Tea Bushes and clouds

Monday, November 5th, 2012

I was just taking a walk around my neighborhood when I found myself surrounded by tea bushes. The harvesting season is already over and the bushes have been neatly trimmed while the ground below them is scattered with fallen leaves and strewn with mown grass, both of which help to fertilize the bushes. I also noticed some dainty white tea flowers among the trimmed leaves of the tea bushes. I love their round shape. They belong to the camellia family, but tea flowers are much smaller than other camellias.

 

The weather was perfect for taking a walk. I am really lucky in having sweeping views of Suruga Bay in front of me and tea terraces stretching up towards Mt. Fuji behind me. Since it has got colder Mt. Fuji is now wearing its white cap. I saw a line of cloud above the peak. When Fuji has umbrella-like clouds floating above it, that means it’s going to rain. At the same time I saw this strange cross-shaped cloud in the western sky. I don’t know what it means though. Anyway, according to the weather forecast, it’s going to be rainy tomorrow.

Mt. Fuji in 2012

Sunday, July 15th, 2012

Her name is Atsuko and she has taken me to mountains a few times.

She has climbed 97 of Japan’s 100 Famous Mountains.

(Nihon Hyakumeizan) She is going to climb the remaining three mountains this summer and autumn to make it 100. She climbed Mt. Fuji twice last week.

  The first time she climbed, she was not in perfect condition since she hadn’t slept well the night before. She gave up going to the top and came down from the 8th station.

 A few days later, she climbed again. The weather was beautiful and she was in great shape. She took some photos on her mobile phone.

They were taken from the 7th station, viewing the 5th station , where people start to climb. You can see a part of Houei crater. She made the summit on that day.

 She said that she started to climb at 8:30 and reached the summit at 13:55.

On her way back, starting 14:20 and reaching 5th station at 16:45.

It seems rather a fast pace to me. She saw two big snowy patches remaining on her way to the top. In the last few years I heard the snow patches have got smaller and this could be due to global warming, but perhaps things will get back to normal if we are fortunate. 

 Many people hope to climb Mt.Fuji and they think it’s an easy mountain to climb but some people are not well-equipped nor well-prepared and end up asking for help. Also people are not always in perfect condition. Even Atsuko gave up going to the top for the first climb of the week.

 She saw many climbers from foreign countries and enjoyed talking in English. The interesting thing is that many people in Fuji where I live don’t climb Mt. Fuji. They say the mountain is to view and worship and not for climbing. Some people may think that it’s only an excuse for being lazy though. In any case Mt. Fuji is a special mountain for everyone. Both Atsuko and I hope we can preserve this great nature untainted.