You’ll never know everything about anything, especially something you love. — Julia Child
I truly enjoy summer. Hot, sunny days inspire me. Here is my list of things I am planning to do. Will they all be finished — unlikely. Will I have fun trying — definitely.
- Walk for 45 minutes every morning.
- Transform the balcony to a comfortable living space. – Done
- Eat well.
- Read books for an hour every day.
- Write a professional white paper.
- Share photos and videos.
- Garden in Niagara on the Lake.
- Take a vacation.
- Develop a free iPad application. (Please suggest something.)
I’ll let y’all know how it goes.
I have been teaching myself elementary video editing. Here’s one of my early very short pieces.
April 24, 2011
It’s snowing. Spring has arrived in Toronto.
This is my favorite time of year; the one in which it is common to have several seasons in one day. On leaving the house this morning the streets were wet and clouds flew across the sky producing flashes of sunlight and blue sky. A cold wind followed me to the subway platform and was waiting for me a few stops later, now carrying snow.
By mid-afternoon the sun shone again and the temperature was well below freezing.
I spent the spring of 2010 in Japan. For five short weeks I travelled the Kansai (Osaka) region on trains and on foot. The plan was simple, collect material for blogs and essays to be written later in the year. I filled notebooks with observations of life in central Japan and tried out a few in mail to a friend who encouraged the whole endeavour.
Through the summer I worked on un-posted material, testing style, selecting and editing photos. In early autumn I returned to work and creative things slowed down a little, however, a year later I was ready to publish.
At five in the morning I received a text message from Naoko stating that had been an earthquake and she was okay. Given the frequent nature of earthquakes in our part of the country I knew this was something unusual. Just how unusual, I could not have begun to imagine. Everything changed.
With the new, frightening and still unfolding reality of life in Japan, my witty observations of cherry blossoms and department store sake counters suddenly seemed to belong to a bygone era; they will remain a memory of a happy time and cool spring days. Almost a month later I am still struggling to find words for Japan post-March 11, 2011.
The season is autumn. Morning frost, falling leaves and early sunsets confirm the spectacular summer of 2010 has passed.
After spending the summer learning new skills and considering the future I have returned to life as a computer programmer. I talked with family, friends, former colleagues and fellow job-seekers and received much varied and valuable advice for which I am very grateful. My new position allows me to be the new kid and wise old sage at the same time.
Traditionally, one thinks of autumn as the last season, but for me it is the beginning of a new phase of life, a time to return to familiar activities and learn new things. I am eager to face the challenges ahead.
It does not get much easier than this:
- Wash and cut slits into a tomato. I prefer the black-green ones but any tomato with rich flavour will do.
- Slice a soft cheese such as bocconcini into wedges and insert into tomato slits.
- Place on a plate with full flavoured greens like arugula and basil. Drizzle a little vinegar .
Preparation time: about two minutes.
Spring weather does not get any better than this. Cloudless sky, cool breeze and green rice fields with blue mountains in the distance. Naoko’s day off so we went to Osaka in the afternoon. Spent the time walking and sight-seeing.
Listened to a very good local punk rock band playing in front of JR Osaka Umeda station. Jeff, my God Son, a serious punk rocker, would approve.
In the evening we went to one of my favourite restaurants in Namba, 三間堂、 San Gen Dou. Take a look at the attached; it may appear to be a slushie in a box, but it is really Yuki Doke Zake, (melting snow sake.) Presented with a small dish of black sesame tofu (left), don’t believe what you learned in medical school about low temperatures slowing reactions, this innocent-looking treat will hit one like a Shinkansen on the fast track. A frozen glass is filled with very cold sake such that it overflows, filling the box which is also frozen. Almost instantly the sake — take your pick, dry or fruity — turns to ice. The challenge is to consume it without getting any on one’s kimono.
Wherever this note finds you, I hope it finds you well, J
Original note written April 25, 2010.