The most important now 今一番大切なこと。

On the ferry, 3, 7, 12 year old
Inquisitive 9 month old

My two daughters and four grandchildren (ages 12, 7, 3, and 9 months) were here visiting us in Powell River for the spring break. They went back home a few days ago.

All day long, our house was filled with voices of children playing, fighting, crying, shouting, and sounds of toys running, wooden blocks falling, piano pounding….and more and more. The noise was incredible.

After the bye bye chorus, our house suddenly sunk into silence. It felt a bit odd, a bit lonely, a bit sad, a bit happy, a lot relieved…kind of mixed feeling. “Oi vay…” might be the most honest expression.

I, myself, visited my parents with my three young children for a minimum of a few days to a maximum of several weeks. My parents at the time were about my current age. I wonder ..….did my mother feel like how I am feeling now? They used to take us out often to this and that restaurants for dinner. When I think of it, was it an attempt to give my mother some break from caring for such a big family? It must have been really hard for her. She must have had, just like I’m having now, back pains, and dimming eye sights…there are certainly a lot of physical imperfections manifesting at this age.

I had not seen my daughters for six months. When they arrived at the door, I noticed right away that their energy levels were low. Big letters “S T R E S S were written on their faces. They must be standing at the edge, carrying heavy burdens, I thought.

My older daughter has turned 40. It’s the age one’s body starts to go downhill. She is based in Japan, but is living in Canada for one year in order to let her children of 12 and 7 years old experience lives in Canada. All kinds of worries related to schools and language, having to live in inconvenient Lions Bay without being able to drive, having to keep peace with her little sister and the family….must be giving her so much stress.

My younger daughter is 35 and she also has a hard life. She is responsible for a big mortgage, raising two little children, and she has just returned to her work from maternity leave. Her three year old boy is very cute but a big handful. He is at a stage of loud “no!” for everything. Her nine month old girl is like an angel, but her curiosity has no end. She crawls everywhere, puts everything in her mouth. She is almost walking, too. I was amazed to hear that a full time daycare costs $1,900 per child per month!! That explains why I see many grandparents at parks taking care of little ones. If daycare costs that much, what can you do when young parents have/want to work? Something is terribly wrong. You cannot afford anything if you don’t work….don’t daycares exist in order to provide decent care to children so that parents can work? …children are the future of our society, aren’t they? People work, pay taxes, and that becomes the basis of governments and societies managing to function….right? Something is terribly wrong.

I am seriously worried about my daughters’ well being. They have big responsibilities for the wellness and happiness of their children. They have long years to go. I pray that they can stay healthy.

Please, my sons-in-law, take good care of your families. Think, what is the most important, most precious, in your life now, and make that your priority. Together with your wife, create a happy family. Rather than living for your own accomplishments, please take care of each other, and live for today❣️










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Don’t Look Up ドント・ルック・アップ 


Beautiful planet earth
My beloved family in Hawaii
My beloved family in Lions Bay
My beloved family in Japan
Raiden and Tora 🥰

Recently, I watched the movie that everybody is talking about, “Don’t Look Up” at our friend’s home here in Powell River.

A girl who is a PhD candidate discovered a comet which is rapidly approaching planet earth, and calculated that there is a high probability of colliding with earth in approximately 6 months time.

The story was utterly and depressingly realistic. In fact, I have heard that dinosaurs went extinct because of collision of a comet, which created the Ice Age by a huge volume of ash covering the earth blocking the Sun for a long time. How can you be sure it could never happen again? The PhD student and her professor reported this news to the world, and people’s reactions, when they heard this, were amazing. Most of them didn’t believe it. They didn’t take it seriously and laughed. Some business people used the story to make money. Some politicians used the story for their own political gains. Most people just did nothing….even when it became clear that this was truly going to happen. People are unbelievably short sighted and self centered….so depressing and sickening.

I have a tendency to take things on a personal level. My thinking somehow doesn’t easily engage in the direction of social justice or political reformation when I watch movies, dramas, or read novels. I’d rather take the story personally, and think in relation to myself and my life. This movie was not an exception. I started thinking seriously what I would do if I got to know that every being on the earth go extinct in 6 months. I will die, and everybody dies, and everything will be destroyed in 6 months.

