Rain rain rain

Rain. Water. The source of Life itself.

Tsuyu. It's that time of year again. It's not exactly like the monsoons of southeast Asia, or the hurricanes and tornados of most of the United States. Japan's got the typhoons, too, but that is later in the summer and hails the coming of fall and the coming winter.

Tsuyu. It is more like a once-a-year tide, except that this tide lasts for around three weeks, more or less. And the tide isn't just high tide, it ebbs and flows, mostly flowing in the afternoons.

Tsuyu. Sometimes it is like clockwork. 3:00 PM. The sun fades to darkness as the cloudy sky suddenly turns ominous, like a curtain suddenly being drawn shut. First, a few droplets. Then, a crack of thunder. The thunder, seemingly in the distance, suddenly cracks! Then, like a door that has been kicked in, the water comes pouring down. But often, like grandfather's old clock, it doesn't exactly tell time, but it tells the passing of time.

Green green green

Japan's national color is red, the color of the rising sun on it's distinctive flag. But the color that distinguishes its countryside - the mountains, hills, valleys, and ridges which comprise more than 70% of its surface, is a deep, rich, luscious green. Not the green of most trees or produce, but the deep olive of moss.

It is the tsuyu that brings the nation to life, even though more and more the people tend to shy away from the rain and hunker down indoors. In a traditional Japanese house, there is a wooden corridor, usually running down the south side of the home, facing away from the public eye, where one might sit comfortably away from the rain and yet taking it all in. Feeling the rain, letting it seep into the roots of the soul, refreshing the spirit and giving it strength to take on the long hot summer ahead.

3:00 PM

Today's tsuyu outburst was like clockwork. Someone must have cranked ol' grandfather's clock just right this morning. Tick tock, tick tock. Three o'clock. Snap crackle and boy did it pop!


Enjoy a good green day!

mikekato image


United States

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