Showing posts from September, 2013


So, you remember those days on the beach that you wished would go on forever, when the weather was perfect; not too hot, not too cold, when the water was likewise, when you had the whole place to yourselves, when there just weren't enough minutes to squeeze in all the things you wanted to do, when you played until the sun had gone down and there was barely enough light left for you to find your sandals and pack up your bucket and spade?

Of course we remember it; it was just yesterday!

Aruite mo, aruite mo

So, there's a park near me that's sandwiched between an elementary school and a day-care centre. In the course of any day, it is frequented by members of each institution. The kids, just starting out in life and full of noise and energy, call here on their way home from school. The seniors are calling in as often as they can; to walk, to play ground golf with their old, old friends, or just to sit awhile and enjoy the autumn sun... before they move on to their final destination, just up the hill.

I have enough noise and energy in my home life so, on my stroll yesterday, I was hoping to meet a few of the seniors before they headed out, so to speak.

Duty free duty

So, yesterday I spent the day in the airport. I wasn't travelling anywhere (except to the airport and back, of course), nor was I plane-spotting, except in a very literally and casual way ('Oh look, there's one.' 'What one is it?' 'It's a white and silver one.' 'Oh.').

Having said that, I was most definitely people-spotting. I was there long enough to notice the subtle shifts in average customer profiles that almost imperceptibly change with the flow of time; the busy people flying in early for a weekend in town, the holidaymakers heading somewhere exotic for the long weekend; the families finding lots to keep there wide-eyed little ones stimulated, the shoppers and dinners checking out something a little different, the weary long-haulers filling in their layover with some pretty hard drinking, and the list goes on... 

As it happens though, I was working, which on this occasion, involved secret shopping for 10 hours in about 20 locations. Now,…

Rural oasis

So, we were out in Nishi Shiroi for the day. My eldest was playing in a tennis tournament at West Green Tennis Club (eventually knocked out in the quarters, fact fans). So in a vain quest to get out of the heat, me and the boy headed across the stream and into the woods. As usual, I was looking for something to photograph (and of course, somewhere to photograph Haruki), and  also as usual, he was looking for something to catch - today it was grasshoppers. He's spectacularly good at this, which makes him very much the 'Master', and not the 'Grasshopper', I think.

We found loads of grasshoppers, wasps, dragonflies, butterflies, birds, and a strange camp fella walking his dog. We also found a great little wayside temple, which we had to ourselves, and we stumbled across the huge JRA Horse Racing School, which I'd been told is round those parts. You never think of such a place existing really, do you? But of course, both jockeys and stable hands have got to learn th…