Since I don’t have any social status anyway, I wouldn’t be caring what people would think of me. Since everybody dies in 6 months and there will be no life anyway, what would be the use of having money? If I die in 6 months, my health wouldn’t mean much, as long as I would keep myself reasonably healthy for 6 months….might as well eat everything I love as much as I want, do/get everything I want as much as I want….

Wait…. but there are 6 months. I’m not dying right now. Maybe I can spend my money on making my loved ones happy….? I would fly to Hawaii, Lions Bay, and Japan to hold my children, grandchildren, and my dad and my sister as tight as I can…? I would fly to Japan and invite all my family to stay just one last night in a heavenly beautiful hot spring inn…? I would write letters after letters like crazy, letting people know how much I appreciate them, how much I love them…? I would definitely treasure and mindfully live every moment I would be with Neil and our dogs.

As I’m writing this, I have noticed something so stunningly disturbing. I am just as self centered as everybody in the movie. I am thinking of my own beloved family and friends, treasuring my own beloved life and time…..what about all the people who are not directly connected to me and to my life?

It made me re-realize how wonderful my friend “A” is, tirelessly working and actually doing things to improve lives of people who are living in poverty, and “H” who is actually doing so much to bring awareness to people and lobbying to protect vulnerable lives of animals.

つい最近、ここパウエルリバーの友人宅で、今話題になっているドント・ルック・アップ Don’t Look Up という映画を観た。



どうせもともと何の地位もない私だから、今さら自分がどう思われようと関係ないし、6ヶ月後に全滅するんだったらお金なんてあったって仕方がない。6ヶ月後に何もかもなくなるなら健康的に生きても仕方がない? 好きなものをたらふく食べて、好きなものを買って、好きなことをして…

でも待てよ… 今すぐではなく6ヶ月あるんだから、私にとって一番大切な家族たちや友人たちが、最も幸せな6ヶ月を過ごせるようにお金を使うかな?日本に飛んで父や妹や甥姪を抱きしめる、ハワイとライオンズベイにとんで娘、息子、孫たちをかたくかたく抱きしめる… 家族みんなを日本に呼んで素晴らしい温泉宿で思い出に残る一晩を過ごす… 大事な人たちに手紙を書きまくる…感謝の気持ちを伝える…いかに愛しているかを伝える。ニールと犬たちと過ごす大切な大切な時間を噛み締める。

ここまで書いて、はたと思った。結局私も自分中心なことばかり考えているんじゃないか。映画の中の人たちと何も変わらないのではないか。自分にとって大切な人、大切なことばかりを考えて… 自分とつながりのない人や動物はどうするの?


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My first dream of 2022 初夢

Neil and Kafka
Chor Musica concert, Dec. 2021 Neil is the second from right
Lu in the snow

I had a dream. Some bitterness lingered after waking up for quite a while into the morning. What does this dream mean? Is it giving me some kind of message? I wasn’t sure if I should write about it. Neil encouraged me to write….so I’m trying.

I don’t remember many details of the dream, but I’m trying to recover as much as I can. It was something like this….

“ A room somewhere. A cloth couch in the room. I can see a thread of smoke. Why smoke? Where is it coming from? Looks like it’s coming from the couch. Why? What is burning? Oh…the smoke has now disappeared. I have to tell Neil about this when he comes home. He might have idea what was burning. There might be a cinder somewhere on the couch…

A telephone call…. What? Neil passed away? So suddenly? So Unexpectedly?

……But I haven’t yet told him about the smoke from the couch. I was going to, but I haven’t, and I can’t any more. It’s too late…”

What a weird dream. I opened my eyes. Neil was next to me, sleeping and snoring. What a relief.

A thought came to my mind. Yes, all that mundane everyday stuff, boring stuff, some unimportant thoughts, complaints of this and that….it’s kind of important to be able to talk about these things without worrying, without thinking through. It’s kind of precious because talking about these things helps me to be me, authentic me. If the person I talk to suddenly disappears…a chill ran through my spine. I never thought of it before….. I am lucky to have Neil, indeed, someone I can talk to and someone who would listen…

But, everyone will have a farewell sometime. There are many people who live alone. We will, for sure, have a day we have to say good bye. We must prepare for that day, enjoy each other’s presence to the fullest today, now, and forever in this moment. For, tomorrow might already be too late.

