Wednesday, April 30, 2014


The last day of April.  One third of the year has already passed.  I experienced many things during these four months.

It was a rainy day.

I went to the last yoga lesson this morning. 
And I went grocery shopping in the afternoon.
I felt very lucky because while I was out it did not rain but when I got home it started raining heavily.

Today I got the first birthday card from USA though my birthday is May 8.  And I got some birthday present offers from some mail order companies.  I like May very much.

Tuesday, April 29, 2014


Today is a national holiday called "Showa no hi (昭和の日)" literally means day of showa.  It used to be "Tenno tanjobi (天皇誕生日)" Emperor Showa's Birthday.  But it became "Midori no hi (みどりの日)" from 1989 to 2006 and "Showa no hi" from 2007.
This is usually a start of the Golden Week, but since today is Tuesday some companies started their holiday from last Saturday.
It was cloudy today.
I went to Shinjuku to see a movie "Amazing Spider-Man 2" in the morning.  There were some people standing in front of the ticket counter.  It was a nice movie.  It would be much fun if I saw it by 3D.  The ending after the end credit roll made us expect the third episode.  When I came out of the theater, there were so many people waiting.
Then I went to Yokohama to see another movie in the afternoon.  It is a Japanese movie "Thermae Romae II (テルマエ ロマエII)" which was also an interesting movie.  There were many people waiting for buying the ticket here too.
Both were happened to be second movies and I like both first and second movies respectively. 

Movie is a good choice on this cloudy holiday.

Monday, April 28, 2014


It was fine and warm.

I went to stretching exercise in the afternoon.  This is the last exercise for me because I will start working in Ikebukuro, Tokyo from May 7, one day before my birthday.  It will take about 2 hours and a half one way, about 5 hours in a day.  It's a long distance, and many people recommend me to move to Tokyo.  But to live in Tokyo costs a lot.  Therefore I need to think about what to do on the train.  Most of the time I think I can sit there.  I will check emails, listen to the news, and write blog.  Maybe I will study something new. 
What will you do if you have such a long commuting?



It was fine and warm.

I went to Akasaka, Tokyo to attend a one day seminar.   On my way there I happened to see my student on the train whom I have not seen for a long time.

The seminar started 11 AM and finished 7 PM or so.  8 hours is rather long but I did not feel it was long.  I arrived there before registration, therefore I could sit at the center of the second raw.  It was free of charge.  Those who bought a book "Breakthrough" and who are interested in the seminar were invited.  The instructor was the translator of the book.  There were many exercises during the seminar.  I learned many things and enjoyed the seminar very much.  I bought another book there.

Saturday, April 26, 2014


It was fine and warm today.

I went to a coffee shop which opened yesterday with my father in the morning.  We arrived there only 8 minutes after the opening time, but there were already full of people and we needed to wait for a while.  If you order something to drink by 11 AM, they offer bread and boiled egg as morning service without any additional charge.  For the first three days they provided a small gift too.

In the afternoon I went to Yokohama to attend a seminar organized by my friends.  After the seminar, we had dinner together.

Friday, April 25, 2014


It was fine and very warm.

In the afternoon I went to post office to mail some documents.  From this April the postage for postcard became yen 52 from yen 50 and for envelope yen 82 from yen 80 because of the raise of shohizei (消費税), consumption tax from 5% to 8%.  The design of yen 2 stamp is a rabbit.
Then I went to bank to transfer money.  The service fee used to be yen 105 but now it became yen 108.
These are things I feel the raise of consumption tax as a real thing.

Thursday, April 24, 2014


It was fine and very warm.

I took my father to hospital.  He needed to visit two departments.  One for removing the stitches from the surgery which he had last week, the other is once a month check up for internal medicine.
After that we went out for lunch.  Both of us chose the menu we had never asked.  When we got home, he became weak.  He had a high fever again.  So he has been in bed.  At night he became better.

I went to stretching exercise at night.  This was the last lesson for me because I will start a new job in May and come home late and cannot attend the lessons unfortunately.  I said good-bye to my instructor and some friends. To get something means to lose something else.

