Sunday, October 31, 2010

Works in October

Eggplant Friends
pencil on paper

All of my schools have some kind of garden, usually several kinds that are maintained very well by students and teachers. These eggplants are from Shinjo Elementary School. My teacher, Satake Sensei gave them to me after a visit to her second grade class. When she gave them to me I gestured them toward each other mimicking some kind of conversation since they both seemed to have long noses and odd shaped heads. We shared a laugh and a knowing look, since we mostly communicate through gestures and our mutual limited shared languages.

pencil on paper

Tanabe is a farming and fishing town. The rice harvest season is over now, but many of these have been built or rebuilt from the rice reeds. Depending on who you ask gets you several answers on what these are called and how they might be used. This one is along a road on the way to Akizuagawa and just before one of my favorite coffee shops, Kirara. To the right of the structure is the rice field and to the left and behind are mikan trees. It is a lovely green space. Further back along part of the river, you can see many turtles basking in the sun along various logs and river edges.

Doodles at Kinugasa
pencil on paper

Many of my schools have great areas to sit outside and think or draw while enjoying a shady corner of the ball field. Kinugasa Junior High School is one of those schools. This was done in a few minutes between periods while enjoying the cooler weather.
I am happy to see that bees are thriving.

doodle on paper

There are many of these around town in red and white marking the autumn equinox. They are lovely signs of a cooler time of year, though the deep red seems very hot in clusters across the many fields around the house here in Tanabe.

Cut Outs for Danielle
paper on paper in Journal

Danielle religiously mails me a letter from the States each and every Monday. Depending on weather and some strange time line created by the Japan Post, I get a wonderful treat about once a week. One reason is, she knows I love it and because she includes a recipe and some cut outs from magazines or newspapers, she fills me with some English reading. The best reason is she likes me, but more than that, she has lived away from her home for two years when in the Peace Corp. She lived in Gabon, Africa. She knows what mail means. What it means to be thought of in such a meaningful way that a friend would spend time to create something so special as to put a stamp on it and mail it to the future. What a special gift and a special friend. I am lucky. I love her handwriting too, this is part of one of her letters. And since she is a designer and artist, she does not at all flinch that I use her envelopes and letters for my own projects.
Thank you, Danielle!

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