Tag Archives: kura

Diary: Tsuchida station grounds projects, various

Busy around the house, now the construction is “done”, doing some garden, yard, landscape, and kura/naya jobs… the glorious mundanity of the tiny things which make all the difference. Be prepared, nothing *shocking* or excited, just the usual days.

Hemp cloth wrapped on shelves made from wedding dais / under the dust cover is 1982ish Yamaha GT-2000 turntable & analog amp plus TEAC cassette/CD/usb/1/4” deck. Thats not *all the records* but a solid batch.

Another string of lights *and* Palau static montage… legit handcrafted speargun etc etc

Wood splitter, borrowed from forester Ukan and parents split up this rack / its loud & ornery but does the job

All hardwood – mostly oak and maple, odd bits of others (arborist wife often bringing home big chunks) This was all F&M-in-law. Epic. I’ll fire it up though (i just encourage)

Breaking rocks in the hot sun… (Ryoko has made a time-lapse of this rather intensive, long project…)

Continue reading Diary: Tsuchida station grounds projects, various

Pink Phone Generational Flashbacks (& Forwards)

From the front porch of the kura studio with cicadas chirping on a sunny day in Okayama come riffs and reflections about tatami mats revealing generational touchpoints, thoughts of friends passed on, reminiscences about american road trips with bands in renegade youth, sickness and healing, tree doctor tests, mystery old-timey radio shows, submarine films and evasion tactics from the signal corps.

Overall: home is where the projects are, planes can take you places you forgot (or try to) and phones can call anyone anywhere and the ¥10 is optional. Importantly, do you remember the number?

Brought to you (unofficially) by Sri Lankan cricket team, giant hat for ¥642 and Jevitty who are helping me live well past 100 (note apple watch).

Evidence: More records in the Kura (Gord Downie, Big Thief, Bob Dylan &…)

adding magic to the stacks with Big Thief’s Masterpiece, a masterpiece double vinyl from Gord Downie, and a piece from a master, Bob Dylan’s Planet Waves

Ummmm accidentally on purpose ordered some more records. Thelonious Monk, Charles Mingus, Louis Armstrong, Billie Holiday, Astrud Gilberto, Suzanne Vega, Big Thief, The Waterboys, Courtney Barnett, … more Tanya Donelly, more Weakerthans, more Hey Rosetta, Bob Dylan, and The Linda Lindas (via band camp).

I *should show you* one of these days (problem is, when I play the  records in video, creates intellectual property conundrums – and music must always be played in the kura barn where internet does not exist for streaming) #rules

Japan Generational farm house and cottage story

+ Introducing our compound in Tsuchida, Okayama +

I joined a Kominka (trad Japanese country home) renovation, acquisition & enjoyment group and made a video introduction – sharing here in case you are curious.

‘Tis a little intimidating cause a load of people are doing incredible detailed projects in remote locations with all sorts of hand-tools and techniques but hey, i am adding to the generation story of our land – its all about the cycles.

Riff includes parents’ renovated farm house and our “cottage” under construction.

In brief: Both of these homes were empty from the 1990s until about 7 years ago when my (arborist/jazz singer) wife re-opened the cottage, the parents followed and the dilapidated old farm house was reno’d keeping all the beams, much character and details.
Now the cottage (which sits where other buildings did in the past) is getting a big new room plus a load of other upgrades to add to the story. A mix of trad joinery and materials and a few touches from the parent’s reno (genkon doors etc) and also insulation, woodstove, tea ceremony area, and big doors out to the carport as i hope our place becomes the local hangout for our son Ichiro’s pals in years to come.

Also a peek at wife’s Naya toolshed and glance at garden. Oh yeah, i also ramble on about my “origin story” of coming to Japan in early 1990s and working as a mushroom farmer in Tottori before running away and hitchhiking from Shikoku to Nagano where i first experience renegade inaka living.

Very pleased to add to my local community and respect the work of the ancestors.

the “Sistine Chapel” of kura granary barns

PS If curious i have time-lapse video of the roof raising and other artifacts from the kura which is now my arts and crafts studio and music lounge.

panorama of the backyard with garden, kura barn and bamboo grove

 

 

Suez Panoramas, Global Postcards & Fungible Shiba Inu stamp

Arts and crafts update from the Kura barn with  recent dossiers of various mixed media projects including: Suez Canal panoramas, more Kerala India spy photos & sherbet-coloured houses in oil pastels, poetry & travelogues on hotel stationæry, and the circular story of a postcard series from Cascadia, also a fun-gible Shiba Eno stamp. 

