- Last week it snowed in Tokyo, but Sunday was hot and sunny here, only to get quite chilly as the sun went behind the mountains at 4:00.
- The white police bikes were out. They like to do their speed-trapping in nice weather – you never see them when it’s raining. I suppose they have a monthly quota of fines to get in.
- Swallows have showed up in the village just down the road, but for some reason they never make it the extra few metres of altitude up to our house. We’ve certainly got enough insects for them to eat, but perhaps they’re not the right kind?
- Bamboo shoots coming up – ¥500 in the supermarkets, but in the ¥100 stand you could buy a big one for, yes, a hundred yen. Freshly dug bamboo shoots are a treat, with a special flavour that is soon lost. The trick is to boil them as soon as possible; I suppose it stops the natural conversion of sugars to starch or something.
- Is this kamemushi year? The smelly insects are turning up everywhere.
- Saw my first snake of the year – sunning itself on a grassy bank. Ten minutes later it was back in the same place, so it must have been a special spot.
- Did a bit of tree pruning and weed slashing. Nothing compared with the work coming up in a month or two.
- Min temp 2°C, max 21°C