Saturday, August 30, 2014 anybody out there??

Joshua Tree National Park, February 2013

Wow. It's hard to believe that the last time I posted here was almost a year and a half ago. And to be honest, I was barely even here for the year previous. Things pretty much slowed to a halt on the blogging front right about the time we found out we were moving from Japan to San Diego, but this very long, very extended blog silence is only partly because of that.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Remembering 3/11: Second Anniversary

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Image: AP Photo/Kyodo News

It's hard to believe that two years have already passed since the massive earthquake and utterly devastating tsunami occurred in Japan. The earthquake struck the Tohoku region of Japan on March 11th at 2:46 PM (which translates to 10:46 PM Sunday evening here in California). We left Tokyo over a year ago for San Diego, but Japan was my home for more than a decade, and our thoughts are still often back there, especially now as the second anniversary approaches. The terrible loss experienced by so many families and communities in the areas worst hit by the tsunami is still keenly felt, and the reconstruction work will take many, many years to come. We can only hope that, two years on, they are a little step closer to finding some return to normal life, and some peace.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

The year so far ...

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Happy Lunar New Year to everyone who celebrated this past weekend.

As for what I've been reading in this Year of the Snake so far* ... not a whole lot, but what I have read has been great.

Friday, February 01, 2013

Another Year Gone By

On January 31, 2006 I posted here for the very first time. This means that In Spring it is the Dawn is now 7 years old! Can you believe it? I know I've said it before, but I will say it again - Thank you so much to everyone who kept in touch with me during my hiatus (on Facebook, or Twitter, or by email) and to everyone that never gave up encouraging me to return. It's because of you and your friendship that I'm here! Since I have only just begun blogging again after more than a year away, and since I didn't celebrate the blog's anniversary last year, I think I'll actually count this as the 6th Blogiversary. But regardless of the math, I think this calls for a giveaway!

To commemorate Tony's first (annual?) January in Japan event, and Bellezza's Japanese Literature Challenge 6, both of which, sadly, have just concluded, one lucky winner will get the Japanese Literature title of their choice*.

Thursday, January 31, 2013

'The Briefcase' by Hiromi Kawakami

I ordered a copy of The Briefcase not too long before it was shortlisted for the Man Asian Literary Prize, but even if it hadn't been selected as a contender for the award, I knew I wanted to read it. Heck, I'm always interested to discover a new-to-me Japanese author but the story appealed to me as well.

From the back cover:
Tsukiko, thirty-eight, works in an office and lives alone. One night, she happens to meet one of her former high school teacher, "Sensei," in a local bar. Tsukiko had only ever called him "Sensei" ("Teacher"). He is thirty years her senior, retired, and presumably a widower. Their relationship - traced by Kawakami's gentle hints at the changing seasons - develops from a perfunctory acknowledgment of each other as they eat and drink alone at the bar, to an enjoyable sense of companionship, and finally into a deeply sentimental love affair.