We spent most of our free time outside. Partly due to our 500 square feet of living space and partly because our dogs love to sniff and frolic and partly because we love exploring nature.
In some ways a forest in Japan is not so different from one back home. I’m from Michigan, a place with mixed coniferous and deciduous trees, full of deer and raccoons, with moss-covered rocks, with steep hills and abundant waterfalls. I live in Tochigi, and all of that is much the same, but add monkeys to the fauna and bamboo to the flora.
Yesterday we went off the beaten path to find a quiet place where our dogs could go wild without us having to keep watch for traffic (that Falcor tries to run into) or other dogs (that Enid tries to put in their place) and it was lovely. It was after 3pm, when dusk starts settling in, and the woods were eerily silent. Not a soul in sight and only distant monkey sounds to taunt the dogs but no up close monkeys to maul them to death. Perfect.
Here come two little
dogs blurs, under the torii.
At Jakko Falls.
Always collecting sticks.
The moonrise. So lovely.
I took this picture in the parking area, as we walked to the car and the dogs did one last run and our girl collected a few last rocks. Then the wind kicked up and all the trees started groaning and Dave *playfully* called to her ‘Better get to the car! There are ghosts out here!’ So naturally she immediatly began running (because of the ghosts) and immediately tripped and fell on her face (because of the rocks) and lay on her stomach scrambling, screaming ‘NO! Ghosts gonna get me! Help! NOOOOOOOOOOO!’ By the time (mere seconds) Dave got to her and picked her up her face was tear streaked and panic-stricken and she cried about the ghosts until we got in the car and *luckily* found a snack in my purse. I write this story here so she can find it one day and have an explanation for her paralyzing fear of wind/ghosts.
And thus ends a classic family outing.