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Japan’s Handsome Weeping Boys, Sheep Boys and Lonely Death Cleaners

Working from home and the lack of social gathering due to the Covid-19 pandemic have left the people in Japan extremely lonely. On 12 Feb this year (2021), Japan’s Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga appointed Tetsushi Sakamoto as the Minister of Loneliness to combat the issue of isolation. But loneliness has become a systemic problem in…
10 Aug 2021 5 mins read

Summer retreat onsen in Ehime inspiration for Spirited Away’s witchy bathhouse

If you have binged on revered Japanese animation director Hayao Miyazaki’s enchanting fantasy film Spirited Away, you would have come across its witchy bathhouse, where the film’s heroine Chihiro once worked. Like most Japanese animations where fictitious scenes and sets are often inspired by real life, the same can be said for this bathhouse which,…
9 Jul 2021 4 mins read

From the fringes to the mainstream: The aspirations of new Olympic sports

Keeping the Olympic Games relevant with each new generation of young people around the world has been on the minds of the global fraternity in recent years. The upcoming 32nd edition of the Summer Olympic Games in Tokyo will see four new sports – skateboarding, sport climbing, karate and surfing – make their debut appearances.…
17 Jun 2021 5 mins read

In Defense of Anime: Not Just for Otakus and Weeaboos

Since the early-2010s, the popularity of anime has spiked internationally. In 2013, the overseas market was valued at approximately S$34 million (US$25.3 million). In 2018, that number jumped multifold, to over S$120 million. What led to the explosive growth, and just what is so special about these Japanese cartoons? TheHomeGround speaks with a number of…
19 Mar 2021 4 mins read

Grace Fu Seeks Gender Equality; Tokyo Olympic Committee Adds 12 Women to its Board

Minister for Sustainability and the Environment Grace Fu says more needs to be done to further gender equality, even as more women are taking part in economic activities. In her address during the International Women’s Day 2021 Conference last Sunday (28 February 2021), Ms Fu said that the “growing number of women holding leadership positions…
4 Mar 2021 2 mins read

Vending Machines – Our Restaurant Food Saviours

It’s 2005. You’re sitting in Clinic E of National University Hospital (NUH) waiting to be called in to see a doctor you were supposed to have seen about an hour ago. Lunchtime is creeping upon you, and your hurried breakfast long past – the growl in your stomach reminds you that the need for sustenance…
25 Feb 2021 3 mins read

Top 5 Virtual Tours to Take in 2021

Why virtual tourism? We all miss walking down the aisle – the airplane aisle that is. When you have the world’s number 1 passport, travel becomes ingrained in your culture and taking an annual trip just becomes part of something you do. So with travel being cancelled until vaccine passports become a thing, we’ve put…
31 Dec 2020 3 mins read

Places in Singapore that Feel Like Overseas, as Recommended by Expats

Bubble Burst When Singapore first announced its travel bubble with Hong Kong, Alan Moh immediately booked an air ticket for home. Alan, who works in the medical sector here, had not gone back to Hong Kong in months because of COVID-19. Alan usually flies back once a quarter to visit his family living in Hong…
25 Dec 2020 3 mins read

World Countries Choose Word of The Year; Oxford Says There are Too Many

Fill Me In If Japan and the Oxford English Dictionary were people, Oxford would undoubtedly be the person of many words. For Word of The Year (WOTY), Japan chose a word that was blatantly tied to COVID-19, and naturally so. Oxford, on the other hand, has expanded its annual selection to a whole list in…
18 Dec 2020 4 mins read

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