Sunday, September 30, 2007

bela nok

It was the third year for Bela Nok (white night) event and the first time for me to be there. There were series of events held everywhere in Skopje, like live band music in the Macedonian Square or at other outdoor stages, exhibitions in museums, street performances, arty movies, etc. I did not go last 2 years, but, seeing from the program this year, I think this year event was quite extensive and had wider varieties of cultural performances than ever. There were full of people in the center of Skopje, from teenagers to older people. Actually, it was very impressive. With the amount of people who were there, the scale and varieties of contents, and the number of locations of events.


Wednesday, September 26, 2007

rakija marketing?

Rakija is very popular hard liquor (very hard for japonka) in Macedonia, usually people drink it with salads (shopska salad, for example) before starting a meal. It is made from fruits like grapes, fermented and distilled, like brandy. Its alcohol content is normally 40%, or sometimes, like homemade rakija, it can be 50 to 60%. It is a nice souvenir item, but I had never brought it to Japan, because, for a long time, there were only either too large bottles or uncute small bottles used for rakija bottling, which was, most of the case, it is not worth for travelers to carry around as a souvenir. But now, it seems there are cute small bottles available from Tikves. Cute and well designed. Now I can bring rakija as a souvenir of Macedonia for friends. Someone seems start working on marketing. That's something new.


Monday, September 24, 2007


It was a very warm weekend in Prague. It was a perfect weather for walking. So was in Skopje, it seems. It was a nice autumnal equinox day.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

autumn weather

Yellow leaves and fallen leaves everywhere in Skopje. A jacket is needed at night to go out. It is refreshing, though. It will be a bit colder than this in Prague..


Monday, September 17, 2007

mavrovo national park

Between Lake Mavrovo and Galicnik, there is an area with unique mountain view. The bare hillside reminds me some landscape from Egypt. A flocks of sheep are walking around in the dry land. From one of the hills, you can see a nice view of the lake. Contrast between the green around the lake and the dry color of the hill is amazing. It is a nice hiking course and also a nice playground for mountain-bikers. If the weather is like this weekend, it might be a bit hot since there is no shade around there.


Wednesday, September 12, 2007


I was raising shiso (Japanese perilla; the green stuff you find on sushi plates usually. But not in Macedonia ;) this summer at home. It was quite successful and I was able to eat them almost every day. With soba, with soup, with tofu or with any kind. Tuna-shiso pasta, Japanese salad with shiso dressing, or whatever. Now, it just came to my mind an idea how to enjoy it more before the season is over. Since summer is over and shiso is also getting over, I have to implement this idea asap. I should bring this to Nobu and ask to roll with their sushi rolls. Customized sushi roll! a la japonka.


Monday, September 10, 2007

suddenly autumn in macedonia

Suddenly the temperature dropped lately and the summer is over. This weekend, the heater at my apartment was on. At my new apartment, there is no city central heating system (nor a wood stove), but own electronic heaters. Which means I can control the room temperature. It is actually very nice, especially in a day like this weekend, when the city central heating system is not ready yet.

ここ最近急に気温が下がり、マケドニアはもうすっかり秋みたいです。この週末はヒーターとかつけちゃいました。新しいアパートはスコピエ市のセントラルヒーティングシステムではなく(もちろん薪ストーブでもない)、じぶんちストーブなので、自分で好きなときに好きなように温度調整が出来るので、けっこううれしいかもです。 市のセントラルヒーティングシステムは10月の2週目までつかないしね。

Thursday, September 06, 2007


Sopotsko is a meze bar for arty people. Musicians or artists are regular customers. It is in the building that has an old European architecture taste near a city park in Skopje. There is no sign outside of the building, so, only those who know the place would come. Well, maybe that is why the atmosphere there is a bit hideaway. The interior is well designed by using the old European style architecture as well as nice natural lighting from the windows. It is recommended to go there during the daylight.