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remember once upon a time?  remember how we used to hear these many times when we were younger?  well, what if, you could relive those moments again and again?  what i mean is a kind of time travel?  all you need are a few things.  one, pictures.  two, a way to get in touch with your good, perhaps even best, friend.  three, imagination.

think real hard and thank everyone who has ever helped you in the past.  it could have been just a few seconds ago when s/he did so.  it could have been 12 years ago when you first met.  it really does not matter.  the point is, be thankful.

now, after you do that, open up a book from that place.  every time you read a line that sounds familiar to you, do not discourage the wave of emotions.  it is good for you to be happy.  what works for me is to read murakami haruki and selections of academic text.  sure, call me a nerd, i don’t care.  what matters is that the memories are there deep inside and it is healthy to call them up once and again to the surface.  in fact, it is not only healthy, but heplful.

take my recent pictures for example.  when i was a gaijin living and working in japan and my daughter went to day care, we used to take our empty pocari sweat and calpis and sometimes “ecc” lemon to the kita jusco to recycle.  i am thankful for the memory of doing this with my daughter.  this past summer i saw these same bins.  they made me smile.  and, just like the saying goes, ”スマイル...0円.”


About charleswinstead

having lived in japan for 3.5 years i wish to "go back to the island" as often as i can. i lived from 1999-2003. i went back in 2007, then again in 2011. i am a full time teacher, so the best time to go for me is during the summer vacation. it works out well because i love the sensational feelings i get in japan during the summer...especially playing taiko and eating lots of ma-cha ice.

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