Tag Archives: diary

Diary: Picking up rice

One day in late October, we were invited by a relative to pick up a bag of freshly-harvested rice for a wedding gift. I love rolling around the area as there is such a mix of rice fields, houses, shinkansen tracks, tiny roads, medium hills, various scare crows and whatnot. 

rural and urban contexts are sorta fuzzy and blended in Japan #generalization

Anyhow, we met the nice relative lady, drank tea with her and told some stories about our honeymoon ramble and whatnot (the usual things about my country and experience in Japan), picked up the rice and well… evidence follows: 

Picking up a large sack of Okayama rice from wife’s mom’s cousin’s (or something…) field
Oh and here’s the bag of rice
grown here (or close by)

 

Collection: Journals, Notebooks, etc. (variety), vol. 5

Notebook: from Royal Tenenbaum’s / life admin notes and various musings, summer-autumn, 2019

Explaining the obvious: I fill notebooks/journals of poetry, notes and musings (as well as scrapjournals which contain paper ephemera) and then transcribe (which no editing), then stash them into old-timey suitcase, which usually live in a storage locker faraway from where i physically exist.

Journal: Moleskine accordion / poetry / stamps, summer 2018 (front)

I snap lil snaps of the cover before hibernation to remind myself of these lil tomes which remind me so much of where i was when the words were scribbled. 

Journal: Moleskine accordion / poetry / stamps, summer 2018 (back)

To prevent the snaps from vanishing into a folder (digital shoebox as it were), compilations ensue, placed into this archive for my reference, and for you to peek at if you have a notion.

Some of these have been shared previously somewhere maybe but who’s to say. Carry on.

Continue reading Collection: Journals, Notebooks, etc. (variety), vol. 5

Diary: Okayama Regular Life, spring-ish / ramen, friends, singing, coffees, shrine, farm, graves etc.

Dave visits a Café terrace at Night – at “the Market” for a special event (described below) – photo by Ryoko (van Gogh homage)

After all the friends came and went from the wedding festivities in April (including a hospital stay by one intrepid adventurer) and then the Emperor abdicated and new one enthroned, then we rambled through much of May to Toyama, Nagano, Niigata etc. seeing small museums, riding various trains, soaking in a few hot springs, visiting a few pals… oh then of course, doing all the paperwork and procedure for my zairyu card, national insurance and pension programs and setting up our little house with some 2nd hand furniture, a fresh shelf books and hooks and hangers… we set about just “normal life” here. 

Note: Indeed, indulged with a very practical maneouver to acquire a stack of books… this pile is primarily from Vancouver and Vancouver-related by Grant Lawrence, Aaron Chapman, Eve Lazarus, plus Marc Zegans and David Willis… i will document these and many others recently added to collection forthwith(ish). 

What follows are very mediocre snapshots to chronicle various normal-outings, non-events, day-to-day errands, and other otherwise insignificant actions. 

For the record, we live in Tsuchida neighbourhood outside of Okayama city (shi), the capital of Okayama prefecture (ken). A mix of old (pre-war) homes, new homes, rice fields. 20 mins by car or 30 minutes by the fantastic Uno Bus to Okayama Station. Easy to go to Kurashiki or Bizen or the inland sea

I’ve even tried to plant some garden boxes and various seeds for greens. Okaasan (mother) has a much better technique and diligence with gardening. 

Continue reading Diary: Okayama Regular Life, spring-ish / ramen, friends, singing, coffees, shrine, farm, graves etc.

Diary: Musings towards Uno + Smugglers book, provided Pyjamas, and Vancouver history

Before leaving Uo back to Tsuchida, found a ridiculous burger!

As it goes… I’m riding the Uno Bus heading to Uno to stay at Uno Port Inn near where magical wife is teaching a tree trimming workshop. Though to be clear, in Okayama, i switch to the Ryobi bus.

Agenda includes: local Hot Spring bath; giant wild boar made of used plastic trash; fancy coffee and card writing; and reading Grant Lawrence’s Dirty Windshields (about time rambling with rock n rollers: The Smugglers).

