What Itadakimasu Means

What Itadakimasu Means

My wife and I visited Japan in 2016. We spent 10 whirlwind days exploring Osaka, Kyoto, Tokyo, and their surrounding areas. It was a wonderful trip, and someday, we hope to return, exploring more of the rural areas. Some evenings I watch NHK World, the English-language version of Japan’s NHK News channel. It’s similar in…

Life is Like a Cox of Donuts

Life is Like a Cox of Donuts

So you want to know who I am? Who I really am beneath this digital persona who occasionally writes things online? Well, you’re in for a treat. Pour yourself a cup of hot chocolate, grab your weighted blanket, sit down by the fireplace, and get comfortable. Uncle Justin has a story to tell. Note: Some…

130 Year Old Sushi in Tokyo

130 Year Old Sushi in Tokyo

On a side street in Ginza — Tokyo’s wealthiest district — just around the corner from a supercar gallery is Sushiko Honten’s modest store front. We enter to a small sushi counter that is full of patrons. The light-wood interior is equally modest given the high-end neighborhood. Sushiko Honten is Tokyo’s second-oldest sushi establishment. The restaurant first opened its…

Oh My Okonomiyaki!

Oh My Okonomiyaki!

Our first day in Japan, my wife and I visited the amazing Himiji Castle west of Osaka. The castle was built in the fourteenth century by people used to walking everywhere. Living in the suburbs of Florida, I am not conditioned to walking everywhere — let alone at elevation. We arrived back in Osaka with tired legs…

So you want to travel for free?

So you want to travel for free?

Over the last two years my wife and I have upped our travel game considerably. We’ve explored Japan, NYC, DC, Vermont, Montreal, St. Petersburg, and later this year we’re going to the Pacific Northwest and Chicago. Across all of this travel, we have not paid for a single flight or hotel room.¹ In early 2015…