The US president Mr. Barack Obama has come to visit Japan as a state guest (国賓:kokuhin) since yesterday and spent busy schedule.  I hope he will have a good time in Japan.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014


It was fine.

I went to Yoga lesson in the morning, then went to Yokohama to be a kimono model in the afternoon.  There I happened to see three friends.  The makeup artist was the same person who did when I became a model for the magazine last fall.  She said she was so glad to see my pictures in the magazine because she took care of me at that time.  I am happy to hear that.
I think makeup artists and beauticians are very nice professions because they make women beautiful, which makes them much happier.
Today I wore homongi (訪問着), formal wear with a special order-made obi (帯, sash).  It is coordinated with a bag. There is nothing same.  These are the only one products in the world.
After taking model pictures, I enjoyed trying on many different kimonos.
Then I went to see a Japanese movie "Kamisama no karute 2 ( 神様のカルテ 2)" meaning God's carte 2.  I did not go to see the Part I at the theater but watched it on TV this year.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014


It was fine in the morning but rainy in the afternoon.
I stayed at home all day long.

I did not do any big things but did some small things.

Today I got a recipe of simmered chicken wings from Cook Pad.  It was so easy that I tried to cook it.  It uses only three seasoning, Japanese sake, mirin (みりん: sweet sake for seasoning), and soy sauce.  I made a half volume of the recipe.  It was very tasty. 

Monday, April 21, 2014


It was a cold rainy day again.

I went to stretching exercise in the afternoon.

Today I finished reading a book which I bought yesterday at the venue of Mr. Ken Honda's seminar.  Its title is "Wakuwaku suru koto ga jinsei ni okane wo tsuretekuru! (ワクワクすることが人生にお金を連れてくる!)" which means "What makes you excited bring money to your life." What makes you excited?  For me, maybe to travel abroad or to communicate with foreigners or to be a bridge between Japan and foreign countries.  That is something related with other countries. Maybe English is the key for me.
There was a gift for the readers which we can get by accessing the given URL.  I think he is a really generous person.

Sunday, April 20, 2014


It is a cold cloudy & rainy day.

I went to Yurakucho to attend a seminar of Mr. Ken Honda who is a famous million seller writer.  He used to live in Boca Raton, Florida.  We happen to have a mutual friend in Delray Beach, Florida.
Today's seminar is a memorial one of publishing the latest book in this month.  The title of the book is "Kanemochi zo san, binbo zo san (金持ちゾウさん、貧乏ゾウさん)" meaning 'Rich elephant, poor elephant."  It was an interesting book.
This is the second time for me to attend his lecture this year. It was a nice one.

Before going there, I went to see a movie, "Saving Mr. Banks."  Its Japanese title "Walt Disney no yakusoku ( ウォルト・ディズニーの約束) " is quite different because it means "The promise of Walt Disney." It was also a nice movie.

Saturday, April 19, 2014


It was cloudy in the daytime, rainy and cold at night.
I went to attend a seminar at Shinjuku in the afternoon and watched a movie "Captain America" which was released today later.  Then I met my supervisor for dinner.

Friday, April 18, 2014


It was a cold rainy day.

I took my father to hospital to check the condition of the surgery.  It was fine.

The best thing to do while waiting is to solve sudoku for me because the usage of cellphones is prohibited in the hospital.  The other day I did not bring it but a thin book and finished reading soon.  Since we had to wait for a long time, I felt wasting time without doing anything but falling asleep.  So yesterday I brought the sudoku magazine which I bought when I went to Hawaii and Thailand & Cambodia around this time last year.  During the trip I could not finish the book.  So I still use it.  My American Host Mother also loves sudoku and every night she tried to solve them before going to bed.  I think it is good for the brain too.

We went out for lunch and shopping later.


Thursday, April 17, 2014


It was fine and warm but could not see the beautiful sunset.

I took my father to the hospital to have funryu (粉瘤), atheroma taken out from the chest around noon.  My brother performed the operation.  It took only 20 minutes or so.

