Tuesday, December 01, 2009

my other family

I consider myself a very lucky person. I have an amazing family. My mom is my best friend in the entire world. We could spend weeks, months, years together and never get tired of each other. My dad is known for his kind heart and jolly countenance, both of which go deep to his core. The boys, and their girls, are always up to something. You could probably say the 3 of us inspire each other to new and greater adventures. I am so thankful to have a family such as this.

However, on top of this greatness, I have another family, my family in Japan. Every time I visit them, it's once again confirmed- they are as close as it gets to blood relatives. I don't know why or how our relationship got to be so great, but I truly love these people.

My dad's name is Kimiaki. He worked for the city of Hiratsuka before retiring about 10 years ago. I love asking him questions because along with the answer, every time, I get a history and cultural lesson. Yesterday, while eating breakfast, chatting and watching the news, I asked him how long the Japanese president stays in office. He started his answer by explaining the German and American system, then moving on to England and finally Japan. All the while, Yoshiko, my mom is hitting and scolding him for giving me so much information. I try to ask 4-5 of these types of questions per day. Yoshiko reminds me a lot of my mom. She's outgoing, funny and always up for an adventure. Yesterday, I went walking with her and her long time (40+years) friend Miyoko. We walked along the river to the beach, admiring all the little flowers and the fall colors on the distant hills. Since my sister, Eiko, works during the day, I spend of the afternoon with Yoshiko, talking about recipes and family and my upcoming travel plans. It's quite lovely.

Aren't they precious?

Did I mention my mom is the best cook in all of Japan? Last night's tempura dinner. Yum.

Eiko is my sister. She is the whole reason why I became interested in Japan. She came to our house in San Diego almost 20 years ago as a exchange student. She just fit in with our family and thus began the relationship. She is a wonderful person, too- fun loving, smart and independent. Since my Japanese has digressed quite a bit in the last 3 years, she's always a great help when I find myself in a sticky spot.

Enough narrative, time for pictures. Today we went to Kamakura, the spot where the wedding was last week. Eiko took the day off and it was nice to take our time to visit a few more temples. The fall colors were beautiful, although they are nearing the end of the season.

Last, introducing...

Meticulous Japan.

Thirsty Japan.

Festive Japan.

Love you all. Don't forget to comment!!!


Vinay Bhardwaj said...

Hey Gurrrl!

Hard to believe that some one who was just 60 miles way is now 6000 miles away! But the pictures of good food covers it all, but I guess more words, more pictures and little more of both of 'em would be a little better. Keep 'em Coming.

Therese Franger said...

Oh my gosh, you are a great writer and I so love your narratives (and pix.) I am so thrilled that you are in the home of our second family and hope that you have some wonderful memories to bring back home. They all have a special place in my heart as well and I want to see them someday soon. I love hearing your stories on skype- man's greatest invention. I love you and miss you, gmg (soon to be)

jon lai said...

lindsey! i really enjoyed reading your stories :) your love for life is so encouraging. it's motivating me to get off my ass and do some adventuring myself! I've been trying to paint and draw more about themes that relate to my own surroundings, culture, upbringing. although its difficult, i know that there are deeper "hidden treasures" to be discovered in the suburbia i live in right now.

yu said...

I love your narratives!!
You have such an awesome relationship
with your host family, and it's
quite impressive what an individual
exchange student can do -- connect
family2family for 20 years!