My thoughts on the second morning of 2022. What a dream….!



『どこかの部屋。布製のソファがある。細い煙が見える。なぜ煙が? どこから煙が出てるの?よく見ると煙はソファのどこかから出ている。どうして?何が燃えてるの?ニールが帰ってきたら聞いてみなきゃ。あっ 煙が消えた。何かが燃えて燃え尽きたみたい。ソファに焦げ跡があるかも…。


…だけどニールに煙のことをまだ話してない…。話そうと思っていたのに、まだ話してない。もはや話せなくなってしまった… どうすりゃいいの?』





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White Christmas ホワイトクリスマス

Morning walk with the dogs
Sun rise

Only 3 days left in 2021.

I am looking out the window from our house in Powell River. It is a pure white snowland…

Although our plan was to be in Lions Bay and spend the time with our grandchildren, we decided to cancel the trip, because of the Omicron variant of Covid and the exceptionally freezing weather predicted. It was too bad, I needed to go to special stores in Vancouver and purchase some ingredients for the New Years feast. We were looking forward to go dining at our favorite restaurants in Vancouver area.

Disappointing, indeed.

However, the white snow land in Powell River is so beautiful. We are enjoying the house we love, and having a quiet, intimate, and cozy time with my beloved husband and our adorable dogs. They are just such precious moments and I am so grateful.

I was planning to go swimming this morning, but it was snowing with the temperature of minus 14℃. I happily decided to chill out at home.

So nice to have a day like this.

I was looking forward to start a new life in Powell River, partly because I wanted to run away from my fully booked calendar in Vancouver. However, this November and December turned out just the same or worse… it was more than full.

I sang in four choir concerts, I am now a music volunteer person (organ, piano, and choir) at the Anglican Church here, I am exercising 3 days a week, fitness and swimming, I am walking 4+ kilometers a day with Neil and the dogs, and I am poking my head so hard twice a week studying French…… you know…. they are all my own choices….all my fault…..I know. Where is the simple life that I aspired and dreamed of? ….. somehow dissipated into somewhere far far away.

However, there were some positives in my life the last two months. I am not an extroverted person at all, but I was able to make some new friends. Friends who love music, who come to the church, who say hello at the swimming pool, who sweat at the rec center together….. It’s exciting to imagine and look forward to the possible friendship cultivating with the new friends.

And, I have to tell you about the heavenly moments that I cherish. I open the rec center door after exercising, and breathe into my lung to the fullest, the freshest and cleanest air emanated from the tall beautiful trees in the woods surrounding me. A truly heavenly moment….

Many many thanks to all of you for 2021, and have a happy and healthy new year.









憧れていたシンプルライフはどこに? 夢見たシンプルライフとは程遠い生活になってしまったと内心、反省している。




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Immigrant People in Canada カナダの移民たち

School has started for Sumi and Sosuke, our grandchildren from Japan. (at Sumi’s school, Glen Eagles Elementary School. She is in Grade 7.)

Sosuke’s first day of school, at Lions Bay Elementary School. He is in Grade 2.
3 year old Riden and 4 month old Tora in Lions Bay
Snow geese in Powell River
I made 9 pies from our apple trees and 6 of them still frozen
Good beer at a lakeside pub

The summer is gone, and like a door shut behind us, September has arrived, bringing us cold air and much rain. Various classes and activities have started. I, who cannot stay still, have started my busy life again. Not only starting fitness, swimming, and choirs, which I always had, Neil and I started a brand new French class. I have never learned French before. To tell you the truth, I always had this doubt about studying new languages. I know how difficult languages are. Since I’m not a child, it seems impossible to become really proficient at this age. Then why would I bother? Wouldn’t it be a waste of time and money? What am I going to use French for? I had some serious doubts.

I don’t know why, but I had a silly imagination. That was….a French class taught by a strict elderly woman with reading glasses on her nose…..a silly stereotype ….and…..it was totally wrong. The person who was waiting for us at the French cultural center was a young black man with inquisitive eyes and big smiles. He is an immigrant from Congo. Although he was a medical doctor in Congo, he does not have the right qualification to practice medicine in Canada. So he is teaching and assisting French classes in the local schools. He seemed to be a sincere, fun, and patient man, and I liked him!

