Spring is over. We’ve been experiencing the rainy season of Japan for at least the past two weeks, if not longer. Here in Northern Honshu the weather is cool but humid, the landscape green and gray. Although it’s the middle of June, it doesn’t feel like summer at all. We’ll have to wait until the end of July for that.
In the meantime, with all the extra humidity, we’ve had to step up our mold prevention effort. This weekend we swapped out all the moisture absorption packets in our closets and drawers.
Rainy season is also, apparently, caterpillar season. We’ve seen them everywhere we go. Most of them tend to look something like this.
On Friday we had a wonderful time hanging out at a yakiniku (grilled meat) restaurant with friends. The following morning Julie helped out at a local nursery. She met many kids under the age of five and, for most of them, it was their first time meeting a foreigner. In the afternoon I played Go at the community center.
On Sunday, I went hunting.
By “hunting” I mean watching animals in the woods with my friend Bryan without weapons (though to be fair Bryan surprised me by brandishing a fake pistol that he hilariously explained would be used for self-defense). We ended up in a moist forest on the outskirts of Shichinohe and at times I felt like I was back in Oregon.
So did we find anything? Yes. Just when we had given up hope of spotting large, interesting creatures, a Japanese serow (wild goat-antelope) came trotting across a ridge about twenty feet away from us. It was, understandably, surprised to see us and stared us down for a few moments before venturing deeper into the woods. Success.
Looking ahead to this week, we’ll both be pretty busy with school visits. However on Thursday afternoon I’ll be participating in a teacher softball match. On the weekend we’ll be heading to the Oirase Gorge for a night of trivia, charity fundraising, and fun with friends.