Get in on the fun. #hint https://daveostory.com/shop

PS happy to be “at home” at Tsuchida Cottage 

Let’s enjoy global ephemera and postal goodtimes #daveoshop

Post’d: Pleasing session in the Kura barn

Love when my desk looks like this: 3 bevvies, stacks of cards, fountain pens & ink, stationery ahoy! Swoon

Wife was at tea ceremony so headed into the barn for a session a few days back with a variety of special handmade postcards, my custom stationæry letterhead, fountain pens, various ink colours, three beverages, and assortment of addresses all combined to send musings, sentiments and artistic ephemera to lovely correspondents in locales close and far with affection.

Oh and: In other “not surprising at all“ update, another new record. The Beatles, Abbey Road / Japanese pressing. The original price – back in the day – was ¥2500 (as listed on the “obi” sleeve wrap) >> I paid a little less than that for it by post (along with some other gym. The liner notes have the lyrics in original English with a Japanese translation as well. 

Note: i rock discogs.com {not even close to complete collection} and filter by “ships from Japan” and find all kinds of treasures from dozens of different stores and sellers. Always arrive well packed, cleaned and great condition. Finding some great bargains too!

put on a record, take a snooze, enjoy the cool, dark, quiet – sigh

PS Camping Cot added to kura barn studio/lounge for relaxing times when construction noise and commotion over-stims me. Such luxury!

 Are you in the Daveo postal club? Get on the list… You’re smart, you’ll figure out how to get in on the good times.

Tip: DaveO Shop open for biz with art cards, prints, poems and dossiers.

Post’d: Coffee break with fountain pen, Hey Rosetta & Mr Bragg

Funicular, Funiculaires, Post boxes, Alley ways, scissors and pens… stamps to elsewhere

Construction outside, coffee service delivered for the workers, now giving my ears and brain a bit of a break by hiding out in the barn with a stack of postcards (note: four different series in play today), my mom’s old scissors, my fancy #daveo50 fountain pen, stamps (which have nothing to do with the actual country mailing from or to), & Hey Rosetta’s phenomenal album “Seeds“ on vinyl just delivered (oddly enough) from Italy.

as it goes, turned on to Hey Rosetta on the same extanded wander as when i saw the scene which inspired the painting, which made the postcard…

As always, so much to tell you about and catch you up on but I’d rather do that by postcard if it’s all the same to you…

Love and Justice, thanks for the reminders Braggy

End of bulletin.

File Under Portals, vol. 1 (tobacco, kura, photo/coffee/masks)

Tobacco stands, spotted in the wild. Some are shuttered, some are (vaguely) operational, one is actually a ticket booth maybe. Note: the Japanese federal government is, I think, 27% owner of Japan Tobacco, a publicly traded company. I would fact check this but I’m folding laundry right now.

Machines designed to do dispense items, various – purchased items from 2 out of the 3

Kura barns, de/re-constructed at Nozaki-te salt compound, Kojima, Okayama, Japan
— at 野崎家旧宅

Kura Cultural Curation – Japan Cottage Musings

Kura Cultural Curation – Japan Cottage Musings

Riffs about home reform with new rooms, woodstove and tea ceremony area (thoughts of Ichiro and pals coming home from school) heat pump for humidity control for responsibly curating and collecting books for a legacy library.

And a rundown of recent new/used records including acknowledgement of Shred Kelly, Nice Horse, and (Buffalo Tom’s) Bill Janovitiz’s community building in times of tumult + musical memories in tangible form with David Bowie Let’s Dance picture disc, Hüsker Dü covers, Dead Kennedys, Sonic Youth’s Dirty (Europe 92), War on Drugs (comfort foods), literary keeners The  Weakerthans from Winnipeg, and importantly pal Pat WOOD on Awesome Death’s “To Be Determined.”

Thanks to postcard club participants and folks mailing stuff my way and Casa Rosa for safe haven for library staging.

