Anyone familiar with Accessible Japan has likely enjoyed one of Dr. Michael Gillan Peckitt’s excellent posts from his Notes from the Obstacle Course series. Dr. Peckitt received his PhD in Philosophy from the University of Hull and now lectures at Osaka University.  His left-sided spastic hemiplegic cerebral palsy and epilepsy have enabled him to see Japan in a way many others cannot.

The Chrysanthemum and the Stick book coverFollowing his first book, Gaijin Story, Dr. Peckitt continues his observations in The Chrysanthemum and the Stick. From insights into the psychology of giving up your seat to a disabled rider on a train, to the history of the tenji blocks used by person’s with visual impairments, Dr. Peckitt shares his thoughts and experiences in an approachable yet deeply philosophical way.  He even offers an explanation of why his series is called Notes from the Obstacle Course – and it may not be what you would expect!

Personally, what I appreciate the most is Dr. Peckitt’s honesty.  He does not shy away from sharing the good and bad – from getting pushed in a wheelchair by a cute department store employee to save her from being yelled at by her boss, to having young kids yell “disabled!” and run away.  It gives a real glimpse into life here in Japan for those with disabilities.

The ebook is available at Amazon and is cheaper than a cup of coffee or a cheeseburger (why a cheeseburger? Read the book to find out!) so you have no reason to not pick it up!  You can purchase it via this link: The Chrysanthemum and the Stick. You can keep up with Dr. Peckitt on our blog or on his site, ‘The Limping Philosopher’ ( and on Twitter @Peckitt.

New Blog Post: A visit to Japan with My Assistance Dog Nixon
Join Nina Smith & her assistance dog Nixon on their Tokyo adventure during cherry blossom season, navigating public transport, attractions & more.

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A collage of pictures of Assistance Dog Nixon

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