Outdoors and Nature
Actually, fall colors are almost gone to be replaced by bare branches. We’re still enjoying the last warm spell before Winter sets in. They say Hachioji is cold. This is our first year in this part of Tokyo; it hope it’s not so bad. Then again, we’re looking forward to taking our kids sledding this year — we’ve got great hills nearby!
My favorite photo from that day (see previous posts). Now that I think about it, maybe a “flower child” is an appropriate image the day after North Korea tested a nuclear bomb. Here’s to simple days, the beauty around us, and the hope of a child.
Jesus said… “Let the children alone, don’t prevent them from coming to me. God’s kingdom is made up of people like these.” (Matthew 19:14, The Message)
These are five of the older kids racing. The went in a circle around floating markers in the water (about 100m total). It looks serious (well, I suppose it is), but it was pretty funny to watch. All five kayaks have to go around a floating marker at the same time, so some kids naturally end up with an advantage after that all sorts out. They all know a variety of strokes, though, and it’s amazing to watch them control the kayaks even when they’re all bumping each other.
I took this shot at Sai Ko (lake) last weekend. There was a row of seemingly abandoned buses near our campsite lined up pointing toward the lake. Why?? I asked one man, and he thought they’d been placed there for shelter in case of strong rain. Another person told me that “classic buses” have been intentionally deposited all around the lake — as an artistic statement by some Japanese Cristo.
This evening Hitomi told me a story about Reia. Reia is tough, in her own way, but overall she’s a gentle personality. She has to learn how to handle people who are naturally more aggressive. One of the girls in her class is that way. Hitomi asked Reia what she does when “Hanako” is over-bearing. Reia said that the other day “Hanako” was pushing her around, so Reia told her:
“Nakama deshou! Yowai kedo.” That means, “We’re both ‘in together/on the same team’ (friends) okay! But I’m weak.”
The first part is right on. Then Reia intended to say, “But I’m a more gentle/soft type than you.” Unfortunately, “yowai kedo” simply means, “But I’m weak.”
It probably just went over the other girl’s head anyway. Putting aside whether the second part of her response was wise (correctly stated or not), we both gave her an “A” for effort and appreciate her level of self-awareness.… Keep Reading
I love this shot. Last weekend we attended an annual family camp hosted by my daughters’ preschool (and the related outdoors school for elementary kids). We drove about two hours to get to there. Shortly after arriving, I found myself peacefully enjoying the moment. It’s a beautiful spot. Actually, it was crowded with tents, but they were the tents of friends. I felt relaxed and concluded it was well worth the drive and cost of getting there.
Later that evening we had a potluck. I privately wondered if some American had influenced the Sensei in the past, because I believe the “potluck dinner” is an import. But it was like no other potluck I’ve attended before. All the families sat at their own tables and put their dish in front of them. Then everyone took his/her plate and circulated to the other tables. It’s quite interesting going to a table where a family is still sitting (everyone didn’t get up all at once) and take some of their food right in front of them. Of course, this resulted in numerous short conversations. One family made gyoza stuffed with kimchi and natto! I dislike natto, but those gyoza tasted great. The sensei had a pan of stovetop lasagna made with eggroll wrappers instead of noodles.… Keep Reading