After that my father and I went out for lunch and shopping.

I went to tea lesson in the afternoon.  There I heard that one of the pupils passed away by kumomakuka shukketsu (くも膜下出血), subarachnoid bleeding last month at the age of 68.  I have not seen her more than one year, but she was always so active that I was so surprised to hear the news.

At night I went to stretching lesson. 

Wednesday, April 16, 2014


It was fine and warm at first but cloudy later.

I went to Yoga lesson in the morning.   There were only 5 pupils today.

My friend posted a picture of the Diamond Fuji on Facebook.  I hoped to see it from my house this evening, but unfortunately it was cloudy and I could not see it.  There
are two chances a year but I have never seen it before.  I hope to see it someday and take the beautiful pictures.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014


It was fine and warm like May today.

There was a visitor in the morning.   Then I went to shrine, grocery shopping, and banks.

They say there was kaiki gesshoku (皆既月食) the total eclipse of the moon in the USA.  And it is called as the  Blood Moon because it looks red.  Have you seen it?
In Japan you can see it on October 8 this year.

Now we can see the beautiful full moon in Japan.


It was fine, and now the Moon with the Mars looks very beautiful.

I got up early and went to Ikebukuro (池袋) to take physical examination.  It finished earlier than expected therefore I went to Yurakucho (有楽町) to see a movie "The Secret Life of Walter Mitty."  Its Japanese title was just "Life."  When I saw preview, I did not have interest so much, but it was a nice movie.  It reminded me of my wish to go to Iceland.
These days "daydreaming" is very common.  For example, NHK's morning drama "Hanako and Anne (花子とアン)" is dealing with "Anne of Green Gables" and its translator.  Both of them like to daydream.  The movie I watched last Saturday is also dealt with daydreaming.  And this movie also dealt with daydreaming. 
In the afternoon I attended a seminar and got to know two lecturers.
In the evening I went to Shinjuku (新宿) to measure AGE and watch another movie "The Wolf of Wall Street." 

Sunday, April 13, 2014


It was cloudy.

I went to Yoga lesson for an hour in the afternoon.  There were many pupils today.  After that  I went to the training room to practice for two hours.   There were many people there too and I had to wait for the machine.


It was fine.

I went to see a movie in Yokohama in the morning. Then I went to Kannai to attend a monthly meeting after visiting a shrine and a spring festival near the stadium in the afternoon.  There were many beautiful tulips.
At night I attended the meeting and party of the high school reunion organizers at night.  It was fun.

Friday, April 11, 2014


It was fine but cool in the evening.

There was a wake of the neighborhood in the evening.  The sutra sounded familiar to me, and when I got home I knew they also belong to the same sect, Jodo shinshu (浄土真宗).  However there was something new to me.  When we go to wake or funeral and come back home, we purify ourselves by salt.  Usually as a thanks gift for attending the ceremony, they give something to the visitors such as handkerchief or sugar with a card of gratitude and the small package of salt.  However today salt was not included.
Instead there was a memo saying "We do not use kiyomejio (清め塩), purifying salt.  In Jodo shinshu sect we do not scatter salt to purify foulness.  In Buddhism death is never accepted as foulness.  We accept as "death is also ourselves" and to live our best is the way of living as a human being. "  For me using purifying by salt before entering house is a custom.  So I did it with regular house salt. 
Are there any rituals in your culture at the wake or funeral?

Thursday, April 10, 2014


It was fine and warm like May again.

There were many things today.  I took my father to the hospital and barbershop in the morning.
I went to tea lesson in the afternoon.  There were three pupils today.  We used tabidansu (旅箪笥), the traveling shelf again.  We learned how to use it outside.  Today's sweet looked like kabuto (兜), helmet.  But its name was senjin no homare (先陣の誉),  the honor of the vanguard.  Three of us made tea for the other two again.
After the lesson I went shopping and the car dealer to pick up the thing I ordered yesterday.
In the evening I went to stretching exercise.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014


It was fine and warm like May today.

