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Jon Wilks Posts

Wassailing: everything you wanted to know but never thought to ask

Not enough wassailing is done in this day and age, in my opinion. It’s a lost talent, overdue a comeback, and this year I intend to get right back into it. There’s no time to lose, either – wassailing is best enjoyed over the festive season, and come late January, wassailing is rarely found for neither love nor money.

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Tenniscoats: “They literally play themselves to sleep”

Back in 2008, I flew to Tokyo to meet Saya, the mercurial vocalist with Tenniscoats. We initially made contact in conjunction with our 4th Tada Sampler, and – truth be told – I’d become something of a Tenniscoats junkie in the interim. Though she’d been delightful in our email correspondence, I found myself vaguely nervous about meeting her in person.

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Visiting Kamikochi

During a brief stopover in Kyushu in the early 1990s, British broadcaster and former Monty Python, Michael Palin, stopped in at Huis Ten Bosch, a faithful recreation of a Dutch town, replete with gouda, tulips, windmills and a clock tower built out of bricks shipped from Holland. Not sure what to make of it all, he dubbed it ’cultural karaoke’ and quickly moved on. It’s a phrase that I’ve had reason to recall many times during the decade I spent in Japan, albeit never before when discussing a mountain range.

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