Thinking back this year, I met several immigrant people from different countries. When I was still living in Lions Bay, I took some personal training sessions. At the time, Covid caused all the fitness classes to be cancelled, and yet, I needed exercising so badly. At the Recreation Centre, R was assigned to me as my personal trainer. R is a young beautiful woman in her 30s, an immigrant from Syria. She is a single mother raising a 12 year old girl all by herself. Often, we engaged in conversations and she would say… “my daughter is getting more and more difficult these days,” or “I’m afraid my daughter is feeling lonely because I’m always working,” or “I have been all alone for more than 10 years I feel so lonely at times.” She reminded me of myself when I was in my 30s. “I know…I do understand your feelings…… I’ve been there. I, too, raised my children in a foreign country by myself, all alone. I, too, wept many nights, feeling so lonely.” I felt some invisible thread connecting R and me. I think of her often, even now, after moving to Powell River. R, please stay well and find lots of happiness……I’m thinking of you.

In July we moved to Powell River. On the moving day, 5 guys showed up to move our furniture and boxes in 2 big trucks. 4 out of 5 guys were immigrants. They were hard working, strong, wonderful guys from Albania, Saudi Arabia, Libya, and Hong Kong. F, the guy from Albania was the leader. My first impression of him was “kind of scary,” because he had sharp eyes. When we traveled in Bulgaria some years ago, we had opportunities to drive beside Albanian borders. Albania was very different from west Europe or even Bulgaria. There were Islam mosques everywhere; villages were humble; and people were looking poor. During the 3 days of our move from Lions Bay to Powell River, my impression of F changed completely. He told me about his 2 children, about how he immigrated to Canada, and about how much he worries about his aging parents who are farming in Albania. He said funny jokes without moving a single muscle on his serious looking face, and I kept on laughing and laughing. He made our move so much fun when otherwise it could have turned stressful and exhausting. Thank you, F, for so much laughs, and thank you for taking good care of my sad looking potted plants.

After arriving Powell River, a young pleasant guy D came to install some blinds in the house. He was a refugee from Syria. He arrived here few years ago, sponsored by some group in Powell River. After finishing school somewhere, he came back to Powell River, and now he is settled down with a wife and job.

Canada is a country like mosaic. You look around and see many different faces, cultures, and languages. They have arrived here as immigrants or refugees, then working hard, although barely making their livings, and trying to co-exist with others in harmony. It is not easy to live here, especially when they don’t have the support or resources of their families. However, most of them put on a brave face, and try to find their place in this society. You need to work harder with lower wages, fight with hidden or occasionally obvious discriminations, be patient and open to new ways, and stay positive and hopeful. I feel like I am receiving energy and hope by getting to know these people. They are certainly contributing so much to making Canada a great place to live.



思えば今年に入ってから私はずいぶんいろんな国からの移民の人達に出会ったな。まずはまだライオンズベイに住んでいた今年の初め、コロナでフィットネスのクラスが閉鎖されたので、パーソナルトレーナーに個人レッスンを受けることにした。私のトレーナーはRという30代の美しい女性、シリアからの移民だそうな。一人で子供を育てながらパーソナルトレーニングの仕事をして一生懸命生きてる…。「子供が反抗期に入って大変なの。」「私がいつもいつも働いてるから子供に寂しい思いをさせてる、」「ずーっと10年以上も1人だったからすごーく寂しい時があるの、」と言いながらトレーニングをしてくれる姿を見ていると私の30代の頃の姿とダブってくる。『そうだよね。本当に。気持ち痛いほどわかるよ。私も異国の地で一人ぼっちで働きながら子供を育てたんだよ。私も寂しくて泣いたことが何度もあった。』なんとなくR というシリア出身の彼女と見えない糸で結ばれているかのような気がしてパウエルリバーに引っ越してからも気になっている。どうか元気で、幸せになってほしい…


