Mahjong isn’t really a popular game in Korea. Actually it’s not popular at all. People recognize the game when they hear it, or when they see the tiles, but it is very hard to find a person who actually plays unless they are Chinese or Japanese. I went to Seoul for a month this past July, and during my stay I tried to find out more about the riichi scene in Korea.
I heard that there were three places where you can play in Seoul, but I could only visit one of these which was a parlor called Jabajan (じゃばじゃん). It is a parlor, but unlike Japan you cannot play for money. In Korea gambling is forbidden in places where Korean citizens are allowed, and most of the customers at Jabajan were Koreans so there was no gambling going on. Continue reading
This past December just before new years, I had the chance to visit Takunori Kajimoto at his mahjong school in Tokyo. The place wasn’t his, but he was going and working there once every week. It was kinda far away from the center of Tokyo, about a 40 min. train ride towards Chiba, at a place called Funabashi (船橋).
I hadn’t seen Kajimoto for a long time and he is usually far away from Tokyo at the museum, so it was definitely worth my time going there. After struggling to find the address for maybe half an hour, I finally arrived right around 11 am and stayed there until around 10 pm when they closed.
Hi mahjongers all around the world. It’s Deniz from Turkey, the guy in charge of mahjong here. Luckily I can name myself that because our numbers here in Turkey don’t add up to much… Nice to be on board here on Osamuko. Glad to have joined in, I’m sure I will be able to entertain everyone with my first hand experiences around Japan over the course of last year. But that, I plan to do later. For now I got some better news. Continue reading