Fondly, dvo at Giggling Piglet Atelier and Consulate

PS Investigate Forthwith:

Tsuchida Yard and Garden – Japan Cottage Musings

With Ichiro strapped on whilst outdoors, Dave and some dodgy camera work walk around the yard and gardens of our home in Okayama, Japan. Stops include: picnic area(s), Ryoko’s tool shed, location of upcoming house addition, various wood piles, bamboo grove, Mother’s vegetable garden, the kura grain barn turned art studio and (of course) a persimmon tree.

Appearances by father Takeshi, Ryoko of course, and the neighbour lady stops by to see the cutest baby.

Tsuchida Yard and Garden: Kei-truck with shelf project

Hats for Brautigan Books (for Marty and Willis)

Richard Brautigan’s “So the Wind Won’t Blow it all Away” and “In Watermelon Sugar” on the kura shelf with hats from Oman and Nepal

Hats not required for books unless requested.

{In this case: Richard Brautigan x 2 (of several but not all) > many lost along the way, including my favourite “Rommel Drives Deep Into Egypt” and his book from Japan “June 30th June 30th”.}

Ichiro: gift thank-you cards (vol. 2+) / 9.25~Oct. 13

Continuing on with Ichiro Cards (see vol. 1 of the meta proces documentation if inclined) obsessively custom, handmade of course, to send to folks who sent such lovely gifts from around the world.

The batches change due to supplies (esp paper stock and printer ink) as well as as we fresh-up ideas… In general include special snaps cut with dear Mom’s (heavy metal) pinking shears, attached to custom stamped (inky & franked postal) postcards then enveloped with family photo / am I ruining the surprise?

As such, some started simple…

and got more “maximalist” as we went along:

Some get a few photos to connect other stories (with annotations on reverse), e.g.:

Or catch up with life and things folks might like:

with “bonus snaps/items” which simply amuse metaphorical reasons or have some backstory:

sometimes the assortment doens’t make sense until you receive somehow corresponding items crossing in the mail. In this case, Richard Brautigan is the connective magic.

Sometimes we receive a snap of the delivered mail. In this case, the elegantly placed postal cancellation stamp from the folks at Higashi Okayama post office:

And while i sorta try to take snaps of most of the finished pieces, i invariably forgot most, but here’s a snap of a note which made the journey to California. Thanks JJ:

In general, we are trying to make a little something extra special special for everyone to brighten up their day in evidently strange times. First was to the dear folks who have mailed remarkable gift packages, care boxes and cards from around the world in commemoration of the birth of this dude.

Here’s another on display on a fridge in Vegas, to which we replied: 

“… fantastic to see! You know we absolutely love making these and seeing them complete their journey, hopefully bringing a smile to the recipient, especially in times of tumult. We truly appreciated your thoughtful gift.” (thanks C &T!)

Update Sept 26:

Ichiro cards batch, Sept 26

Each envelope receives an extra kiss before we send out upon a wormhole journey to points on earth Each one unique (of course) and crafted with affection for recipients… Get so excited thinking of the splendid cards arriving to post boxes elsewhere.

The stamps are chosen with care at the post office. Oddly, the standard international Air Mail rate of ¥110 is challenging to match up so we often over pay in order to get colourful designs rather than boring meters.

Update, Oct. 6:

Another 18 dossiers dropped at post office today (on a stroller walk with lil Ichi-Stan who is neighbourhood famous).

Each dispatch is hand-crafted / unique + that’s “batch 4” for Ichiro-cards, batch 5 already underway (about 23 envelopes) / noting each batch varies by materials available & inspiration sparks (do you want to see them all?)

Note: likely puts over 500 analog mail-outs for the year (including New Year’s cards) > this hobby does get a bit expensive (ink! stamps!) but joy to send a piece of “us” (with Ryoko Olson) is worth every yen. #kokoro

Let’s enjoy international correspondence from global correspondents!

Update, Oct. 13:

Another 18 going out into the world, or was it 23? Either way, another variation on the same idea… inky stamps, franked postage stamps collected around the world, special snaps of Ichi and other treats… scissors, glue, labels, love.

Batch 5, (or is it 6?) of Ichiro cards going out into the world… / hopefully finding hearts which are as grateful as we are. Each made with affection and truly unique. And yes, each is “important“ because the stamp says so.

Note: Persimmon not included

Redundant notes

Further annotations & postal tips.

Get in on the fun by mailing to:

Ichiro Olson
937-1 Tsuchida, Naka-ku
Okayama-shi, Okayama-ken
703-8217 Japan

Fondly from Tsuchida Cottage