Monday, November 22, 2010

how to cure luxurious discontent and autumn leaves in mino-o

there's a good cure against arrogance and the thought of not having everything you want.

every time i walk through the park between the subway station and the office, i see a lot of homeless people. they're living in selfmade huts at a corner of this park, made out of sheet iron and plastic bags and this is almost the town center. i saw them washing with icecold water at a temperature at which i was wearing a woolen dufflecoat. in the morning they sometimes dry their clothes on the guard rail of the small artificial lake. and a few days ago i saw one of them sitting by the entrance of the subway (it is a bit warmer there), eating raw meat out of aluminium foil and really don't want to know which animal that was, the ribs were pretty small. 

and i bet there's people living under far worse conditions. so, everytime i start to think "ah, my apartment's so cold", "the food's so expensive" or "i wish i wasn't an intern anymore", i just think of the people living in ogimachi park and my problems shrink to embarrassed little dustflakes.

ok, now from the unpleasant to the pleasant. 
last tuesday we went to mino-o, which is in the north of osaka, to admire the colourchanging of the leaves. we were a bit early on purpose, cause next week the place would be so overcrowded with people trying to capture the beauty of autumn with their mobile phone cameras. 

there's a nice path/street leading through the forests by the side of a river, passing some temples and shrines and ending at a waterfall. i really enjoy how in japan each season is celebrated with some traditions like special food or decoration. people here seem to be a lot more aware of the nature surrounding them. not that in other countries people don't enjoy autumn leaves, it's just that here the fascination you had as a child for some things doesn't get lost or buried under the stress of daily life.


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