Sep 23, 1999

A woman on the narrow road

One might not imagine that Lesley Downer — author of books on Basho’s travels, Japan’s richest family and now geisha — started out in the culinary arena. A vegetarian living in gaijin-scarce, small-town Japan in the early 1980s, Downer gradually built up a collection ...

Aug 5, 1999

Thatched huts for the 21st century

TSURUI VILLAGE, Tokushima Pref. — Still hidden away in Shikoku’s remote Iya Valley, the thatch-roofed home made famous in Alex Kerr’s “Lost Japan” is taking out a new lease on life — one that may alter this country’s approach to conservation and development. Kerr ...

Apr 17, 1999

Life lessons in pottery and prints

KOBE — Traditional Japanese art aficionados in Kansai will have a rare chance to learn the finer points of both Bizen pottery and ukiyo-e woodblock prints through a double exhibit of John Wells’ Bizen works and Peter Ujlaki’s ukiyo-e collection at the Community House ...

Apr 15, 1999

Healing society's ills from the roots up

BANGKOK — As Thailand rapidly converts from agrarian state to economic dragon, a growing number of Thai people are looking for solutions to modern society’s own brand of ills. The Bangkok-based Spirit in Education Movement (SEM) points to the country’s traditional Buddhist roots for ...

Apr 7, 1999

Underwater neighborhoods

PHUKET, Thailand — The coral-rich waters of the Andaman and Similan Seas off the coast of Phuket have become a mecca for scuba divers: Here awaits a treasure of diverse marine species, some of which can be found in few other places on earth. ...

Mar 13, 1999

Put an Irish spring in your step

KYOTO — Need to beat those hum-drum blues? Get some spring back in your step with some great Irish dance music by Kesh Band, which kicks off its 10-day St. Patrick’s week tour tonight in Kobe. The Kyoto-based Kesh plays regularly around Honshu, but ...

Feb 25, 1999

Uncovering the treasures around us

KYOTO — Some adventurers explore shipwrecks for lost treasure. Jay Gregg makes a living “uncovering” treasure simply by recognizing it before anyone else does. Gregg, an antique exporter based in Kyoto, began his business when he arrived in Japan in 1980. His sister-in-law had ...