Autumn (Tokyo Studio)

Hakuro: Flocks of birds gather grain/ swallows leave (2 of 5)

September 21st, 2008

Hakuro 12 of 15It’s been very wet today. Tropical cyclone 0813 has been and gone (it’s now making a bee-line for the Pacific). There is tropical cyclone 0814 but it’s predicted to head towards China. Nevertheless, we are getting a lot of rain here. I didn’t look at the Japan Meteorologica Agency’s forecast today, but it probably said 90% probabitlity of rain – a bit wet for markets really.

There are markets in Tokyo every Sunday at various locations. Many of the ‘antique’ markets are held near shrines. We went to the one that is held weekly at Yasukuni-jinja. The shrine was busy but the markets not so. While waiting for the customers to materialise, the vendors chatted to each other, did a bit of catching up, I guess. A few vendors became absolutely enwrapped with a tri-colour cat nearby (it was a very cute and handsome cat). They fed the cat, petted it, gathered around and had a good old natter about ‘neko’. By the time we got to Yoyogi Park, it was very wet. People and umbrellas everywhere. Near the Meiji-jingu where the people and umbrella traffic was just unceasing , we found this little white cat sheltering in the rain, trying to get some peace.

3 Responses to “Hakuro: Flocks of birds gather grain/ swallows leave (2 of 5)”

  1. 1 Lucas
    September 22nd, 2008 at 9:09 am

    Does “neko” mean cat?

    Speaking of names, why do the tropical cyclones have only dry numbers? I think you should give them names.

    Here in Austinmer, big fat blowflies have invaded the house. I am surprisingly tolerant of them. They don’t seem to land on my body, just buzz around. Occasionally the sound of their wings flapping erratically is broken by a small “tap”, as they smash into the glass door.

    At night, they go silent. And each morning a few dead blowfly bodies can be found on the floorboards near the door. I open the door to kick them out, and the next batch comes right on in…

  2. 2 jolaw
    September 22nd, 2008 at 9:50 pm

    Yes, “neko” means cat. There are many sayings in Japanese that incorporates cats. See: I like “Neko mo shakushi mo” (cats and ladles too): meaning ‘everybody’.

    And yes, only numbers for tropical storms and cyclones. Might not be as personal, but still has certain resonnance.

  3. 3 lizzie
    September 24th, 2008 at 2:24 am

    You are developing a cat theme in this book of days… unsuprisingly for you perhaps.