The Time is Spring, the Coloring of Moving Days.
Hello, I am Bumblebee, a housewife writer! I'm Bumblebee, a housewife writer who is getting older and more teary-eyed every year.
The season is spring.
It is the season of ends and beginnings, encounters, and partings.
In this article, I would like to record my week as a diary.
What moving events will happen in this dramatic season of spring?
"Spring sleeps, unaware of dawn."
At the beginning of the week, melancholy prevails over the feeling of freshness.
My morning routine was to make the rounds of the garden.
I love peony flowers.
A peony when it stands, a peony when it sits. When she walks, she is a like a lily.
The way the buds open softly and bloom while releasing an aromatic fragrance is a perfect example of a beautiful woman.
I bought a small stick seedling at a gardening store and planted it last spring.
I remember how disappointed I was when the leaves grew but disappeared before I knew it.
My favorite plants do not always survive in my garden.
"Brutus, you too?" I thought to myself.
I planted asparagus in our vegetable garden about five years ago.
I bought the roots, spread them out like the legs of an octopus and buried them upside down.
In the first year, the roots were fatten up like so, sprouting spontaneously starting from the next spring.
When harvested, they are so fresh and sweet that water drips from the cross sections.
This winter, however, was unprecedentedly cold.
When I moved the soil out of the way, I found many roots that had frozen with ruined contents, possibly due to a lack of a soil.
I removed all the roots that looked like a bag of straws with no contents.
Believing that the lower part was still alive, I fertilized it and decided to let it rest for recovery this year, a week ago.
It's been a while since I made my morning rounds of the garden on Monday.
What I found was...only one asparagus that had firmly emerged from the soil!
And the peony had also spread its leaves firmly before I knew it.
I want to learn from the resilience of plants that endure the cold, the harshness of the environment as they try to survive!
That was what I thought this morning.
I receive a letter from an acquaintance.
The person, who graduated last year, was a student in my grandmother's calligraphy class.
She learned to read and write for the first time since she turned 60.
How is that possible? The literacy rate of the Japanese is almost 100%, right?
Well, she was not part of the "almost" 100%.
Born into a farming family with many children, she was told by her parents that there was no need for a woman to and raised to take care of her younger brothers and help on the farm without being able even go to elementary school.
This was before the war.
She then married early and worked hard to raise her children.
She says that her husband did the shopping and other things that require calculation for her.
This is neither a good nor bad story, or even one to feel pity about.
It is hard for us to even imagine what life would be like without being able to read.
As I felt deeply while working in the nursing care industry, there are things that happen in life that are hard to believe.
Her case is one of them.
When she was over 60 years old, her husband, who had supported her all her life, passed away, so she started taking calligraphy classes at the suggestion of her family.
At the age of 60, she opened the door to new knowledge.
I remember her sitting upright in front of a long desk in her grandmother's small classroom, diligently writing letters.
I also remember her hurriedly correcting herself when she was warned that she put too much force into her writing, which caused it to tilt forward.
After 30 years have passed and my grandmother has passed away, she still writes to me from time to time.
Her handwriting has become much more skilled, and her letters are incomparably more beautiful than mine.
Her letters begin with a season's greeting, then a report on her daily life, a thoughtful address about my health, and a concluding note.
I can vividly feel that she is continuing her journey of intellect with reading and writing as her entry point.
There is no age limit to starting something.
The door of knowledge is open to us at any age.
Her letters always remind us of this very fact.
A little after 6:00 a.m., I took a morning walk.
Our house is in a rural area on the periphery of a regional city that is gradually being eroded by the city.
Since moving here, I have seen tree frogs for the first time and learned how a skylark chirps.
Weasels also live there, perhaps targeting rats.
As I worked with the farmers, I understood why there are so many fallow fields and how hard it is to grow rice.
Now, construction is underway in the city to reclaim rice paddies and turn them into industrial parks.
This rural area will eventually be swallowed up by tasteless warehouses and factory zones.
Skylarks build their nests in fields.
