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Showing posts from August, 2015

Shimoda: rain, history, sun and crabs

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So, we managed to get away for a few days for our annual family trip down the Izu Peninsula to Shimoda. It's a lovely spot that we go to; cliff-top hotel, great food, cool pool, elevator to the beautiful sandy beaches with perfect 1-2 metre surf. I love it, the missus loves it, and most importantly, the kids love it.

Due to a typhoon passing through west Japan, the weather this year was a little mixed. The evening we arrived and the whole of the following morning was rainy. The sun was finally to make its mark just in time for some body-boarding before the beach closed. The second day, in marked contrast, was beautiful.

We didn't waste the rainy morning though, in fact, thanks to Hana's homework assignment, we went on a little historical research tour. Shimoda is famous as being where Japan ended their international seclusion when they signed a treaty of amity and commerce with the American Commodore Perry. So we headed down to Perry Road which winds its pretty way from the …

We miss you, Matey

Death, in a simple way, clear to all, is final. The finality of it marks out our lives with its heavy rhythm and in time, each and every one of us feels the weight of its beat. At times, it’ll be little more than a rumble; a quivering, that makes us pause and look up from our life (we see nothing unexpected… a man, phone in hand, walking his dog…the afternoon sunlight shafting through the poplars and across the car park…someone reversing into a tiny spot…birdsong), think about giving our mum a call, or picking up something sweet for dinner on the way home. At other times, the shock of its sudden coming blasts us from our life trance, and shakes us down. Its sonorous boom stops us, well, dead.

When someone has gone, that is the last we shall see of them, there’s no denying it. And yet, beyond the deceased themselves, it also cannot be denied that death is not the end. We attempt to push aside any loss we might feel with glibness – he had a good innings, one out, one in, she’s at peace …

Sunset: red and gold

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So, although my trip was everything it was intended to be - battery-recharging, moment-taking, stress-diffusing relaxation - the weather in general wasn't really up to snuff. The nearby typhoon put paid to that. Not strictly an issue with me in general, being one of those people who just likes weather (I mean, where's the challenge in pitting yourself against the element?), but I'm also one of those people who likes sunsets - you may have noticed.

Luckily about 2 hours before the sun went down on my trip, the clouds finally dispersed and gave me something of a reward for my patience; a beautiful golden sunset.