobushi (dried and smoked tuna flakes).

TAKOYAKI
KOFUN

The kofun (古墳) Are ancient burials present in Japan, typically in the form of mounds and megaliths, dating back to protohistory. They gave their name to the Kofun period (250-538 AD). The most common conformation takes on a shape similar to that of a keyhole, however there are also kofun with circular (empun), rectangular (zempokoho) and square (hofun) shapes.

KOFUN
HANAMI

Hanami (花 見 "looking at flowers") is a Japanese term that refers to the traditional Japanese custom of enjoying the beauty of spring flowering of trees. This tradition is deeply felt in Japan, so much so as to provoke real migrations of millions of Japanese from their cities to the sixty most famous places in the country; there are also forecasts for flowering, such as weather forecasts, to know exactly when the flowering begins and how long it lasts. The show of sakura in bloom takes up most of spring and in Japan it can be seen from early April until mid-May. Traditionally the feast consists of admiring the flowering while consuming a substantial picnic in the shade of the blooming sakura.

HANAMI
DOGŪ

Dogū (土偶; literally "earthen figure") are small humanoid and animal figurines made during the later part of the Jōmon period  (14,000–400 BC) of prehistoric Japan.

A Dogū come exclusively from the Jōmon period, and were no longer made by the following Yayoi period. There are various styles of dogū, depending on the exhumation area and time period.

The total number found throughout Japan is approximately 15,000. Dogū were made across all of Japan. 

Most of the dogū have been found in eastern Japan and it is rare to find one in western Japan.

The purpose of the dogūremains unknown and should not be confused with the clay haniwa funerary objects of the Kofun period (250 – 538).

DOGŪ
HIKIKOMORI

Hikikomori (引 き こ も り or 引 き 籠 も り, literally "stand aside, isolate oneself", from the words hiku "pull" and komoru "retreat") is a Japanese term used to refer to those who have chosen to retire from social life, often looking for extreme levels of isolation and confinement. These choices are caused by personal and social factors of various kinds. The phenomenon of the hikikomori can be considered as a voluntary social exclusion, a rebellion of the Japanese youth to the traditional culture and to the whole social apparatus by adolescents who live in their home or in their room without any contact with the outside, nor with family or friends. The lifestyle of the hikikomori is characterized by a completely reversed sleep-wake rhythm, with the nocturnal hours often dedicated to typical components of Japanese popular culture, such as the passion for the manga world and, above all, the replacement of direct social relations with those mediated by the Internet.

HIKIKOMORI
SHINRIN-YOKU

Shinrin-yoku (森林 浴, in Italian "to benefit from the atmosphere of the forest" or "bath in the forest") is a term from the Japanese language that indicates a particular method of Japanese medicine comparable to aromatherapy, which spread in Japan over the years eighty.

The therapy behind shinrin-yoku takes its cue from an important branch of medical science which claims that spending more time in nature could have some surprising health benefits. If an individual goes to a forest and breathes deeply, he will enjoy numerous benefits, including lower cortisol concentrations, decreased heart rate and blood pressure, decreased stress and cure for depression.

The merit of these benefits would be attributed to the phytonocides, monoterpenes of the wood of trees, which, in addition to releasing special substances in the air to protect themselves from rot and insects, would also seem to benefit humans.

SHINRIN-YOKU
WASABI

Wasabi (ワサビ), or Wasabia japonica, is a plant of Japanese origin belonging to the same family of vegetables more familiar to us, such as radish, horseradish, rocket and cabbage. The roots of this precious and very ancient plant are difficult to find and expensive because they grow rather slowly.
From the root of this plant we obtain a green paste with a particularly spicy taste and a rather dense consistency, well known to those who have tried Japanese cuisine at least once. In fact, it is usually used as an accompaniment to the typical dishes of the Eastern tradition, such as sushi, sashimi, tempura.
This particular sauce can boast antiseptic and antioxidant properties as well as having a high concentration of vitamin C.
Moreover, the root can be considered a natural antimicrobial agent, therefore useful also during the consumption of raw fish, as happens in the eastern gastronomic tradition.

WASABI
YAKITORI

The yakitori (焼 き 鳥, grilled bird) is a typical dish of Japanese cuisine, and consists of chicken skewers.

The yakitori are composed of pieces of chicken or offal of the same skewered on bamboo skewers and grilled, usually on charcoal.

In Japan, in yakitori restaurants (yakitori-ya), every possible part of chicken is found. It is therefore possible to order skewers composed exclusively of parts of the thigh, chest, cartilage, leather and other parts, and the cost of the dish changes according to the part ordered.

YAKITORI