First though, a stop at post office to mail more wedding thank-you cards & dropping off 35mm film shot at goat farm (supervised by Kris Krüg).

Watched: Andrew McLuhan’s riff from The Inscriptorium (The McLuhan Institute) about Marshall & Eric McLuhan, James Joyce’s Finnegan’s Wake & Wyndham’s art.

Update: on the bus ride, I listened to BC Hall of Famer Nardwuar interview Eve Lazarus including a Vancouver history/culture name check explosion including Aaron Chapman, Colleen Hardwick, the Beatles, Chuck Davies and more more more. Esp enjoyed AC’s Tom Waits-esque spoken-song. 

coincidentally (if there is such a thing), buddy James shared a snap of Aleks (who was featured in True North Media House goodness) with the Hall o Famer (note: check out my coverage of his TEDx Van talk)… James says: It’s as good as getting a photo with the PM. A proud Canadian moment!

Also enjoyed recollections of “beatnik“ coffee/jazz lounge scene – Worth noting that Allen Ginsberg performed at at least one of these places and Sonny Terry and Brownie McGee recorded a legendary blues album at the Bunkhouse (which apparently “featured” topless waitresses).

Also, the post office mission was successful (including super sharp stamps) and letters are en route to several countries, the film developing project failed for the time being.

Now enjoying a matcha and jazz in a cool room.

Note: one great thing about rambling in Japan is hotels is pyjamas are provided. #handy Alas, smoking jackets usually aren’t (so packing Nepali red velvet vest).

Update: Stayed at Uno Port Inn which was a treat. Not fancy but they run a accommodation is a pleasant, comfy and unpretentious manner.  My review (added to Tripadvisor and Google Maps): 

Fantastic Location, Great Coffee, Excellent Staff

Location is fantastic with mere steps to ferry terminals and train station and bus stops plus lots of local art around. So handy for jumping off to art islands and/or getting to and from Okayama.

The staff was welcoming and very helpful. The lobby was chill and cozy and the patio was a treat.

The coffee is remarkable and the breakfast was very well prepared (especially nice on the patio).

Was just a quick one-night getaway (we live rather nearby) but made for a fun time. Note: The rooms are rather small but very functional and clean plus feature very nice sheets and pillows and Dr. Bronner’s soap in the bathroom!

Oh!: The folks at UNO Port Inn sent me a couple of snaps they took of yer ole pal me and asked for feedback and the ok to share on socials. Solid marketing / community building. Voila, snap!

Also: While we went out in search of dinner using the map provided by UNO, we found places either booked or closed… this worked out great as we wandered down an un-inviting arcade corridor and found the smallest okonomiyaki place run by an enjoyable old gal who loves dogs.

Finally: Uno and nearby islands Naoshima and neighbours are laden with public art and run a continuous bienalle of some sort. While i traveled across by ferry to Naoshima for a coffee, art walk and a hot springs soak, i won’t delay the click by foisting the relevant documentation now but rather share this remarkable fish made from sadly disposed of polluting nonsense plastic crap sitting on Uno port park area. There is often/usually a wild boar as well / or  but seems the inoshishi had the week off. 

Refuse plastic (and recycle if you can’t refuse but really refuse/avoid/replace as its such garbage!)

End of dispatch.

Mementos: Tottori Japan Life at Enokitake (mushroom) Farm etc

Mementos: Japan Enokitake farm: view entering the farm compound in Saji - note this photo was used in Japan Times in an article about changes in rural Japan
Mementos: Japan Enokitake farm: view entering the farm compound in Saji, Tottoria

Note: Above photo published in Japan Times article: Modernity and magical realism in rural Japan By JAMES HADFIELD

Story: Sometime around 1993, I ended up working as a mushroom farmhand (enokitake and shiitake) in a small mountain village called Saji in Tottori-ken (prefecture), Yazu-gun (county) .

