Venetia Stanley-Smith is seeing her 21st Spring since moving to Kyoto s Ohara area. She cooks a pound cake using mugwort and black soybeans and makes a trip to a market for handmade goods, taking home a cup crafted by a woodworker. Venetia then visits an embroiderer in Hyogo Prefecture, where she learns about a type of stitching said to protect children from evil. On the way home, she stops off at the studio of ranma transom window artisans in Osaka. She finds their designs to be beautiful, intricate, and functional.
A challenge taken by a man Queen Elizabeth calls a “gardening magician.” Kazuyuki Ishihara is known around the world for his designs. He has won eight top prizes in various categories at London s annual Chelsea Flower Show. In 2016, he received the President’s Award, an honor given to a work chosen from all categories. This year, Ishihara is competing once again, aiming to be the first person to win the President’s Award twice in a row. Tune in and watch his gardening magic.
Air pollution in China is said to be killing many people every year. Under Xi Jiping’s leadership, the country has promised the world to reduce particulate matter pollution by 45% to PM2.5 in time for the 2022 Winter Olympic Games. The program reports on the ground from Wuhan, where residents living close to the factories of one of China s greatest domestic corporations have been dying one after another, the steel city of Tangshan in Hebei, which consistently ranks worst for pollution in China.
People in Japan building fulfilling new lives in the rich natural fringes of human settlements, the Satoyama of hillside farming regions and Satoumi of the seashore, are increasingly in the spotlight. These cafés exist to spread the word about the blessings of their locations. The program introduces cafés in a belt from Kumamoto to Nagasaki Prefectures, southern Japan. Our traveler is Alex Cerr, an oriental studies researcher from the United States.
Nara Prefecture is a treasure trove of shrines and temples. Come along with travelers to the area that was the capital of Japan some 1, 200 years ago. In part 1, American musician Nelson Babin-Coy encounters masterpieces of Buddhist sculpture at Todaiji temple, founded in the 8th century.