June brought...outdoor excursions to rivers running through canyons that looked like China,
hydrangeas in bloom everywhere,
enough rain to grow moss in every crack and crevas,
rice planting season,
and a trip to my Island! These are tera-tera bozu, little ghosties made of cloth and cotton that are hung in the house during rainy season and prayed to to keep the rains at bay.
Visiting Akusekijima is probably the best part about my job. I take an overnight ferry and arrive just in time for mid-morning classes. An idyllic school day ensues: completely enthusiastic students who love English class after class and then after school I get led around the island by a pack of 6-11 year-olds who show me all the new baby cows and goats. Preparing to roller blade the bumpy island roads. Good thing for elbow, knee and wrist pads.
Itsuki petting a new baby cow. Itsuki's mother would only let him walk around with us if he drew sketches of things he saw along the way for his homework. He had this great sketch board around his neck and would stop and concentrate so hard on a tree or a cat in the road.
That's my school off in the hills.
And the market near my house. I am extremely lucky that I live right near a market where I can get the cheapest seasonal produce in town and all the folks know me there as the token foreigner who buys the fishes.
I did not buy these kinago, a special fish of Kagoshima. But they looked really nice and shiny in their box.
The fish lady.
My favorite neighborhood fruit stand.