Kathryn Wortley

For Kathryn Wortley's latest contributions to The Japan Times, see below:

The safe thrills of indoor skydiving come to Kanto

Sep 22, 2017

The safe thrills of indoor skydiving come to Kanto

With the call of "Standby!" the butterflies in my stomach start to dance. Effortlessly, my instructor, Kazuki Suzuki, steps out. As I follow him, letting go of the doorway, the sheer force of the wind takes my breath away. All I can do is gulp ...

Hiking the lesser-known parts of the Nakasendo

Sep 8, 2017

Hiking the lesser-known parts of the Nakasendo

Peeping through the wooden slats, I start to realize that the inhabitants of the home I'm in prioritized safety and practicality over comfort. The woodwork is angled at 90 degrees to maximize light in and views out while protecting the occupants' privacy, and it is ...

Unlocking Tokyo's history one step at a time with guided walking tours

Mar 11, 2017

Unlocking Tokyo's history one step at a time with guided walking tours

Tokyo has never had a reputation for being walkable. About 80 percent of trips in the city are made on public transport, according to Reuters, and the sprawling metropolis is renowned more for its safe and punctual public transport system than for pedestrian-friendly streets. Other centers, ...

Heavy metal in Japan: Love of craft runs deep

Jan 7, 2017

Heavy metal in Japan: Love of craft runs deep

Although 2017 is the Year of the Fire Rooster, fire is not the only element destined to influence the next 12 months. Each of the 12 Chinese zodiac years is governed by one of five elements: wood, fire, earth, water and metal, resulting in ...

Buried alive in the shadow of a Kyushu volcano

Dec 31, 2016

Buried alive in the shadow of a Kyushu volcano

"Is the temperature alright for you ma'am?" my Japanese attendant asks in a polished U.S. accent as he cheerfully heaps another pile of hot sand on my torso. "It's perfect." Pleased, he pats down the sand — from my neck to toes — with his shovel, ...