Yōkoso - Turning Japanese (Day 164)
What date? How long? Where to go? All questions to ask ourselves to decide what exit flight to book. Shame sometimes we have to plan in advance.
Time is such a strange thing. Some days we pack lots in and other days like today it seems as if we do a paltry amount in the same timeframe. A very lazy morning. I think I was typing the blog at 1 word per minute. Once I finally got myself going, we decided to give Murphy a shower. After lots of fun on the beach, he was getting a bit grubby. We remembered that when our friends Serety and Ian first gave their pup Mac a bath, they put peanut butter at the bath end to keep Mac occupied. We thought this a good idea so I smeared peanut butter on the shower wall and off we went. Murphy was so well behaved. He even wagged his tail and let me scrub him all over. I must admit I’m not too sure who got the wettest – Murphy or me! Oh, and I did clean the un-licked peanut butter off. One thing that I did want to get done was to book our exit flight from Japan. It is a shame there is the constraint of having to book an exit flight before entering countries; understandable though. We know our next destination is South Korea visiting our friend Shin but what date? Side note: Isn’t the video of North Korea's leader Kim Jong Un and South Korea's President Moon Jae-in meeting one another fantastic! What a historic meeting, with the two leaders agreeing to begin "a new age of peace". I had a sense that a month in Japan would be ok, the weather changes at the end of June and we have a few places to go to before getting back to the UK for our niece’s Wedding. We’d bought some brown paper for our sketching (not that we’ve done much!) so tore some off the roll and copied a map of Japan onto it. I’d already done a bit of research so plotted key places to visit onto the map to help us work out a very rough plan. Nothing is set in stone so please if you have any recommendations for what to do in Japan – we’d love to receive them. (Ali? And Lou – I found your blog tips on Japan – fab - thanks) 20th June seemed about right, so did the price. Under £100 for us both. We do love SkyScanner, makes the whole process of finding best value flights so easy. I’d better keep practising my Japanese, it is going very slowly. I am beginning to recognise more shapes and know how to pronounce them. Just on Friday at St Kilda Pier we saw a sign explaining that the sister city to St Kilda, Obu in Japan have raised funds to assist in the protection of the Breakwater Sanctuary, where we met Martin, the Little Penguin and Hugo the Rakali. And then the sign had been translated into Japanese. I was well chuffed that I could recognise and pronounce some it! I was known to be dreadful at learning languages at school, just like writing, so perhaps now I can ditch those thoughts and might surprise myself! As well as sorting our Japanese out loosely, I did do a bit of admin (good ol’ GDPR!) and washing. Already it was dinner time. How did that happen? I am sure the clock was playing tricks. Tim made a delicious stir fry with Salmon. After dinner, I wanted to do something productive – ah! A play with some art inspired by Picasso. “Hey, Tim, could you put your hat on please” He complied and I did a quick sketch and got the paints out. What fun! It’s a very different way of looking at a person. I used to think that Picasso’s artwork was just weird, however, when visiting Museu Picasso in Barcelona a few years back I realised what an incredible artist he really was. As he said “It takes a long time to become young” and I felt that. Creating my work of art of Tim was with joy, love and a big dollop of childlike playfulness. Why not have a go yourself, we’d love to see your artwork. Arigatō