More about Moe

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More about Moe

Here’s a personal story how I became a foodie writer. If you are interested!

Childhood in Japan

Mom often told us “Do not waste your food”.
As she cooked everything well, it was not difficult for me to eat everything on my plate.
So, I have grown up with a good appetite. In my school days, classmates used to call me “big eater”. College friends made jokes on my large stomach as “bottomless pond”.
Those were not the prettiest nicknames, but thanks to them, I got to start an interesting quest afterwards.

Encountering the book on food for living

When I was 16 years old, I read a book called “Mono Kuu Hitobito (What People Eat)” by a Japanese author Yo Henmi. The book was about what people, who are living with poverty in different countries, eat. I was moved by stories of poor men who flock around scraps of neighbour’s wedding feast in Bangladesh and an old woman who lives on vegetables from her garden affected by Chernobyl accident.
Besides being shocked by those stories, I got fascinated by how humans can be fearless to maintain their lives. I felt that eating, indeed, is an act of pursuing life. And, I got interested in people overseas, how they live, and what they eat.

Travelling around and studying in Scotland

Since college, I started to travel. In Ethiopia, I learned that people eat Injera, sour flat bread made from fermented grain. And in a Himalayan village in Nepal, I learnt that fresh Buffalo milk tastes just like mozzarella. Still, my desire for learning the lives of foreign countries.

After college, while I was working in Tokyo for some years, I started to applying for universities abroad. Then, I got a chance to study in Edinburgh, Scotland. So I quit my job and flew out of Japan.
I joined a postgraduate course for public health. It’s a field of study that deals with different health issues in different countries around the world.

At first glance, the city of Edinburgh was just pretty and peaceful, surrounded by miles of hills where hairy cows graze. However, I was told in the class that a high rate of heart disease was the main health concern here. The reason for this is a diet high in sweets and fried foods.
In fact, I was overwhelmed by the variety of biscuits and chocolates, in big packages and with low prices in supermarket shelves. Here, social classes and inequalities prevail. And the weather is cold and harsh. That leads starved people with lower income eat more oil, and more sugar.
It made me realise that our dietary habits largely depends on where we live, which in turn impacts our health, and how much food matters.

Working on farms

As I travelled, I became more interested in how our foods are produced. After completing my studies in Edinburgh, I volunteered on farms in Scotland and France and also worked for an organic vegetable producer in Japan. Working on three farms for some months was not enough to give me a complete picture of food production, but it was enough to give me an idea of the process before we get the vegetables from the supermarket shelves. Farmers (especially small/middle scale) are literally running around, soaked with rains, sweats and dirts, to protect their produces.
I told myself to always think about what’s behind the consumerism, that I benefit from.

And, now

I don’t think I’ll go for a long journey again. I feel I saw enough, and the world gave me much.
Berlin is where I live for a while. Back in the city life. But, I would not forget what I have seen on my travels.
Wherever you live in the world, whatever the circumstances, eating is a moment when people feel peace and happiness. And I think it should continue to be so.
I hope that through writing on something as familiar as food, I can inspire readers to be curious, and feel connected with places and people they don’t know.

Thanks for reading😋

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大学院では、世界の国ごとに異なる健康問題について考える、Public Health(公衆衛生学)という分野を学んだ。






Thanks for reading😋

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