Another Thanksgiving

My grandchildren have  taken the seats at our Thanksgiving table, now vacated by our elders.  I no longer awaken on Thanksgiving morning to the sounds of my mother in the kitchen, up very early to prepare the feast for us, because she had worked too late the day before in the Elmwood Market grocery storeContinue reading “Another Thanksgiving”

Kiku: Understanding the Significance of the Chrysanthemum

White chrysanthemum before that perfect flower scissors hesitate.  Buson 1716-1784 A few days ago, I found my way to another celebration and exhibit of chrysanthemums (kiku) at a shrine in Tokyo.  Taken at a superficial level it was proof to me that when the Japanese decide to explore the limits of anything, it usually goes wayContinue reading “Kiku: Understanding the Significance of the Chrysanthemum”

I Like Ca(u)ndy Too!

It’s fun and tough to shop for our five granddaughters when we’re in Japan.  We try to find small transportable items that they’ll find intriguing and exciting and perk their curiosity about this place we visit so often. Two of my grandchildren were very specific about what they wanted me to bring back from ourContinue reading “I Like Ca(u)ndy Too!”

Heart Warming and Belly Filling

The hilly village of Ohara, in the northern precincts of Kyoto, is idyllic.  It’s one of the places that I must return to each time I come to Kyoto.  Its simple country farmhouses make a ring around a central area of fertile farmland growing rice and vegetables. At one time, this rural farm area grew mostContinue reading “Heart Warming and Belly Filling”

In Praise of Friendship

As many years as I’ve been coming to Japan, there are experiences to be had here that can only happen with the help of caring friends who have contacts and relationships that open doors that are not  available to the casual visitor. When our friend Masa invited us to spend the day with him atContinue reading “In Praise of Friendship”

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