Sometimes, i’d haul soggy Shittake logs around in the forest. The culture is injected as plugs into the wood and then grows from one log to another into meandering perpetuity

A sorta friend of friend of my brother was seeking a foreign worker (at the time, Japan’s economy was in a “bubble” with abundant wealth and no one wanted to do the crappy jobs it turns out). They would pay my airfare and so on, I had just finished a stint hitching and drifting around Europe and before the Grateful Dead tour and thought this would be an interesting adventure.

The turn off to the farm which was a warehouse sorta structure with a variety of indoor/outdoor-ish rooms and shelters with various equipments, storage, supplies etc.

Continue reading Mementos: Tottori Japan Life at Enokitake (mushroom) Farm etc

Collection: Journals (variety), vol. 3

classic Field Notes by Draplin Design Co.
classic Field Notes by Draplin Design Co. (orange)

Explaining the obvious: I fill notebooks/journals of poetry, notes and musings (as well as scrapjournals which contain paper ephemera) and then transcribe (which no editing), then stash them into old-timey suitcase, which usually live in a storage locker faraway from where i physically exist.

I snap lil snaps of the covers before their hibernation to remind myself of these tomes which in turn remind me of where i was when the words were scribbled.

To prevent the snaps from vanishing into a folder (digital shoebox as it were), compilations ensue -placed into the this archive for my reference, and for you to peek at if you have a notion.

map of identified location, origins forgotten
map of identified location, origins forgotten

Continue reading Collection: Journals (variety), vol. 3

Collection: Journals (variety), vol. 2

Journal: "Steel, Steal, Still, Stir me heart", 2014 (red)
Journal: Lost Life / notes, musings, ephemera, 2014 (“Steel, Steal, Still, Stir me heart”, red)

Explaining the obvious: I fill notebooks of poetry, notes and musings (as well as scrapjournals which contain paper ephemera) and then transcribe, then send them into old-timey suitcase which live in a storage locker faraway from where i physically exist.

I snap snaps of the cover before hibernation to remind myself of these lil tomes which remind me so much of where i was when the words were scribbled. To prevent the snaps from vanishing into a folder (digital shoebox as it were), compilations ensue, placed into the this archive for my reference and for you to peek at if you have a notion.

Journal: Lost Life / notes, musings, ephemera, 2013-4 (birdcard, red cover)
Journal: Lost Life / notes, musings, ephemera, 2013-4 (birdcard, red)

Continue reading Collection: Journals (variety), vol. 2

Collection: Journals (variety), vol. 1

Journal: Pokhara > Aqaba / poetry, 2017 (purple flower paper maché from Nepal cover)
Journal: Pokhara > Aqaba / poetry, 2017 (purple, flower / paper maché from Nepal)

Explaining the obvious: I fill notebooks of poetry, notes and musings (as well as scrapjournals which contain paper ephemera) and then transcribe, then send them into old-timey suitcase which live in a storage locker faraway from where i physically exist. I snap snaps of the cover before hibernation to remind myself of these lil tomes which remind me so much of where i was when the words were scribbled.

To prevent the snaps from vanishing into a folder (digital shoebox as it were), compilations ensue, placed into the this archive for my reference and for you to peek at if you have a notion.

Journal: Pokhara > Aqaba, 2017 (inside cover noting: Pokhara, Kathmandu, Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Muscat, Aqaba)
Journal: Pokhara > Aqaba, 2017 (inside cover noting: Pokhara, Kathmandu, Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Muscat, Aqaba)

Continue reading Collection: Journals (variety), vol. 1

Collection: Notebooks (variety, international) vol. 1

Collection: Variety of notebooks, 2014-2018
Collection: Variety of notebooks, 2014-2018
Notebook: Maritimes, 2017 / Tintin "le petit vingtiéme" cover
Notebook: Maritimes, 2017 / Tintin “le petit vingtiéme” cover

Continue reading Collection: Notebooks (variety, international) vol. 1

I am still,…

I am still, and here.

#wonder #grateful #healing #reinvention #quietish #freehugs