Autocom Japan’s City “YOKOHAMA”

Hi, this is Jamie. How are you guys doing?
As many of you know, Japan had fall version of “Golden Week” this year called “Silver Week” last week.
It was a 5-day-weekend, I’m sure everybody enjoyed the long weekend.

What did I do? I had a little family reunion.

My parents came over to Yokohama using $10 freeway plan from Nagoya.
It seems to be about less than 4 hour driving without any traffic from Nagoya to my place, so it’s not so bad, right?

We visited some Harbor area in Yokohama, where our beautiful office is located at.
This is one of the signature places in Yokohama and there were many people walking around indeed that time.

Yokohama, home to Autocom Japan

Do you see the Ferris Wheel in the picture?
That Ferris Wheel is lighten up at night and it’s pretty romantic when you see it from the bridge like this one below.

Yokohama Port

There is a big ship in this harbor.
I don’t remember the name of the ship, but it’s a real historical ship.

Yokohama, home to Autocom Japan

That’s our city, Yokohama.
I’m not a local here, but I’m glad I moved to this area.

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Tokyo Motor Show 2009… how will it turn out?

So, summer has ended and a new season has begun.. hope everyone’s doing well! Here in Yokohama, weather has suddenly turned chilly and rainy (we’ve even had a typhoon earlier this week). Like so many others, I find myself wishing that this summer had lasted a wee bit longer (actually, more like a LOT longer!).

Now on to topic… as car enthusiasts all over the world know, this is the year of the 41st Tokyo Motor Show. Set to take place from near the end of October to early in November, this biennial event always attracts millions of car lovers from worldwide wanting to see the many innovative concepts and exotic supercars. Only this year, it appears that things are looking rather bleak for this international event. Take a look at the current list of exhibitors at the official site:

http://www.tokyo-motorshow.com/en/booth/index.html

As you can see on that page, most non-Japanese car manufacturers have pulled out of the show, leaving mostly Japanese car makers such as Toyota and Honda. That means no Ferrari, Chrysler, Maserati, Lamborghini, Audi, or Volvo? not even Volks Wagen?? Ok, so of course their quality cannot be compared to Japanese cars, but it’s really sad because in the 3 previous motor shows I have been to, those European and American cars always added a flavor to the show.

The last Tokyo Motor Show we had (TMS2007) was not as great as the previous ones, but still much bigger than this year’s is set to be. I’d like to share with you today some photos of that 2007 show. I know they’re 2 years old now, but we will not be seeing the likes of most of these in this year’s event (And everyone likes to see pics of exotic cars, right?). They are all fascinating cars to look at, and their brands will be sorely missed this year.

Maserati Gran Turismo
Maserati Gran Turismo

Honda CR-Z
Honda CR-Z concept (hybrid)

Mazda Taiki
Mazda Taiki

Mitsuoka Orochi
Mitsuoka Orochi, design inspired by a serpent

Alpha Romeo 8C Competizione
Alpha Romeo 8C Competizione

Audi R8
Audi R8, one of my all-time favorites

Ferrari 599 GTB
Ferrari 599 GTB


Subaru Imprexa WRX. Too bad Subaru pulled out of WRC soon after this was released.

I don’t know if I’ll go to this year’s motor show after seeing this exhibitor list, but if I do I will be sure to post pictures.

The Kind of Japan You don’t often See or Hear About

Hello people! Hope you’re all enjoying your summer (or winter, depending on where you are) because I sure am! 8) Too bad it’s almost over…

This month I went on a trip to Kamikouchi, which is an inland area of Japan surrounded by beautiful mountains.
Now, when most foreigners think of Japan, I’m sure that the things that come to their minds first are stuff like the glittering cityscape, advanced technology, anime, … and of course our high quality cars (right?). Not many would think of mountains and valleys covered in lush forests or of rivers that flow through them. Which is why I’d like to share with you today some of the photos I took in Kamikouchi.

A little info about this place: it is a piece of land about 1500m above sea level, surrounded by a mountain range. One has to travel many miles through winding mountain roads and narrow tunnels to reach it. What makes the trip even harder is the fact that regular cars are not allowed into the destination; you have to park at a certain point, and take a bus or taxicab the rest of the way. I don’t really recommend taking the bus (which I did) because the rough ride will make you carsick.
But let me say this: it is definitely worth the trouble! The scenery is so utterlessly gorgeous that you forget all about the bumps and discomforts of the journey on the bus… that is, until it’s time to go home, and you are forced to endure the ride all over again.
But, enough about this.. I will shut up now and post the photos. Enjoy!

River in KamikouchiRiver among trees.

Kamikouchi mountains

Yakidake, a dormant volcano, behind Taisho Pond

kamikouchi06

kamikouchi07River again…

kamikouchi02Stumps of trees destroyed by a volcano eruption protrude from a pond.

kamikouchi03I suppose you’ve got it by now that there’s a LOT of water in this area. 🙂

…and that’s it for now folks! Hope you liked the pics.
Mahalo for reading!

Maki