7月に引っ越したとき5人の力強い男性が2台のトラックで運送してくれた。そのうち4人が移民。アルバニアとサウジアラビアとリビアと香港からの4人…力持ちでよーく働く素晴らしい若者たちだった。特に印象に残っているのはアルバニアから来たF 。最初に会った時は目が鋭くて怖いような気がしていた。数年前にブルガリアに行った時に、アルバニアのそばを何度もドライブする機会があった。いかにも貧しくて、イスラム教のモスクがあって、ヨーロッパとは全然雰囲気の違うアルバニアの村々は印象的だった。そのアルバニアから来た目の鋭いF。最初の怖い印象が、ライオンズベイからパウエルリバーまでの3日がかりの引っ越しの過程でガラリと変わってしまった。子供が2人いるというF 、奥さんがまずカナダに来てF をスポンサーしてくれたという。年老いた親御さんはアルバニアで農業をやっていて心配だという。真面目な顔をしておかしなことを言って私をケタケタ笑わせてくれる。ただでさえストレス満杯の引越しの日々を楽しくしてくれた。今にも死にそうな私の植木たちさえも嫌な顔一つせずユーモアたっぷり、丁寧に運んでくれて感謝。ありがとうF。

パウエルリバーに来てからも、D という若い、感じの良い男性がブラインドを取り付けに来てくれた。彼はシリアからの難民だという。数年前にパウエルリバーのグループがスポンサーになってくれてカナダに来たそうな。進学のために一度は町を出たけど、卒業してまたパウエルリバーに戻ってきたんだという。


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Why did we move? 引越しの理由

Many deer in our neighborhood 鹿がいっぱい
Texada Island with Raiden タクセーダ島 ライデンと

How many years ago was it?? Hmmmm…. Oh well…..it was several years ago anyway. My beloved nephew was getting married, and Neil and I were attending his wedding in Japan. Just when we were about to depart, Neil fell at a trail we walk the dogs every single day. He broke his ankle! It was too late to cancel the trip. I arranged the house so Neil could survive while I was away, and I flew to Japan by myself. I hurried back home to Canada right after the wedding.

Poor Neil, as soon as he saw my face, he declared. “We are moving.”

“What?” It hit me as a shock. We have just renovated our house! We moved to Lions Bay and it took two years to finish renovating. I loved our house and our neighborhood.

Give me a break, Neil …..!

But, he was right. Realistically thinking, if he could not walk by himself, he could not even go to the front door, or bedroom, or kitchen or bathroom. When you enter the front door, there is a staircase….if you cannot go up and down the stairs you are doomed. You are not going anywhere from the door. And, we did not think of it until it actually happened.

After that day, the word “moving” had occupied a little corner of my head flickering from time to time.

So Neil and I, not quite young chicks any more, definitely growing older, started to think seriously what would be important for us.

Important things would be….health, peace of mind, happiness of our children and grandchildren, friendships, communities, some intellectual and cultural stimulation, life purposes, helping others….etc.etc.

We started to see that Powell River might be a good fit for us. It is close to our cottage on Texada Island. The real estate is still cheaper than other places in the Sunshine Coast.

Long long time ago when I was working in the building product industry, I wrote an article introducing to the Japanese market Canada’s barrier-free houses. While interviewing people for the article, I remember thinking I would love to live in one of these barrier-free houses when I get old.

One day, we met a guy named Gary who sold us a truck camper. He told us that he built by himself a passive solar house. He kindly showed us his house, and we were impressed. We started researching about passive solar houses, and found an article about a “passive house” on Vancouver Island built by a company in Squamish. (Passive solar house is a predecessor of passive house). We contacted the company right away.

Things went very smoothly up to this point, but it was a struggle after struggle from there on. We couldn’t find a builder who would be willing to risk building such a house. Nobody knew how long and how much money was needed to build. We had no idea if we could even afford it.

We came so close to giving up the idea, but kept on talking to builders. In the end, we found a local Powell River builder who was open to give this challenging project a try. We liked the person very well, so we happily threw the dice. We sold 60% of our house in Lions Bay to our youngest daughter. She had just started a family, and wanted a house, but, of course, could not afford one in Vancouver. This arrangement seemed to create a win-win situation. She got a house to live, we got the construction money, and we retained 40% so we had a place to stay while visiting our grandchildren.