I went to Yoga lesson in the morning.  There were only five pupils today.
In the afternoon I went to grocery shopping and the car dealer.

Support of Windows XP is over today.  I hope to buy new PCs soon.

I have just watched interesting TV program.  To attract foreign visitors there is a lunch course to experience making sushi by themselves.  They say it started to increase lunch time customers.  There will be many attempts to welcome foreigners by the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014


It was fine and warm today.

I took my father to the three departments of the hospital.  He only had a reservation.  We need to make two there.  We went there around 10:30 AM and finished around 4:30 PM.  We could not go out for lunch.  The cherry blossoms were so beautiful there
 and on the way too.
I read a book while waiting, and I regret not to bring more.

Monday, April 7, 2014


It was fine.

It was the first day of the schools this year, and there were entrance ceremonies here and there.  There were still beautiful cherry blossoms.  They must have taken beautiful pictures.

In the morning I visited 7 houses to distribute city papers and other stuff, and collected community charges.  I could see 4 people.  So I need to visit three household again.

In the afternoon I went to stretching.  This was the first class on Monday.  It was rather cool in the room though there were more than 25 women.  We practiced nearly two hours.


Sunday, April 6, 2014


It was fine in the morning but rained in the afternoon and it was very cold like winter.

I went to pelvis adjusting yoga.  Until March the course name was refreshing yoga.  The difference was we used the band today.  After 1 hour lesson I used the training room.  There were new machines.  I have practiced for 2 hours.

At night I have a meeting for the community activity.  There are 8 groups in our community and for two years I am the representative of the group 7.  And we have once a month meeting on the first Sunday night.


It was fine in the day time but started raining heavily at night.

I went to Shinjuku to attend a monthly meeting.  Then I went to a bookstore to buy some books which I have been interested in for a while.

In the evening I had another meeting and dinner.  There were 14 people today.  Two were new to me.  After the meeting I tried "Thermie" for the first time.  It was a little bit different from what I had imagined.  We had once a month meeting.  But it seemed there were many changes during this past month.  We had a fun time to eat and chat.

Friday, April 4, 2014


It was fine.

I stayed at home, tried to elaborate my composition about the memory of the 44th Peace Boat Cruise and 10 years after that again and again.  It's been 10 years since I circumnavigated by Peace Boat.  Every year some of the passengers got together to have a reunion.  And this is the 10th year anniversary and  will be the last trip among them.  I have never attended the tour, but I was invited to write about the essay.  I wrote it before, but today I tried to change some contents after reading my 10 nen nikki (10年日記), 10 year diary and "my book of 2004" which is one year diary.  To keep diary is very nice to remind something.  I think it is a gift to myself.  I have been writing 10 years diary since 2001 when the 21st century started.  So this is the 14th year.  I recommend you to use 10 years diary.

Thursday, April 3, 2014


It was a cold rainy day.

I went to tea lesson in the afternoon.  I was the first and two came a little bit later. Each one of us made two bowls of tea for each other.  We used tabidansu (旅箪笥), traveling shelf.  It is usually used outside when we go to see cherry blossoms or something.

At night I went to stretching exercise.  Today was the first day of the year. 

Wednesday, April 2, 2014


It was fine. 

I went to yoga lesson in the morning.  They say the management company of the gymnasium has been changed since April 1 and everything even cleaning kits were changed.  I have been to small ball exercise on Monday nights, but the new schedule has not been decided because every Monday is closed there.

There was the final match of the 86th senbatsu (センバツ) National High School Baseball Invitational Tournament.  Ryukokudaiheian (龍谷大平安) from Kyoto became the champion for the first time after 38th participation.  Congratulations!


It was fine and warm.  I went to the shrine and then to the station to see the cherry blossoms.  They were full in bloom and looked very beautiful.

A new month has started.  April is shigatsu (四月), the fourth month and uzuki (卯月) in Japanese.   It is the start of the new fiscal year and school year.

From today the consumption tax became 8%.  It's been 17 years since it became 5% from 3% in 1997.  5% was easy to calculate but it will need much effort to do it with 8% for a while.