Okay, kicking things off today was my placement test for Japanese. Exciting!!! I mean, it was nice because it felt low/no-pressure since it’s just me getting to where I need to be, but after a summer without really reading Japanese, whew was this a doozy. But it’s done and over with until real Japanese starts next week, so it’s all good! After the test I had lunch with Steph and Avery, which was a nice get-to-know-you and relax sesh. Then Lizzie came over from some magical wonderland of temples and jinja and we still had almost 2 hours to kill, so we did.
Okaa-san mentioned that you could get in to Gosho for free today, so after Lizzie finished lunch we headed on over – it’s only a ~3 minute walk to any entrance of the palace since it’s literally right across the street from Doshisha. It’s a spectacular fact of my new life and surely a future lunchtime chill destination. Anyways, we went there with about an hour to kill and we managed it! I plan on going back to really see everything, particularly the gardens, in detail but this was a fun brief look-around. There were plenty of beautiful buildings, gorgeously designed gardens and nice brief historical facts to let you know what’s up.
And the gardens . . .
After class today I wound up hanging out with Lizzie for an hour, so the bus ride home was a bit later than usual. Fun coincidence though, and something that made me appreciate the sporatic beauty of chance timing especially in such a complex overlay of spatial and temporal madness, was that I decided to take another semi-mystery route home today and ended up seeing okaa-san on the street, heading to her gym while I was about to backtrack her. I love those moments! Seriously mind-boggling.
Then dinner time came, along with kuzu mochi for dessert and more fun conversation. Today I learned that okaa-san is a rock and roll gal, and a super-fan of the following bands: the Rolling Stones, the Eagles, the Bee Gees, the Beach Boys, Rod Stewart, Billy Joel, and a few more I may remember later. She’s been to a Rolling Stones concert in Tokyo, and she loves the Beach Boys because her first unrequited love from middle school did. One-sided love, she said. To quote a great man, “Ah, to be young and feel love’s keen sting”. And otou-san has seen them live, for some unknown reason, a fact okaa-san is rather jealous of. Sooo cute! Otou-san also likes black women’s groups/music, apparently, which is also oddly specific and fun? I’m always entertained here, that’s for sure.