So, the construction started. We were so happy, looking forward to live there a year later……then, Covid came. Everything just stalled. People worked from home, shipments utterly delayed. The construction schedule was nullified. The prices of materials skyrocketed…. Our house grew grossly over budget. What can we do? …..Nothing…. we can’t stop now…..

My blood pressure kept on rising for the four years.

Finally this July, we were able to move into our new house in Powell River. After 4 years of waiting we are now living in this little city of 14000 people. Our house is a passive house, no furnace or air conditioning, as well as a barrier free house, accessible with wheelchair.

Look, we are now well prepared for the future!

Neil, you can now have a peace of mind!! (Neil is 68 years old, 6’9” tall and weighs 275lb!!)

It all started with Neil’s injury…but, to tell you the truth, I did enjoy every aspect and every process of the project…..especially designing and choosing materials…..except the money part, of course.

However, what really matters is what happens hereafter. We need to get involved in the new circle of people, make new friends, and start contributing to the new community…..with God’s help….. I feel dizzy when I think of starting all over again from scratch…..introducing myself, finding people I like, getting involved in activities….. Who would be my new friends? What kind of life is waiting for me? Looking forward to it, but at the same time, I am sighing…… How exhausting……😢

何年前だったかな? うーむ… ま、いいや…ともかく数年前にある出来事が起こった。日本にいる最愛の甥の結婚式にニールと私二人で出席することになっていた。出発の間際にニールがいつも歩いている散歩道で足を踏み外して足首の骨を折ってしまったのだ。あんまり急で、結婚式を今さら欠席するわけにもいかず、とりあえずニールが数日過ごせるように支度をして、私は一人で日本に飛んだ。



















Coincidence? Really? 偶然?本当に?

Our first lunch guests in Powell River パウエルリバーで初めてのお客様
Neil found a Tree Spirit in the forest … ニールが森の中で木の精を見つけたよ。
Taking a close look. Looks like a wood carving? 近くで見るとこんな感じ。木彫りの鳥かな?。
Ferry boat going to Texada タクセーダ島に行くフェリー
Beach in Powell River. Sometimes whales are splashing. パウエルリバーの海岸。時々鯨の潮吹きが見えるよ。
Deer family in our backyard, eating apples 庭のリンゴを食べに来る鹿の家族

Two days ago, when we were walking with our dogs along the shoreline of Powell River, a couple passed by. ‘She looks familiar,’ I thought for a moment. Of course, there are many people who look familiar…so, I smiled and kept on walking. ‘’Aaaaah‼️” Voice came from them. Two+ years ago, before the Covid pandemic closed down large gatherings including choirs, she was singing in the same choir in West Vancouver. Though I don’t recall having much conversation with her, I vaguely remembered her face.

We stopped and talked for awhile. “What a coincidence! What are you doing here?”

They said they were camping in Powell River. It turned out that they had lived in Japan for quite a long time. In fact, they met and got married in Tokyo. They camped on Texada Island last year and are trying Powell River this year. They like this area, they said.

Out of 2.5 million people living in Vancouver, 4 people who used to sing in the same choir happened to come to the same spot of the small town of 14,000 people, 5 hours drive away, at the very same time ……

Isn’t this a miracle??

Is this really a mere coincidence?

When I think of it, there are coincidences that happened in my life, that later brought changes in my life.

Some big ones are…..

50+ years ago, when I was only 13 years old, with no English whatsoever, I arrived in Los Angeles. I met a tiny adorable poodle on the road. This encounter led me to meet a wonderful pianist/teacher, and resulted in having music as a huge part of my whole life.

20+ years ago, I was invited to a dinner party. I met a person at the dinner who told me about a business graduate program called Executive MBA in Simon Fraser University. I ended up getting enrolled in the program, and met Neil who was one of the professors there, and now my spouse of 21 years.

We used to go camping to the beautiful Okanagan area. One year, there was terrible wild fire and we went to Sunshine Coast instead. We came to Texada Island and absolutely loved there. We built a cottage and it’s been 16+ years now. And, we ended up choosing Powell River for our retirement because of the easy access to Texada.

It’s amazing. My major life directions were led by some unpredicted coincidences.

