Kintora Matsuri (fun festival with music food and sake, sadly now over) in Ozone so we stay in Nagoya.
Autumn is here. A cold front brought that interminable hot summer to an abrupt end with a torrential downpour on Wednesday (something like the Guerilla Rain that hit us on 2000/9/11!) and temperatures back in the 20’s. Sunday is more rain most of the way up, and the rice is lying flattened, but by the time we arrive it’s starting to clear up, and we have a starry sky in the evening, along with an autumn insect chorus that has to compete with the stream, swollen with all that rain, and “Tokyo Jazz” live on the radio. (I’m not a major Chick Corea fan but his new band sounded incredible that night.)
Meanwhile, we had visitors in the last two weeks. The zucchini and pumpkins are all gone, even that half-eaten one. The net is down – could it have been a joint attack by the monkeys and deer? The goya are OK though – animals have more sense than to eat anything that bitter. Monkeys hate chillies too, apparently, but the deer love to eat the leaves if they get a chance.
Monday is a glorious autumn day. I fix the net and cross fingers – though there’s nothing left to attack – and pick some goyas. Just down the road yesterday’s rain-flattened rice has already been cut.
Min. temp. 15°C, max. 28°C
Typhoon weekend! No. 18 seems to be heading right this way, and the radio’s talking about torrential rain – total falls of 400~500mm! We think about abandoning our weekly trip, but in Nagoya there’s not a drop as yet so we set off just before noon. There are plenty of dark clouds overhead, and a greasy sort of typhoon wind is blowing fitfully around the supermarket carparks, but we arrive OK to find the temperature just right. I pick chillies and mini-tomatoes while I can. The higanbana are out a week early.
Eating outside seems foolhardy, so we have dinner in the kotatsu, listening to rain reports of flooding and landslides. It finally starts raining about 11PM and continues all night, though not outrageously heavy.
On Monday the rain stops about midday, but somehow out here we’ve missed all the damage done elsewhere as no.18 landed at Toyohashi and moved up through Tohoku. (They’re nervous about all that rainwater in Fukushima.) Meanwhile Monday afternoon is fresh and pleasant. I see the again. I pick some more goya , and see a tiny snake with a bright yellow collar. Aound 5:00 there’s a sudden cold wind.
Min. temp. 16°C, max. 29°C
The weather has settled and Sunday is a pleasant autumn day with blue sky and a bit of light cloud. The temperature is just right – finally the summer heat has broken. Shadows are longer and the days are shorter – Monday is the Equinox.
For some reason vegetables are expensive: cucumbers, tomatoes, eggplants… but at the farmers’ stand there are 100yen pumpkins. It’s a good price and pumpkins keep so we buy one. Our mini-tomato plant has done well too. They’re delicious. I don’t prune them or train them up posts – just let them do their thing.
The evening temperature is also perfect for dinner outside, serenaded by the crickets. There’s not a breath of wind.
Monday morninng is perfect again! It’s cool in the shade with a bit of breeze today, though the sun has a bite. That summer humidity is all gone. A little lizard comes out to entertain us after breakfast.
We’re going back to town to see a film, so there isn’t a lot of time to pick chillies and bury compost…
Min. temp. 12°C, max. 25°C
The maximum and minimum temperatures don’t really reflect it, but this week it’s been a good bit cooler. Nagoya’s been very pleasant, and on Sunday it’s still pretty clear with just a sprinkling of autumn cloud.
The goya have slowed down – just a couple are of pickable size, and the little ones probably won’t grow much more. There are lots of red chillies though, and some more mini tomatoes. The little hot “ishigaki” chillies are very hot this year, but the plants haven’t grown as big as usual. Not enough fertiliser?
I do a bit of weed cutting – long neglected, like this blog – till it gets dark, which is now at 6:00, an hour earlier than summer.
The evening is pleasant – dinner under the stars is quite feasable with a fire.
There’s been no rain for a while so everything’s pretty dry, which is nice for us. The chillies seem to be coping OK too.
Spot another of those tiny snakes with a yellow collar.
Min. temp. 11°C, max. 27°C