The image of Japanese people being relentless workers, showing up early and going home late, is pretty close to the mark in a lot of cases.. But the one day a year that they don’t lift a damn finger is January 1st. As such, New Year’s day in Japan is chilled out almost to a fault, if only that weren’t an oxymoron. Chieko said her grandfather used to frown upon housework on New Year’s day. My neighbor chided me for shoveling snow in front of my house as she passed by today. So if I ever needed an excuse to sleep late, crack a beer before noon, and then take a nap, New Year’s day in Japan is it.
But while I did sleep late today, I didn’t crack a beer till at least 2:30, and don’t recall ever taking a nap. Once I finally got myself upright and showered, I took a stroll out into the weather to try and get some nice wintery pictures of the area. I debated taking the car so I could get to some more remote places, but seeing as I’ve been whole-heartedly partaking in the holiday spirit of late, I figured a good walk was in my best interest.
It snowed a lot yesterday, and a good deal today, and is still doing so tonight. We haven’t picked up as much snow as we did 2 weekends ago, but for some reason they are doing a much better job of plowing. It’s pretty cold here by Kanazawa standards, which means our house is an icebox aside from our nicely heated, kotatsu-fied living room. The upside is that the kitchen is basically a walk in fridge; the downside of course is that it’s cold as hell whenever you have to leave this toasty room. It’s times like these that one sees the logic behind heated toilet seats.
These pictures are a little darker than I had intended. Better luck next time.
I hope 2010 brings good things to everyone. Happy new year!