I thought of a book I read many many years ago called “Celestine Prophecy.” The message was that there is no such thing as coincidence. The word being used is not “coincidence,” but “synchronicity.” Everything that happens to you has meaning. It was meant to happen. Every being you meet has message(s) for you…. I remember the book very well. It had such a strong impact on me. The surprising synchronicity of meeting my choir friend brought back the feeling of “Celestine Prophecy.”

Life is interesting. Every synchronicity is important and precious. I really need to live my life more mindfully. I need to value each moment and each encounter…..











昔々に読んだCelestine Prophecy (日本語題は『聖なる予言』)を思い出す。この世の中に単なる偶然なんてない。偶然という言葉もcoincidenceではなくsynchronicity という言葉を使ってたな。自分に起こることは起こるべきして起こる。人(人間以外の動物等を含めて)との出会いには必ず意味がある。そんな内容の本で、読んだ当時は強い感銘を受けたものだ。


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We moved! 引っ越しました。

Beautiful Morning Glory flower! 引越しのストレスにも負けず朝顔が咲いたよ❗️
Our new house in Powell River パウエルリバーの新居
Thanks for blooming despite stressful summer….my mother’s cactus from Japan 母のサボテンが今年も綺麗に咲いてくれました。
Ferry boat to Texada Island タクセーダ島へのフェリー
Sunset from our deck 我が家のデッキからの夕焼け
Sea walk in Powell River パウエルリバーの海岸

Never again!

What a stressful summer! Our house is not fully organized yet, but at least I have recovered enough to feel like sitting down to write this blog.

Our July began with never-ending packing. Unbelievable how much junk we had! Then, 2 big fully-loaded 7ton trucks arrived at our new house in Powell River on the 7th. It was the beginning of our endless wrestling with the boxes. We needed to return to our house in Lions Bay where we lived the past 10 years, in order to move in-house. We switched our living spaces with Rutsu. Rutsu’s family moved into the space we used to live (upper 2 floors) and our stuff which didn’t go to Powell River was moved to the ground floor where Rutsu used to live. After the move, we returned swiftly to Powell River, continued our wrestling with the boxes, in the ocean of dripping sweat.

It was a record high temperature this summer. During the heat dome it exceeded 35C-40C in Vancouver which is usually around 25C. A town called Lytton which is 3-4 hours drive in-land from Vancouver experienced incredible 49.5C, and was destroyed by the fire the next day…. Unbelievable worst nightmare….!!

Though nothing like that, I had an exhausting summer, too. Now I can see some light at the end of the tunnel, I’m looking forward to writing my blogs, not long ones but more frequently, hopefully.

Powell River is about 4 hour drive, not including the waiting time for the ferry boats, a coastal town north of Vancouver, with population of about 14,000, a laidback peaceful countryside. Good thing is….I can even walk to the ferry terminal for Texada Island where we have our cottage.

So……to be continued.

The next blog would be…..perhaps, “why we decided to move.”









Thank you, Susan. You are a blessing! ありがとう、そしてご苦労さま。

Last Sunday, May 30th was the last day for Susan as the formal organist of St. Mary’s Anglican Church in Kerrisdale, Vancouver. She has now officially retired.

It’s hard to believe that it’s been already 16 years since I first met Susan. 16 years ago I was an unhappy disillusioned business person, and wondering seriously if I had made a terrible career choice. I used to be intensely involved in my piano career until my early 30s when I was still living in Japan. However, moving to Canada, becoming a single mother to my 3 children, I needed to work in business in order to make a living.

16 years ago, I didn’t know anybody in the music field here in Vancouver. I didn’t know who to talk to. I felt like an outsider, rather lonely and somewhat lost. I knew I had to do something, yet I was reluctant to make any move forward. I must have had too big an ego. One day, my dear friend Ginger, encouraged me to contact Susan. After some time of more procrastination, I finally phoned Susan. At that moment, my life has changed.

I went to see Susan at the St. Mary’s Anglican Church. “Would you like to try pipe organ?” She said. I had never seen a pipe organ close up before. I had heard the recorded sounds, but never known how it worked. She took out music and let me play few lines.

Wow! How shocking it was. I don’t know how to describe it. The vibrations from the pipe organ came running through my body. It was a thrilling sense I had never experienced before. Instantly I was taken.

Ever since that day, I went to see Susan weekly, diligently for 15 years….until Covid regulations made it impossible. I dreamed of playing my favorite J. S. Bach pieces on this magnificent instrument……..

