“From Wachi, Kyoto” by Yoko Fujimoto
The Yura River that runs below our house in Wachi is a beautiful green, clean stream. But Yoshikazu Fujimoto says that it was remarkably more beautiful before they built dams on it.
Here’s some stories from our life in Wachi from late January onwards.
Yoshikazu always walks for an hour everyday along the road around the mountain by the river. Recently, I’ve been walking there everyday for 50 minutes. Yoshikazu sees monkeys almost everyday. I haven’t encountered any yet. Apparently they make fun of females and do bad things to them, so I don’t want to meet any!
The runner in this photo isn’t a monkey.
Sometimes when he sees one on the road, he greets them by saying hello or hey there.
The Yura River is so beautiful, but it pains me to see that parts of the area damaged by torrential rains in September last year are still in a mess. What looks like birds in the trees along the banks are pieces of white plastic. The green stuff stuck in some trees is artificial lawn from the flood plains. The water level rose above 4 metres for that to happen. The damage in our area is not much compared to what they suffered in Oe Town and Fukuchiyama. But the economy and the population here mean that it seems we can’t hope for any action to bring the beautiful river basin back to how it was. I was thinking about what could be done, but didn’t come up with any answers during this recent stay in Wachi.
This morning it snowed and it made beautiful patterns on the river banks.
I’m madly in love with the sea around Sado Island, but I’ve also learned that I’m absolutely captivated by the lively changing rivulets of this river, which appear and hide as they move through the mountains.
Yoshikazu was snacking on a daikon (radish) his mother grew… just kidding.
A monkey came and pulled it out from the vege patch and ate part of it. Recently, almost daily, monkeys come and cause havoc in our fields. There must be a family of them living in the mountain right behind our house. They arrogantly stomp across the roof of our house and go into our vege crops. So we ended up harvesting the rest of the daikon and covering the turnips and onions with nets to protect them.
We cut the bitten parts of the daikon and tossed those parts up the mountain, and we will eat the rest. Yoshikazu’s mother cooks them so they are so juicy and sweet, to perfection. Sorry monkeys, we can’t let you have them!
I’ll return to Sado at the end of February.
The busy season for me has come again with work. I’m looking forward to seeing everyone on my travels this year!
Thanks in advance for your support!。