So, summer really did arrive so early this year. Our rainy season - Tsuyu- was over before July even arrived. Apparently that is the earliest in the history for the Tsuyu to end as usually it goes on for a couple weeks longer.

Things with nature, there have been just so many record breakers. Biggest snowfalls or rainfalls in history, earliest cherry blossoms blooming in xx years, coldest day in the month of xx, etc etc. We hear it all the time and it's a real worry...almost everything is a record breaker these days when it comes to the weather.

In the western part of Japan over the last weekend, there have been torrential rains causing massive flooding and landslides that destroyed tens of thousands of homes. A horrendous natural disaster like this seems to be happening almost every year now. Can we only pray and hope there will be no more...?

Today my thoughts are with those who suffered from this disaster, may many more people will be rescued and be reunited with their loved ones.

It is still supported to be rainy season in Tokyo but we have been having very sunny and very warm days it feels like the real summer has already arrived. It's not even July yet. I was just reminded of our two weeks trip we had back in March when we travelled from the very cold wintery Tokyo to the really warm Brisbane, Melbourne and then Singapore. This picture here was taken on our first day in Brisbane, I thought it was end of summer there but it was still really hot and it was very much like how it feels in Tokyo right now. It kind of felt a little strange that this feeling of being in a hot and humid weather seemed somewhat more familiar than experiencing it since last summer, but now I know that is because this is already my second summer this year. Tokyo's summer is very harsh, it's not nice. But I guess I have to face it,  oh summer please please be gentle....

There are many places I really love in my own city, not many of them are actually that difficult to get to but I never really get to visit them any more. You know when you know that you can visit any time you tend to leave it till later and then you would just forget. Or maybe that is just my excuse.
Hara Museum has always been my favourite, it's small, has a lovely garden, beautiful old architecture, and it's located somewhere that you really have to aim to get there. I visited there last summer after many years, nothing really had changed but one big change I noticed was that we were now allowed to take photos inside. Most of the Japanese museums didn't allow photography inside but it's changing and you'd notice that you can take photos at many of the places, often with some limitations.
I don't remember how hot that day was when we visited here but it looks like it was a very hot day, that light and shadow tell it don't they.

So I went looking through my old photos (and got a bit carried away actually) and found so many fond memories from the past years, of all the places I went to and all the beautiful things I saw and enjoyed. It seems nothing has really changed but so much has actually changed and I missed the good old days. I mean, we all know that things always look better in distance.

For many years I kept saying I am too busy, I have been working so hard and hadn't really had time to enjoy other things for a long time. And that was why I could not keep up with blogging, or so I thought, but maybe that is not true. It's not always so easy to keep doing something for a long time, to keep the passion and motivation. There can always be excuses, for not being able to keep doing something, I don't know for how many times I have thought but now I really want to come back here and start posting again whether or not anyone is still around to read it.

So JUNE. It's rainy season in Japan, it rains a lot but it doesn't rain hard like it does in the rainy season in the tropic. It's not my favourite season, but I like it because it is the season for the beautiful hydrangeas too. You would spot hydrangeas here and there and everywhere if you walk around Tokyo right now, on the side streets and in the parks, and these days there are so many varieties, different types in different colours - they are just so beautiful and the rain makes them look extra pretty. 

Another thing I always think of June is the Ume - Japanese plums. For many years until some years ago it was our tradition to make our own Ume-shu plum wine, we used to get the beautiful fresh organic ume delivered from the farm. I don't drink umeshu any more and we have no space to keep the large jars so I just stopped making it. When I see the fresh green ume which are only available at this time of the year I remember those days, maybe one day I will make it again.

Hydrangeas and Ume plums, they are the things that make me happy in the month of June :)

Happy June!

Hello BLOG! I have been thinking about you and wanting to come back but why is it so hard???? I have a lot that I want to say but I don't know what to post... Maybe I should just go back to when I first started this blog 9 years ago, how I didn't care or didn't even think there would be anyone who would want to read it.

So I am starting to dig all the photos I meant to post and share, hopefully they will make it here soon!