The Changing of the Leaves in Japan This year it will be my third year to witness the changing colors of the leaves in Japan. Each year they have been wonderful to see. I’ve made sure to make the most of my time here in Japan. This year, I won’t be able to travel too far to see the changing leaves but I’m lucky to live and work in such a beautiful part of Tokyo where there are many parks I can walk and jog in. This is my favorite time of year. The weather is perfect; it’s not too cold or too hot. Back in Ireland, this time of year is very difficult for many people. The weather is windy and cold and it rains a lot. The days are long and dark and people tend to stay inside a lot. It is dark when you wake up and dark when you leave work. People need to stay optimistic during the winter months. In Tokyo, I love strolling through the parks with a nice hot coffee, taking in the pretty scenery. Sometimes I have to pinch myself and remember where exactly I am. I’m very lucky to be where I am and I try to not take this for granted. Life is always changing and you just have to move along with it.
At the end of October, Japan celebrated Halloween. But this year, celebrations were pared down and made simple. Most people stayed at home, and I spent my Halloween weekend watching horror movies on Netflix. A friend of mine recently got a new camera so went to nearby Saitama to take pictures of the forest, Tokorozawa Sakura Town, and the LED manholes with anime covers that light up at night. It doesn’t rain much, and there are many days with a lot of sun, but the days are getting shorter and colder. The leaves of the trees are also starting to turn red and orange. I’m looking forward to autumn in Tokyo, but I’m not a fan of the cold weather!
September 23, 2020 Summertime is almost up! Autumn is taking over, and it’s gradually becoming colder by the day. Since I come from a tropical country, I’m not used to the cold. Last year, I experienced my first winter in Japan, and it was freezing! I had to wrap myself in several layers just to stay warm. This year, I’m more than ready to welcome autumn and winter. In fact, there are many things I’m looking forward to in the coming months. I can’t wait to see the changing colors of the foliage, from vibrant green to rich reds and oranges. I can already imagine people in the park cycling under the hail of falling leaves. I also can’t wait for Halloween! I noticed last year that Halloween-themed parties and parades were popular in Tokyo, but I think this year, it would be better to stay home and read books or watch horror movies. In fact, I’m already planning my own horror movie marathon for Halloween! One thing’s for sure—the cold weather is a good time to indulge in hot and spicy meals!
The summer is now over and I am delighted that is it autumn. It was very difficult in Tokyo with the high humidity levels. Sleeping at night was not easy and I relied on my apartment air conditioning system to get me through the long summer days. In Ireland, the summers are less humid and much cooler but it also rains more which I don’t particularly miss. Now that autumn is here, the leaves will start changing color and the weather will be a much bearable temperature. I love autumn because the leaves are so vibrant and colorful and I can wear nice, cozy wooly jumpers. There are so many beautiful parks in Tokyo, which always look so magical during this time of year. It was a long summer but I’m excited about autumn and what joys it will bring.
The Long Rainy Season
It seems as though the rainy season in Tokyo is particularly long this year. When I think back to this time last year, I was preparing to travel home to Ireland for a summer holiday and I remember the weather in Tokyo being hot and humid. This year, it’s cooler and everyday seems to bring the chance of rain with it. Luckily, I’m used to the rain, as it is such a common occurrence in Ireland. During these wet days, time can be spent watching movies, series on Netflix or reading a good book. It’s also a good time to be creative and nothing makes me happier than sketching or painting. I usually sketch famous people and try to capture their personalities and characteristics as best I can. It’s good to have hobbies, as these are the things that keep us happy in life. It’s important to pass the time doing things we enjoy, which in turn, will help the rainy season pass by faster.
Spring break this year gave me a lot of time to get household chores done, including stocking up my fridge and rearranging my furniture. Now, I know why schools in Japan start in April. The spring season is a great way to start something. The appearance of cherry blossoms and the warm weather make spring the perfect time to “turn over a new leaf.”
This expression in the English language means to become a better person or to give more effort in doing something.
So, this spring, I also decided to give more effort in learning Japanese. It’s very difficult since it’s so different from English and Filipino, but I was able to learn more Japanese words and expressions by answering textbooks and watching several Japanese films. I’m hoping this will increase my Japanese vocabulary!