Opened the car boot to load in bags and noticed how much the temperature has just gone up – inside the car the air was nice and cool, without any use of the air conditioner.
A beautiful day for speed-trapping, and there they were with their white motobikes, in their favourite spot, hauling in a middle-aged lady.
The May sun can be quite fierce – there’s a lot of UV out there too, which you don’t notice because of the cool wind so you can get burnt easily.
Wild wisteria out in the hills, azaleas, flowers come out one after another – spring is busy. Busy for us too – trees to be pruned, weeds to be cut, and the field where the chillies will be planted has to be dug up. That last job should have been done last autumn, leaving time now for the other stuff…
Got some mustard greens (karashina) at the 100yen stand. These have a nice hotness when raw, or pickled in salt, but are also good stir-fried, when the mustardy taste goes.
More and more voices around the house – frogs, a strange mournful bird like an owl an octave higher, another one has a beautiful call with a delicate fall at the end, as if it was speaking Thai… but no uguisu yet.
Lots of flies.
Dinner outside for the first time – a bit chilly but OK if you sit near the fire.
There wasn’t much rain last week, but in the woods behind the house there was one bamboo shoot. I made an Indian pickle with the crunchy part, and T cooked the rest with soy sauce, fish flakes and a couple of sansho leaves. Sansho has a sharp lemony smell but has a strange affinity with freshly dug bamboo shoot. Both seem to have an oddly creamy undertone, if that makes any sense…