Retro Writers

If you’ve spent any time in the Saskatchewan writing community, especially if that time was spent up to the point six or eight years ago when the Saskatchewan Writers Guild got a new logo, you’ll enjoy today’s photo.

Those of you who have no idea what I’m talking about need not despair, however. In my utterly biased opinion the photo is still worth looking at, even if you don’t get my regional Canadian corporate identity references.

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No Need For Ruby Slippers

Well, we made it. There’s no place like home—though I’m not really sure what home is at the moment—and we didn’t even need to steal any witchly footwear to get back.

What follows is a brief summary of events. Hopefully it’s coherent despite my sleep-deprived brain.

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Tobata Gion Oyamakasa

I briefly wrote about the annual summer festival that’s held in our neighbourood called Tobata Gion Oyamakasa in a previous post or two. The festival commemorates a historical event about 200 years ago where the residents of Tobata were cured of a plague or somesuch epidemic disease. I’d do further research but that will have to wait until after I have some spare time. Here are the in-blog links: a photo from the 2004 festival and a brief mention in my Sugawara Jinja post

The festival involves residents of each of four neighbourhoods carrying large lantern floats. On the first night, all of the floats converge near the Tobata ward office, and race laps around the park. On the second night, each float gets paraded through its respective neighbourhood.

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The Coming Week: Blog on Autopilot

Between apartment cleaning, packing, disconnecting my internet connection at home, and travelling this week, I won’t have a lot of time to post, and I’m not sure if and when I’ll have a reliable internet connection again.

Having said that, I’ll probably have written enough posts to allow my automatic posting software to keep up with the daily blogging schedule until Friday. Beyond that is a huge swirling vortex of uncertainty. I’ve set up the posts to go online in the late afternoon (Japan time).

Cleaning and Muppets

Today was a national holiday called Marine Day. We spent the day cleaning our apartments, moving furniture between them, packing, and worrying about airline weight limits. We started around 8 this morning, and stopped at around 11 tonight, with brief intermissions to feed and rest. Though we haven’t really stopped with the worrying.

In the late afternoon, one of Jarrod’s classmates set up—with their drums, cymbals and flutes—in the park across the street with a couple of other kids. They must’ve practiced for two hours. It was quite something, especially with the hyperactive acoustics of the bare concrete buildings we live in and around. They gradually got better, but we were sure glad when they stopped.

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Avast Ye Scurvy Dogs! Prepare To Be Exercise

This is something I found on the blog of an acquaintance in Japan. I feel a bit strange posting but, but as it was online already and I haven’t given a link—you’ll have to go looking on your own if it’s that important—so I don’t feel strange enough to not post it. I could almost imagine having this conversation, except that as far as I know, my sister doesn’t have the issues discussed in the quote, and my mom’s English is much, much better.

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Canada-US Border Hijinks

I’m not sure how long this will be online, but I found an interesting juxtaposition of headlines on the Globe and Mail web site. (For those of you unfamiliar with Canadian news media, the Globe and Mail is one of Canada’s national newspapers.) It made me wonder about what really goes on in editors’ minds, if anything.

If I’m reading lines between today’s news stories properly, there are some strange goings-on at the Canada-US border.

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The End of the Dreaded Short-Sleeved Dress Shirt

I’ve never been much for formal dress. I had a suit, and wore it on the appropriate occasions: weddings, funerals, job interviews. And given the kinds of weddings, funerals, and interviews I’ve been to, I rarely wore it at any of them. But my working life in Japan has changed all that. My office is very formal, the dress code being along the lines of “there is no dress code but all the men wear suits.”

Now I own more than one suit. Many dress shirts. Neckties, even. And I’ve had to learn to tie said ties. Who could have imagined it?

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Ukiha Dippers

I took the day off today so that I could do some more moving prep. So instead of a long rambling post, I only have time for a photo and caption. This time it’s from a shrine I neglected to write down the name of, in Ukiha in the southeast corner of Fukuoka.

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