When I was cycling to Shigaraki, I came upon an area with many tea plantations. In May the tea plants had fresh young growth on the tips. In my opinion it makes the best green tea! I think picking the tips must be boring, painstaking work though. Sometimes the beautiful mounded rows of tea plants were growing right next to newly flooded rice fields. It was a truly Japanese countryside scene - rice and green tea!
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I came to Japan in 2003 to teach English. I lived in Shiga prefecture for 1 year, and it still holds a special place in my heart. I lived in Kyoto for 9 years, then moved to Machida, Tokyo in 2014 after meeting my Japanese partner. I love to take photos, and my Japan in Pictures Facebook page has some 40,000 followers. I have been the Regional Partner for Yamanashi Prefecture since 2014.I am enjoying exploring the prefectures around Tokyo (I like to get off the beaten track), and I hope the photos and stories I share will encourage more people to discover this wonderful country.