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There's going to be a lot of action taking
place around here in the next few months.
We're going to be having visitors and we'll
be taking a trip ourselves.
Monday is the start of Golden Week, a week-long
national holiday, and our friends Jay and
Theo will be flying in to Tokyo from Kyushu
for a short vacation. They're not going to
be staying with us, but we'll be knockn'
back a few sakes and breaking in our new dancing shoes before
they leave, if you know what I mean.
Then in May, Amanda, my friend and ex-coworker,
will be flying in from New York for a few
weeks. She used to work with me at Netyear in Tokyo, but then returned to the US to
do a graduate degree at Harvard. Amanda is
doubly welcome in our home because she is
coming with a present for one of our family:
one extra ticket to the retirement ceremony
of the great Yokozuna Takanohana, one of
the shining stars of Sumo today. I love Sumo,
and tickets to this event are, I'm sure,
incredibly difficult to lay your hands on.
Karen and I have already begun the battle
of wills to see who will get to go with Amanda
to the ceremony.
Finally, in June we'll all be going back
to Vancouver for Karen's sister Julie's wedding.
I'll be staying for three weeks and Jack
and Karen will stay for six. You can expect
a lot of good pictures from this trip because
we're planning on going camping and visiting
some of the Gulf Islands.
One funny thing that happened to me this
morning was that when I mentioned to some
of my classmates from my Japanese language
school that I was going to Canada in June,
they said, "What!?! Canada!?! Why are
you going there? Now we'll have to be afraid
"Afraid?" I asked.
"Yes" they replied,"Because
of, you know, that SARS thing. It's all over
It's a sign of the strange times that we're
living in when people from countries like
Bangladesh and Nepal, and from regions like
Central Africa, are afraid to associate with
a Canadian because they don't want to catch
How bad is the SARS problem in Vancouver
anyway? Should we be worried?
I'll be looking forward to your responses.
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Things are going well. I'm just going to
give you a quick update for now.
This coming weekend I have three more weddings
to conduct -- so wish me luck.
Last night I went to a Tokyo Bloggers' meetup,
which was kind of like the party that Nadine and I organized in Februrary but is held
on a regular basis.
It was good to see some familiar blogger
faces again, but unfortunately I couldn't
stay very late and missed the party at Club
However, there are some pictures online that
you can check out if you're interested.
Anyway, I have to go and rehearse my lines
for my wedding tomorrow.
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As I was walking to the train this morning,
on my way to school, I realized that I had
forgotten most of my lunch at home. It was
too late to go back, so I decided that I
would just buy something to eat at the convenience
store. I knew right away what I would get
-- an onigiri.
Onigiris are small triangles of rice and (usually)
fish wrapped in seaweed. They're the Japanese
equivalent of the sandwich -- quick, easy,
Actually, they come in a wide variety of
styles. What I consider the standard consists
of plain white rice with a little pocket
of fish, or roe, or savory seaweed in the
center, all wrapped in a sheet of dry, salty
seaweed. However, some of them are made with
rice that is premixed with all sorts of small
bits of good stuff, like sesame seeds, salmon
flakes, and kelp. Some of them have curried
chicken in the center. Some have a damp seaweed
wrapping, and some have one big chunk of
fish on the outside.
I realized how much I love onigiris, which is a good thing because they're a
healthy thing to eat. Making and eating onigiris will definitely be one of the things that
I take with me back to Canada when I leave
Japan for good.
I eventually got on the train and made it
to school. That afternoon I bought an onigiri stuffed with tuna and mayonnaise -- just
like a tuna sandwich back at home. It was