Tuesday, May 31
Dreaming in green
So now that we get to stay, we have to fulfill all those promises we made, the little IOUs to the Universe in exchange for the three-year visa that lines Colette's passport.
One of the main promises I kept making was to be more awake and aware. Obviously our life here is very fragile so I need to pay constant attention. I really, truly love Japan. I love the quiet, the attention to detail, the weeds left to grow everywhere, the glass bells and cicadas in the summertime. Even the soft and sour parts of Japan can fit into my heart. Yet, paying attention includes paying attention to my own needs, as well as appreciating my environment.
And one thing that I have been craving is wildness. Japan is a very wild country, though most might not consider it to be so. Step outside of the city limits and you will probably be in the mountains or standing in a rice field. For my nature loving family, living in the concretescape that is Nagoya can be a little soul-numbing. Don't get me wrong, Nagoya is a comfortable city, and less urban than Tokyo, Osaka, and even Fukuoka. But it is a city nonetheless. Living here can make you a little dazed, it can make trekking outside of the city limits seem troublesome. For us, a lot of the problem is based around scheduling. It is rare that all of us are free for explorations on the same day. So on Monday after our triumph at immigration, realizing my luck in having all three kids at the same time, we headed out of Nagoya a bit to see what a forest park looked like.
Upon arriving, we were reminded how everything is closed on Mondays in Japan, including forest parks.
So we ended up taking a lovely, albeit windswept, stroll around a small lake. Though no hike, it was such a good, sunshiny walk. We saw our first tanbo (dragonfly) of the season, along with skinks, ladybugs, water striders, and even a muskrat. Being outdoors with the kids (coupled with the release from the heaviness of worry I had been toting around for a few weeks) made it really a perfect afternoon. So perfect in fact, that I have decided to spend every chance we can going outside of the limits, into the unknown. Though Sebastian does request that we bring the nets next time, for as he said, "If I had known there were going to be insects, I would have been better prepared".