Amber enjoys her dinner of chilled soba ざるそば. I had the unusual experience of having to order in Japanese at the restaurant this evening so as to make myself understood.
A banner outside the Japanese supermarket Capita'n, promoting products from Japan's Nagano Prefecture 長野県, aka Shinshū 信州 (the old provincial name). The building in the photograph on the left is Matsumoto Castle 松本城, a National Treasure 国宝 (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Matsumoto_Castle). Those who knew me when I was living in Japan are probably aware that I spent an awful lot of time in Nagano, and Matsumoto City 松本市 in particular. I wish all the memories of that time and place could be pleasant ones, but unfortunately they're not. To pardon my French, if I hadn't fucked things up royally, I would probably be considering the place as my second home now. Then again, if life hadn't taken its usual twists and turns, I might also be saying the same of Tōkyō 東京, Takasaki 高崎 in Gumma Prefecture 群馬県, or even Fukuoka 福岡.
As the saying goes, we make our own beds and therefore have to sleep in them, which is why I'm in central Taiwan, and not any of the above-mentioned places. Of course, I wouldn't have my wife and daughter, either. Still, it would be nice to have the best of both worlds, even if the prospect is extremely unlikely to ever come about. So, I'm looking forward to drowning my
sorrows memories in this six-pack (well, five-pack, actually. Pamela gave a bottle to our downstairs neighbor) of Scuttlebutt Homeport Blonde Ale, out of Everett, WA. 謝謝 7-Eleven Taiwan!