To claim their territory, they begin chirping on the ground, and fly away after a while.
They soar to a height where their tiny bodies look like dots, flap their wings and chirp without pause, and when they are tired, they come back down and repeat.
This is a bird that begins singing at the end of February, when it is still cold, and heralds the arrival of spring.
How long will we be able to see them?
Or will they adapt to their environment and return to urban parks, like the kingfisher, which is said to live only near clear water and has almost disappeared for a time?
I listen to the chirping of the kingfisher with a sense of prayer.
I was not feeling well, perhaps hit by the temperature difference between morning and evening.
It seemed that not only my body but also my mind is tired.
I felt like going to the park before the cherry blossoms fall, but I gave up and went to bed early.
The last day of March.
On my way to work by bicycle, I run into the new guy from my old workplace.
He calls my name, waves his hand, and runs up to me.
The newcomer is friendly and honest, and while he sometimes confuses those around him with his strange comments, he has been doing his job well under the strict guidance of his seniors.
At one point in time, I fell ill and even considered quitting.
We women in the office were almost the same generation as his parents. Looking back, we all watched over him like his guardians.
"I will be moving to a new position! Thank you so much for all you have done for me!"
There was practically nothing I could have done, but he was very disciplined and expressed his gratitude.
He was even a little tearful, as if he was remembering many things.
He had been through a lot of hardship in a department where many things were unreasonable, so this transfer surely would be a good thing for him.
"I know you've been through a lot. Good luck in your new department!"
I did not have any witty words to say, these were my heartfelt words.
"Yes, I will do my best. Good luck to you as well!"
He waved his hand and ran off energetically. Ah, the future is just ahead.
Feeling encouraged, I, too, stepped on the pedals of my bicycle.
Being honest and hardworking is undeniably a talent.
Wherever he goes, his beauty will be accepted by those around him.
May his future be ever so bright.
Saturday and Sunday
Although my condition has not returned yet, I went to Jiseizan Naya-dera Temple in Komatsu, Ishikawa, which is my temple of choice.
On the way there, I saw many beautiful cherry blossoms along the riverside and in the mountains.
As I traveled north, I felt as if I was turning back time, seeing cherry blossoms that were almost completely gone, in full bloom, and just beginning to bloom.
As I gazed at them, I started to ponder about why cherry blossoms are so beloved.
Perhaps it is because the cherry blossoms overlap with memories of past events, such as entrance ceremonies, looking up at them with someone, or seeing them in the park on the way home.
Perhaps we subconsciously sympathize with the hard work of those who planted and cared for the rows of beautifully blooming cherry trees, as well as with the anticipation of those who look forward to spring.
Perhaps it is because it is rare to see a flower that is beautiful up to the moment it falls.
There is nothing more beautiful and moving than the sight of petals being blown up by the wind and scattered like a snowstorm.
Perhaps it's because it's a scene where life shines against the backdrop of death, just as people cheer at the brief flashes of light from fireworks.
I now understand how Saigyo Hoshi felt when he composed the poem, "Let me in spring die under the blossoming trees, around the full moon in March." Saigyo passed away on the day of the full moon in kisaragi (present-day March), just as he had wished.
It was the same day as the Buddha's death, which he had wished for.
The cherry blossom is a flower loved by Saigyo Hoshi, who was born into a samurai family but became a Buddhist monk and lived his life as a traveler.
I'm going to try to imitate him a bit and compose a haiku.
A cherry blossom, a view of a nameless spring…
When cherry blossoms bloom there, any place can be a spectacular sight.
That is the power they have.
Perhaps the reason people are so moved is because they are bathed in the very life that the cherry blossoms emit.
On the way back home pondering about this, I found myself completely recovered both physically and mentally.
How did you like it?
The many small emotions that color the days of spring which is finally here.
To be moved is to have something touch your heartstrings and make them tremble.
If that's the case, then there must be a lot of it scattered throughout our lives.
As long as we are alive, our hearts will continue to move.