Monday, May 14, 2007

Mother's Day

And the only thing I didn't get around to is calling my Mother! Well that will have to be on the agenda for today.

I had a very busy weekend, so much so that I feel rather resentful that here I am back in weekday-land, with OBLIGATIONS and no time to slack off.

But I had a great weekend. I started out Saturday morning at the monthly Jusco flea market, bought a few kitties, a rocking horse, an umbrella stroller, a photo album, a jubako and a bizarre bottle cover. I'm not sure what I'll do with that, probably sell it!

Then we went shopping in the mall, and true to my last post, found a nice top in the 'normal' clothes that will do for bump-covering. It's white broderie anglaise. I had to go to work in the afternoon, and when I got back to Baachan's, I found the kids had already arranged to stay the night. So I was sent off for the pyjamas and the morning glory seeds Amy got at school and wanted to plant with Jiichan, then I was on my own. Kanji was in another town for a meeting, unsure if he would be making it home or staying overnight.

Unlike some young mums I don't desperately crave being alone (though I don't mind it) so I wasn't jumping up and down going yay! or anything. If I wasn't pregnant I might have popped out to my local bar for a drink, but as it was, I just had a normal night at home. Without the bedtime routine, you do get a lot more done, but being tired, after I cleaned up and ate a dinner of leftovers, I just messed around with the photos on my laptop, which needed cleaning up, and watched American Idol before collapsing into bed. Kanji came home in the middle of the night and scared the living daylights out of me, so I didn't wake up alone.

We slept in until 9am! That's the advantage of the kids staying at Baachan's! Then we picked them up for our planned day out. We went to a nearby town, Bungotakada, to visit a 'Trick Art' museum. I won't bother explaining it, I'll just post the photos and you can see for yourself.

We had lunch in a cafe that had only two choices - curry or beef stew. We were just so desperate to find a place because of the old lady following us. Why was an old lady following us? Well, the owner of the museum's son had gone to kindy with Lena, so we kind of knew each other from the school door. We chatted a bit before we went it. Her mother was caring for the boy while she sold the tickets. After we went through, it was lunchtime. Kanji suggested we walk, and ask if we could leave the car in their carpark (Japanese can get very zealous about carparking, so it pays to ask). I suggested, why don't we ask if there is anywhere we can eat around here, thinking that they would know places that kids would like. So we asked, and rather than just tell us the streets, the Baachan and the boy came with us. Okay so far, that's not unheard-of in Japan, many a tourist has reported being personally escorted by a stranger. But they just kept coming. I thought they would surely turn back when we reached the main shopping street, but no, along she trotted, pointing out every restaurant. Every now and then we'd stop and say thank you, expected them to say 'oh no it's nothing' but turn around and go home. And each time she would say 'no no it's nothing' and keep walking on and pointing out another place up the road. In then end we just ducked into this cafe do get away from her! Later on we found a much nicer looking shop right near where we came into the main street, which we probably would have found quite nicely on our own if we hadn't been obliged to follow her up the steet!

After our mediocre lunch, we did a bit more shopping, and bought a scarf for Baachan and a lovely beaded mobile-phone accessory for me, which Grandma is going to love. Don't worry Grandma, I know exactly where the shop is. I think you are going to adore the red hot chilli pepper one...

We drove to Jusco shopping mall after that. Wonderful spring day drive - with my new iPod FM tuner! Kanji was dj, and he is a softie so we had to listen to 'Numa Numa' several times. He does a mean Gary Brolsma impression. Jusco has a Baskin Robbins ice cream store (since Lena has been asking for a crepe for days), plus there is a new store open there that had some nice Mother's Day presents. Kanji suggested getting something for Mie, since her younger daughter is at university this year, so it's her first Mother's Day without them. Amy, who often goes shopping with Aunty Mie, said that she likes to look at bags and clothes. I said we can't get her clothes, and there just happened to be a nice, pink, Chanel-esque bag there. So we got that for her, and a hat and gloves set for Baachan, and a bath set for Aunty Toyoko, and then I spied some nice jewellery, which Kanji got for me.

He also bought me a top at the same shop I bought the white one yesterday. An indication of the shape of fashion this year is that, when I showed him the rack, he thought it was maternity clothes! No, it's the fashion this year! I said, haven't you seen girls wearing these? No, he doesn't notice young women's fashion. No surprises there I suppose!

There were no crepes at the ice cream shop in Jusco, so we went back into town to the Baskin Robbins there. I had a banana Sundae with triple-chocolate ice cream with fudge, and the girls had the promised crepes. Kanji had nothing, which made me feel fat. Really, that shouldn't be allowed! Men should always eat more so we ladies can feel like we are eating like birds.

We delivered Baachan's present to her, which she liked very much. She needed a new hat, since Amy keeps wearing hers and she said she'd been thinking about getting some gloves. They were driving gloves, with long arms to prevent sun damage. Then went to the culture centre to find Mie and deliver her present - she was there cleaning up after a flower arranging display. After that the kids wanted to play in a park, so we didn't get home until after 5. We rested a bit then went out for dinner, but the kids were so tired they started falling asleep at the table. We finally got them home to bed before 9pm, and I promptly fell asleep too!

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