There was no farm report last week because I stayed in town – the band had a gig on Sunday afternoon. T. went up with a couple of friends and picked plums (ume actually) and tea.
- This time we got to the house, opened the front door and were greeted by a blast of mould smell. Yes the Rainy Season has set in and mould has exuberantly infested the tatami matting, wooden beams and just about any surface available. At this time of year you can’t leave a bottle of soy sauce in the kitchen without coming back the next week to find it covered in mould. Ugh. It can get bad enough to give me headaches; anyway house dust and, yes, mould, can trigger an allergy which brings on sneezing and endlessly running nose, though generally the humidity helps me, compared with the dry Autumn. This time of year the moisture rises up from the ground too – or is it the moist air hitting the cool ground surface – but anyway on a bad day the kitchen and entrance floors can be wet. No wonder we prefer to have dinner outside under the stars ( or clouds ) if it’s not raining.
- Came into the house that evening and saw a brown blob on my big toe. got a tissue to wipe it off and found it was a leech. Hmm, maybe you didn’t know Japan had leeches too. Add that to the list of nasties.
- Still, there are compensations – late June/early July is when the fireflies come out. The season is very short, just a week or so, and the conditions have to be right: a cloudy, warm, humid evening with little wind and no rain from about 8:00 to 9:00 pm. We saw just one or two, so maybe we were a week late, or, hopefully, a week early so we can look forward to more this weekend. We’ll see, but if you’re lucky enough to hit the right time and see a whole load of them, it’s absolutely magic. A couple of years ago a friend told us about a good place just up the road, and, sure enough, there was a rice field by a stream where hundreds of fireflies filled the sky with a molten milky way of stars, accompanied by an orchestra of frogs. One of those unforgettable moments…
- A spider has made its web in our outside urinal. The stream of urine hitting the web when I used it must have seemed like a caught insect at first, but that spider soon discovered this was something totally beyond its concept of reality. A paranormal experience, repeated two or three times that day.
- Out with the weed cutter, and try to get the upper hand on the jungle that’s trying to establish itself around the house but it’s almost a hopeless task. You’ve heard the story of the team of men whose job it is to paint the Forth Bridge? As soon as they get to the end it’s time to start again.
- Minimum temp. 16°C, maximum 25°C.