Category Archives: This & That

A Weekend in Yonezawa, Yamagata

Cloud streaks caught the setting sun and bathed the valley in soft light as I disembarked from the Shinkansen at Yonezawa Station on a late October Friday afternoon. The crisp air was faintly redolent with smoke–like incense–as farmers had burned … Continue reading

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A Period of Technical Difficulties

It has been a while. Longer than I’d hoped. After an eventful weekend in the Japanese countryside followed by jaunts to distant areas of Japan and several hours on trains to write about the adventures, the computer got balky. Photos … Continue reading

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Halloween Karaoke Party

What do you dress as when you’ve unexpectedly been invited to a Halloween karaoke party and you don’t want to spend big bucks on a costume? I’d bought a cheap wig in Tokyo but left it behind as it was … Continue reading

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The Flow of Time: DESIGNART TOKYO 2018

October moves into its final week and I am more acutely aware of the flow of time as my stay here is limited to the end of November. There are only so many days until Christmas, and in what will … Continue reading

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When Everything Claps

In Plautdietsch or Low German, a language used among Mennonites for more than 500 years, there’s a saying: Daut klaupt aules. Meaning everything claps. In English we say everything clicks to describe such a state of convergence. Monday’s International Class … Continue reading

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Showers and Blessings

Saturday evening I was about to go out for another round of exploring DESIGNART TOKYO 2018 when thundershowers hit the city. Instead, with soft jazz streaming I poured the wine, laid out the bread and cheese, and pulled out the … Continue reading

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Week One: Valuable Lessons

The first week of ikebana lessons started well; however, the challenge has been huge. By Thursday of the first week I was punch-exhausted from all that jetlag, settling into my apartment and resuming classes entailed. To complicate matters, the steel grass … Continue reading

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Ikebana: Revised Goals and Aspirations

  Before resuming my ikebana studies at Sogetsu Kaikan, I had determined to do things a little differently this time. Last winter there were various challenges inherent in the move to Tokyo competing for my attention. As a result I … Continue reading

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Three Weeks to Takeoff

The Fall 2018 issue of PostScript: The Magazine for Retired Educators containing my article on last year’s ikebana studies in Tokyo arrived in the mail this week. The editorial team did a particularly fine job of the layout and thanks … Continue reading

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The Right Response

Due to a milestone birthday earlier this year, on August 2 I enjoyed my first sailing on BC Ferries free of charge. When I pulled up to the ticket booth I announced the fact as I handed over my credit … Continue reading

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