April 30, 2003

Kaika's eyes and ears are still at an early stage of development, everything fuzzy (at least that is what most will say -- we of course don't know for certain). But every once in a while there are flashes of recognition that startle. Moments before I took this picture, Naoko was saying "Papa" to Kaika, and there were ever so subtle murmurings of recognition from Kaika, he making little sighing noises. Now mind you it could have just been a coincidence, but....

Another thought engendered by this: My brother and I grew up calling my father by his first name "Jim," and still do (my mother has always been "Mama"). It just sort of happened that way. And I've always thought it was cool that we did (not to mention that for some reason "Dad" grates on my ears). So naturally I've been envisioning that Kaika will eventually call me Kurt. It's still way too early to be pondering all this, but I have to admit I kind of like the sound of Papa.

April 29, 2003

in Tokyo. Starbucks is no smoking, thankfully.

April 28, 2003

The teddy bear in the background is a hand-knit gift from my mother, and I have taken to calling him Pierre (I think it's the scarf). My mother made a bunch of these for patients in a Honolulu children's hospital. The frog in the foreground I bought earlier this afternoon. When you press its stomach, it makes a series of frog-like "ribbet" sounds. The idea is that it is supposed to teach babies cause and effect, as well as help introduce them to the sounds of nature.

This is the old one, which they wouldn't let me keep.

lat = & lon =

April 27, 2003

Before the start of a private lesson. (lat: & lon:

April 26, 2003

We're just lying here, listening to a CD of lullabies ("Kumbayah," which my mother used to sing to me when I was a child, just finished playing), ourselves being lulled to sleep. I just realized that this is the first picture of all three of us together. All my cameras and all my film, and the first family portrait is taken with a mobile phone. Imagine that.

after a long day. First, Kaika met his great-uncle and -aunt. Then, he went on an extended stroll around the neighborhood in his new stroller. His first day outside, not including going to the hospital earlier this week. You'd be tired too!

Don't leave home before checking your socks! Especially when visiting old-school relatives.

meet relatives.

April 25, 2003

This is just the kind of thing I wanted this moblog for, little inconsequential reflections I would otherwise forget: on the way to the train station just now, passing a mother and her little girl, the young girl pointed at me and said eigo (which means "English language"). Obviously she was instinctively associating me with her English teacher (it's quite common for kids here to start learning English at 2 or 3). I started to laugh, being genuinely amused (better than "foreigner" at any rate), while her mother uttered a quiet sumimasen ("sorry") as I passed. Perhaps you had to be there, but there was something heartening about it. (no picture)

First time here without Naoko. It is hard to keep up with her Japanese!

Maybe "reading" to him will make him sleepy?

April 24, 2003

Yeah, it's my birthday today. All of 38 years old. These cakes were from my father-in-law �iNaoko and I are eating two of them now -- oishii!�jHe also gave Naoko and I money to cover the baby car seat and stroller we bought this past weekend. Naoko gave me a DVD documentary called "Tokyo Landscape 1945-1955", produced by NHK and featuring lots of natsukashii (nostalgic) footage of Tokyo during that time. So all in all I'm quite happy. And of course, this is all just icing on the bigger cake I'm looking at as I type this, Kaika.

Omiya Station (Saitama). If this link works, then you should be able to view a map of the place from where I took the above photo. However, when I did a test earlier, it seemed to put the X about a block away. Of course I am no longer here, having moved on in the time it has taken to write this. Catch me if you can...

April 23, 2003

for progress? You have to wonder. This building was a hideously ugly apartment building for workers at a local factory, and their families, that I passed everyday on the way to the train station. Seeing the children's bicycles and assorted toys strewn about in what passed for a play-yard, I couldn't help but feel a tinge of sadness for the children that lived there, though of course I had no more insight into their lives than the above photo, which is to say, none. And I have to wonder, what will replace this rubble, on this spot, and in the hearts of those children.

5,999,996 more to go (oblique tip to MJ)

April 22, 2003

Took this yesterday but forgot to post it. My old mobile phone. And my first one too. Changed the way I communicated, even though I took its awesome power for granted much of the time.

...from the hospital. Received a clean bill of health from the doctor. Yokatta!

Kaika on the way to the hospital.

Someone needs to get the marketing department on this one. (Sorry about the scanlines).

April 21, 2003

I'm not sure this tells you anymore about my new phone than the photo ofthe box I posted earlier, but here's a photo of the new phone. Taken in the bathroom at work (notice the roll of toilet paper in the background).

...that makes this possible.

I suppose we'll just have to see.

Watch this space shortly. もう�ュし待ってください�B我��o来る�H

Images and thoughts from Japan, captured and uploaded via my mobile phone. For a (slightly) bigger picture, see my main site Hmmn.

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Meeting a friend
Kaika and friends
Getting a new gaijin card
Kaika in car
A lull in the day
Taking it easy
Naoko with Kaika
First day out
Today's lesson
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