Uncategorized


chestnut reveals its hidden treasure

chestnut reveals it's hidden treasure

For several weeks now a big tree near the house has been throwing spiny pods as me whenever I pass. They litter the path and sting my toes through my sandals on early morning garbage detail. Except annoying, I didn’t know what they were. I grew up near the ocean, so to me they looked like a sort of land-urchin. This week the green pods started turning brown and splitting open to reveal the treasures contained within: chestnuts. (more…)

Advertisements

A very blurry photo, but I just wanted to brag about watching a summer fireworks display with a view of Tokyo Tower.

I lived in Montreal for 5 years and never once ate smoked meat at Schwartz’s. One summer nights the line always stretched out the door and up St-Laurent. Another time, I’d say to myself as I cycled past. here is a video dedicated to smoked meat, skateboarding, poutine and metal music… all thing that make Montreal awesome. (thanks to Fagstein for posting it first). 

even in the snow.... (taken from the an unusual day blog)

even in the snow.... (taken from the an unusual day blog)

Here are some photos of the garden.

shota-kun climbs a tree in the yard

shota-kun climbs a tree in the yard

Shota helped me plant all the beans and then we played soccer. fortunately my crappy Japanese language vocabulary include things like “ants,” “snakes,” “posion” and “dangerous.” We get along great.

digging out bamboo

digging out bamboo

Bamboo is incredibly invasive and appears to grow out of nowhere. This root was more than six feet long.

rei plants corn

rei plants corn

makoto plants tomatoes while suzuki-san and rei chat

makoto plants tomatoes while suzuki-san and rei chat

one corner of the garden

one corner of the garden

So things are not looking up for our national broadcaster (and my frequent employer). 800 jobs will be cut, as well as two regional bureaus. Programming will also be affected. I can’t imagine this country without the CBC, but I bet our current prime minister can.

On the bright, I have a new knitting pattern to start. The oh-so-talented Kate Gilbert has re-released her Sunrise Circle sweater. I’ve been lusting after this pattern for months.

i found my river to skate away on

i found my river to skate away on

I don’t remember exactly how it all went, but one day when I was about three mum was pulling me in the wagon on our way to the grocery store. It was a brilliantly sunny day and I said, “mom, what’s in the sunshine that makes me smile?” I didn’t know the science, but I was onto something.

It felt so good to get out of the Yukon for a little while, even if the destination was Winnipeg. The days were so much longer, and sunshine felt a little warmer.

For several years the city has been flooding the trails around The Forks National Historic Site, but this year the skating was better than ever. Take that Rideau Canal! The Guiness book of records recognizes the Winnipeg trail as the longest in the world.

the trail winds its way down the Assinaboine River from The Forks

the trail winds its way down the Assinaboine River from The Forks

The river perspective is not one you usually get, unless you happen to canoe to work. Down below the banks, we skated past people’s back yards, and the apartment buildings looked just that much taller.

No speed skaters allowed? Apparently there is a 37 km/h speed limit.

No speed skaters allowed? Apparently there is a 37 km/h speed limit.

the lowly shellfish

the lowly shellfish

More than three decades have passed since Douglas Adams penned the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. I’m still waiting for my babelfish ear piece.

I’m trying to learn Japanese. For the longest time I struggled with where to even begin. I speak French and German, but Japanese is from another plant, by comparison. Should I learn written or spoken first? Which set of characters?

Now I’m stumbling deeper into my new bible, Remembering the Kanji by James Heisig. My boyfriend’s mum recommended the Heisig Method. She’s a gaijin as well. The method is layed for Westerners, starting with the easiest characters to draw, working up to the more complex. He also groups similar looking characters.

Basically it’s one big game of word association. The crux of the method is to attach a story to  the character and meaning that will send the kanji straight to your long-term memory.

Sometimes it’s absurd, for example I know the characters for things like “gall bladder” and “old age,” though I don’t yet know essentials such as “train” or “bathroom.” “Employee” is my favourite character so far. Combining shellfish and mouth, I can just picture little crabs scuttling around the factory floor, chatting away to each other.

Next Page »