Pipe organ is an extremely difficult instrument. Not only hands and feet play notes independently of each other, but create sounds together on the multiple keyboards. Feet have another important role of controlling boxes which manage volumes. There are pistons that connect to each and every pipe. Each pipe has sounds of different instruments like strings, trumpet, oboe, flutes…. You have to choose sounds you want for each section, phrase, and voice, and assign pipes independently or by combinations. The pistons need to be pulled or pushed while hands and feet are busy playing the notes. It is just incredibly complicated. I often felt like my head was just about bursting.

Susan was always patient, sincere, enthusiastic, positive, and encouraging. Despite feeling overwhelmed, I often came home feeling happy and hopeful. I couldn’t wait to try out and practice again. It gave me such a joy.

As I got to know Susan I quickly realized her life as a church musician was extremely challenging. She had unbelievable schedules and responsibilities…..both at home and work. Even in difficult times, she never stopped being loving, caring, and giving to people around her. She was always available and willing to help.

Susan is my role model. I am so grateful that I got to know her. It was truly a blessing for me. Ginger, thank you so much for connecting me with Susan.

My sincere congratulations to you, Susan, for your long and successful career. Thank you for being my mentor for all these years. Please continue to be my mentor and my life-long friend.

5月30日日曜日はスーザンのSt. Mary’s のオルガニストとしての最後の日だった。St. Mary’s はバンクーバーのケリスデールにある大きな聖公会の教会だ。



St. Mary’s に行って初めてスーザンに会った。スーザンはいきなり「パイプオルガンを触ってみる?」と言った。私はレコードは聞いたことがあるもののパイプオルガンなるものを間近で見たことなどなかった。どんなふうに音を出すものやら全く検討もつかなかった。スーザンが楽譜を取り出して私はおそるおそる数行弾いてみた。








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Witchy Woman

In preparation for moving, I was sorting out our stuff in the house, and found some old CDs of rock music from 1970s. Wow…..I didn’t remember I had these CDs. I should listen to them in the car. I stack them up near the driving seat.

Eagles, the first thing came out was Witchy Woman. It took less than a second to be completely immersed in the song. The melody, the rhythm, the words…everything, instantly came back to me. I was amazed how clearly I remembered. It has been 48+ years since this song was on the weekly radio hit chart.

Not only remembering, I was transported right back to “17 year old me”. When I look at myself in mirror, I see a 65 year old woman. When I turn on this CD, I am all of a sudden 17. It’s a magic, Isn’t it?

So, tell me. Where did my 48 years go?

17 year old me was in Los Angeles just finishing Grade 12. I was looking forward to my new life in the University of Southern California. I was a bit sad about parting with my high school friends….just a little bit. The bluest sky, dazzling sunshine, pleasant breeze, perfect temperature……..yes, California was beautiful, just like Vancouver today. My father drove me around in his huge yellow Chevrolet Impala. I slide in to the passenger seat. I tune into KISS FM. Witchy Woman comes on. I crank up the volume and sing along……loud.

Music is mysterious. It sinks deeply into myself, glues tightly to my psyche, and without me noticing, it becomes part of me….

Who would have thought I would be sitting here in the car listening to this song, after 48 years, in Canada, in Vancouver, with Neil and my two dogs?


イーグルス。最初に聞いたのがウイッチーウーマンWitchy Woman。1秒もたたないうちに曲にのめり込んでしまった。メロディーもリズムも歌詞も何もかもがたちまち戻ってきた。何ともハッキリと鮮明に覚えている自分に驚いた。もうあれから48年もの歳月が流れているのに。




17歳の私はロスアンゼルスにいた。ハイスクールを終える直前だった。南カリフォルニア大学(USC)への入学が決まって、新しい生活を楽しみにしていた。ハイスクールの友達との別れがちょっぴり悲しかった。真っ青な青空、眩しいばかりの太陽、心地よい微風と完璧な温度、そう、今日のバンクーバーのようなカリフォルニアの気候。父の運転する巨大なクリーム色のシェボレーインパラに座ってKISS FMをつけるとよくこの曲が流れてきたっけ。ボリュームを上げて一緒に歌ったな〜。