Wednesday, June 27, 2007

the end is near

Of puppyhood, that is. Grace-chan wa hotondo issai desu (little Grace is almost one year old) so I thought I'd capture one of her last puppy-crazy bursts, aka FRAPs ("frenetic random activity period" in dog expert speak). Or at least part of a great FRAP anyway: I had watched her for several minutes before the idea of grabbing the camera came to me.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

bloom thievery

are blooming
on the bush

in a tiny park
down the hill.

if I selfishly
snapped off
one bud,

would possession
of the slumberous scent

prevail over
my conscience?

Sunday, June 17, 2007

ripped from the shimbun

Just some stuff that caught my eye in the newspaper recently:

Reading the cultural listings, I was wishing we were in Kyoto this weekend to see a geisha/maiko (apprentice geisha) dance presentation. Individual pieces and a joint performance were followed by an opportunity to pay $250 extra to dine and chat with them after the show at local restaurants.

I also saw a story with a photo that I couldn't help noticing; a woman wearing some weird bulky mask over her eyes. Turns out that in Osaka recently they launched a head mounted display computer. As if it weren't bad enough to be stuck behind the texting-addicted masses who, with cell phones melded into their paws, amble ultra-slowly everywhere they go, clogging Japan's metro staircases and sidewalks.

Another article that engrossed me was by the chairman of the World Haiku Club who stumbled upon the life story and work of a local haijin (haiku poet) while traveling in Kyushu (southern Japan). This artist, Chogetsu Matsunaga, has lived her whole life in a small farming town near Nagasaki and only began writing haiku at the age of 64. Now 97 years old, she unfortunately gave up writing haiku in 1999 after suffering a stroke.

Here are three of her poems, including her first.

spring wind...
I put caps over
the watermelon seedlings

to the grave
which does not answer, I offered
my private words

searching for my late
late husband's eyes in the
sky of spring stars

Saturday, June 09, 2007

bits and bobs

Currently in progress: Aran's best anglo friend arrived last night for a 48-hour visit on his way to Thailand. I specify said pal's tongue because SeƱor Perfectly Trilingue recently realized that he has 3 best friends: one franco-, one anglo- and one hispano-phone. Needless to say, the boys are still sleeping.

Recently noted: Starbuck's has a new flavour of frappuccino here in Tokyo: azuki. While I am fond of sweet red bean paste in Japanese desserts (it's extremely popular), I heard that this frapp is terribly over-sweet and just weird.

Plans in the making: Looks like we'll be heading to Bali for a week next month. We were supposed to have visitors so Alain booked holidays. When our house guests bailed, we originally thought of Thailand or Vietnam, but then we saw the climate map (serious rainy monsoony floody crap + extreme heat) and decided to postpone those destinations. Bali's rainy season is in the fall.

G-dog update: This damn inu is shedding like a fiend. Yesterday I brushed a whole puppy's worth of fluffy white undercoat off of her, though I had done the same two days ago. I guess mama nature's telling us that the temperature will start climbing past 30 C pretty soon.

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