Japan is…

(This post is unrelated to nationalism, activism, buddhism or martyrism.)

I study society by asking Google simple questions. One day I felt like finding out what other people think of this country. Well look what I found…

Search result screenshot.

None bothered me except the 3rd. Feeling lucky? You bet! Don’t worry though, ’cause I was just wondering that myself.
In fact I was thinking, maybe that’s the reason why I own a surfboard, although originally the purchase was made for something else.

My neighborhood guys weren’t so happy…

Sinking? What do you mean sinking??
We aren’t sinking, are we sinking?

A temple wood carving.

Calm down fella, your face’s all red. At our age you may want to start winding down, loosen your knuckle and exude the serenity of divine calm…

A temple wood carving.

Oh quiet you pastel-palmed you, and your fuzzy rosy cloud of calmness you’ve been standing in for last 700yrs. At this point nothing can shock you awake, not even a dip in the salt water…

But why, why do they think we are….sinking?

Don’t tell me we are sinking…don’t sink…

A temple wood carving.

-end of dialogue-

As 311 approaches for the second time since the big day, I wanted to clear some air in regard to our living on the edge of the seismic-atomic goings-on.

I heard talks online speculating on Japanese, that we are either in denial, naively misinformed, or staying put due impoverishment. I also noticed some of you are concerned but too polite to come out and ask (thank you for thinking of us). While I surely have no answers to any of the above, why not offer you my humble 5 yen that I think have earned through living on the east half of the island, not too close to get scorched but close enough to feel the fire.

From what I’ve seen and heard in real life, I can safely say everyone’s taking calculated risks, opposed to passively waiting for a direction. They seem to know what they want, what they can handle – emotionally/psychologically, especially – and ways to find the “path of least resistance” , so to speak, in accordance. Without being vocal about what that is, mostly out of consideration for each other – as choices we’re having to make in relation to our new state of being could be highly personal, and often of a delicate variety.

We who live in the nation, may be in this together, but what I keep noticing is the strength, perhaps at deeply hidden core of each, to stand in one’s destiny alone.
And choose the path, suited only for the individual. People know themselves, and we are all so different. Although part so alike, still so different.

Now back to the temple where the above guys reside. The place was built in Heian era, been 900+ years and counting. Sit sturdy on bedrock, built to last. Located in nondescript rural hillside, a nearly secret haven for this gem. Hazard of the hood being wild boars. Edible yes, but often unfriendly and very genki.
The Head Priest, friendly, was the one crafted all the candle holders. They were for the New Year’s eve count down event, the countless candles lighting the temple’s narrow pathways, flickering against the tall black trees in the background.

A bamboo candle holder.
A temple wood carving.
A bamboo candle holders.

So this was my first travel guide post. You will have a hard time finding a place like this one without some helpful guide going on and on about everything that’s inviting. Oh, my pleasure, stay tuned for more.

By the way, I heard Japan is about the size of the state of California, though haven’t found the time to confirm with Google about it.

Edited on January 21, 2015.

2 thoughts on “Japan is…

  1. a warm welcome back, Yuko!

    …sometimes life is stranger than fiction – and we have no choice than to deal with it –
    we can’t put it aside and take another one ( perhaps is something else when you believe in reincarnation :-))

    in these exceptional circumstances i often feel like standing beside myself and observing the situation as a non-participant – to bring this observer and the me together again, bit by bit, often takes a long time.

    in march 2 years ago i became aware that japan isn’t just an island somewhere in the pacific ocean, that i’m very interested in but nonethless is thousands of miles away – but it’s also the home of Yuko,
    a person i really appreciate just from these little cuttings from her life / art in her blogs.
    i know lot’s of people lost their life, lost their relatives, lost their home – but it’s you who gave this inconceivable disaster a face for me.
    and the whole mess with this situation is, that it has become a never-ending-story – and this makes it so surreal and so difficult to deal with. normally when something monstrous happens there is a moment when it’s “over” and you can begin to “clean up” …

    i wish you enough energy to deal with that situation and that it may not absorb your life.
    be sure, monday there will be a burning candle in our house too.

    lots of love, eve

    and this is what google suggests in switzerland for your society study:
    look at the second entry and forget the rest!

    1. Hello Eve, welcome to my new blog!!

      …and as always, thank you so much for your thoughtful comment.

      Today we are having a warm, sunny spring day with apricot blossoms, ceder pollens and some chirping birds. The nature is right on schedule, disaster or not, it doesn’t slack on delivering the song of Life or something like that.

      Japan (and myself too) thanks you, by the way, for the screenshot. It cheered the island up some ;)

      Happy spring to you,

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