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Monday, 30 December 2013

Bridge & Tunnel: The Real Japan - Page 5

Written by Scott Haas
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    Karaoke rooms lined a corner of the hallway beside us and the sheer delight evident in the ataxic men crooning songs of romance and longing had poignancy.

    One man sang of how everyone had left him, but noted that the imaginary woman to whom he was singing remained by his side.

    The next morning we went to the lavish breakfast buffet.  Families, dressed in either yukata or Hawaiian pajamas, made certain that they had their fill of eggs, sausages, pancakes, salad, fruit, and even spaghetti!  Spaghetti for breakfast?  Why not?  

    Husbands, wives, grandmothers and grandfathers, boys and girls, teenagers, nieces and nephews, families lined up in a frantic rush to get their fill.  

    I thought of hostages released from captivity enjoying their first meal in freedom.  The stress of daily life cannot be underestimated, and the satisfaction that the food provided these hard working people moved me.  I even saw a man from the karaoke bar the night before, the same singer who had crooned about the woman who stood by her man.

    After leaving the resort, we drove to the base of a mountain and rode a cable car up to the top.  The deciduous forests had not yet changed turned red and yellow and orange, but the green was no longer that of summer.  Darkness hinted, and a pair of hawks rode the currents.

    At the top, we had views of the Pacific, small harbors, and post war factories.  Industry was apparent; hard work was etched into the landscape, which reinforced my impression of the lives of people we had met so far.

(Page 5 of 6)
Last modified on Monday, 17 February 2014

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