Yes, I’m still climbing the mountain near my house here in Japan. Only twice a week now. It has been COLD! Maybe not by Michigan standards (where I grew up), but I’ve lost all of my tolerance for low temperatures. I think living in Southern California for fifteen years recalibrated my body’s thermostat.
So to make my twice-weekly pilgrimage up the mountain, I bundle up like I’m exploring the Siberian tundra. It’s well worth it. The calm, the quiet, the meditation, the centering has become a ritual I can’t live without. Well, I guess I would live. But I’d be more insane than I already am. My wife, Masumi, has yoga and ballet. I stumble up and down a big mound of dirt. Works for me.
Today my trek was a real adventure and a phenomenal treat. While normally we don’t get that much snow here in Sasayama — and when we do, it typically doesn’t linger more than a day — this weekend we got over 12 cm (5 inches) and it stuck around.
Now I don’t own proper hiking boots. And given the variations in temperature, sometimes I was plowing through snow, other times negotiating slush and ice. My feet ended up very numb and at times I felt like I was roller skating on Teflon. I’m proud of myself. I only fell once — no broken bones. And my piggies thawed out real nice. None had to be amputated. I didn’t even get chillblain itchies! Anyone growing up in severe winter weather will know what I’m talking about.
Anyway, here are a few photos.
I know how good I have it. I thank the karmic lottery every day for the life I fell into.
Is it so unreasonable to think that every single person in the world deserves this?
Just a simple, basic shot at happiness, free from hunger, fear, war, oppression.
Not that I expect it to shine any light on my random musings, here’s a song by Paul Simon. (Is he still married to Edie Brickell? Last I heard, their neighbors were complaining about the noise from them screaming at each other during their epic connubial squabbles.)
I don’t feel so all alone.
I guess everyone’s still crazy after all these years.