Sunday, 13 April 2008

Cherry Blossom Party

Mercifully the weather behaved itself and we could enjoy ourselves by the Susuki River once again. The drizzle did come later as forecast, but by then the lightweights had already gone home!

We had a really good turn out, as you can see from the photos, and were joined by the Yokoso Matsumoto group who got their BBQ going next to ours. A good deal of mingling meant that new friendships were made and old ones rekindled. Darryl, for example, met Mine again, whom he used to teach with many moons ago. Mark came along with his wife & son - we`d not met for the best part of a decade!

There was a definite feeling of "the next generation" to the BBQ/picnic - a positive baby-rash actually, showing that we, the expat community are doing our bit to reverse the demographic trend. It was great to see some of our friends' children for the first time, and for them to interact with each other. Others have shot up since we last saw them.

Highlights of the day included Phil's son trying to get a noise out of a didgeridoo; the Vietnamese lads mine-sweeping remorselessly; Tana chatting up all the single Shindai boys; Milton bringing a carpet; Jim & Rupert explaining the hardships of fatherhood to a rather deaf audience. And I must mention 'little' Yuki, who I've not seen for about 8 years - she lives in Nagano now after a couple of years in Singapore. Now a mature, charming & very-well spoken HS girl - another reminder, if I needed one this weekend, of the aging process!

Thank you to everyone who came, who took a turn burning stuff on the barbie, contributed food & drink & charcoal. A lovely afternoon - so let's do it again soon?!