Tuesday, June 26, 2007


For some reason, I haven't been able to post for a couple of weeks. It's been very frustrating, as I've been bursting with anecdotes! For instance, a week or so ago, Lilia read a book to me for the first time, which was very exciting. She's also started picking out Chinese characters that she knows on billboards and such. I'm starting to believe that she may turn into a reader after all.

In other news, I got my contributor's copies of Eye-Ai magazine today, with my story featured on the cover! I interviewed Angela Aki, a singer-songwriter who's been topping the Japanese charts lately, and who was born in the next burg over. Her mom is American, and her dad is Japanese. She attended the same elementary school as my son. I think I mentioned this before.

Anyway, I interviewed her via telephone in the midst of her tour. I let my son answer the phone so he could say that he talked to Angela Aki, and then I took over. She was super nice. Our conversation was interrupted twice - once when my mother-in-law yelled up at the stairs at me, and another time when I had to help Lilia go to the bathroom. She was very understanding about the whole thing.


Tuesday, June 05, 2007


This afternoon when I went to pick up Lilia at school, she started going on about fireflies. Earlier, a teacher had shown the kids a firefly she'd caught near her house. She showed them photos and explained all about fireflies and their semaphores. Lilia insisted on having one more look at the photos posted in the hallway before going home.

After dinner, she managed to convey something about fireflies to her father and he suggested that we go have a look. Firefly-viewing, like moon-viewing and cherry-blossom-viewing, is one of those time-honored Japanese traditions, but in all my years in Japan, I've never gone in search of flickers in the night. Fireflies remind me of lazy, barefoot summers in Michigan, and of Mason jars with holes punched in the lids. We caught them and made lanterns of our cupped hands.

Tonight, we piled into the car and Yoshi drove to a wooded area along a stream. It was very dark and we could hear frogs bellowing. It wasn't long before we saw a tiny flash. Then, we found a spot with entire constellations of fireflies. We didn't get close enough to catch any, but Lilia shouted with delight. She told me that she likes firefly-viewing better than her Nintendo DS.