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Dear Alice,

On a recent train trip to Nikko, I spotted several small cemeteries in the middle of rice fields. I’ve also seen this from a taxi window on the way to the airport in Kanazawa. I’m guessing these little groups of graves are family plots, but why the heck are they located in the middle of rice paddies? Our taxi driver suggested it’s a matter of convenience: Since the farmers are in the fields every day anyway, it’s easy to visit the deceased on the way to or from work. True?

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