<   2008年 01月 ( 12 )   > この月の画像一覧

ウィンチェスター・ミステリー・ハウス Winchester Mystery House

f0146342_733023.jpg
サンノゼはこれといった観光名所のないところですが、ここは一見の価値があるところです。19世紀後半に建てられたウィンチェスター夫人の家、ビクトリア朝の大邸宅でなんと部屋の数は160。でもこれには物悲しいお話があるのです。ウィンチェスターといえば、ライフル銃で有名な名前ですが、その大金持ちのウィンチェスター一族に嫁いだサラ夫人、不運なことに、娘を生後6週間で亡くし、夫も急逝し、自分の運命を嘆き悲しみました。

ある霊媒の話によると、ウィンチェスター銃で命を奪われた人たちの恨みが原因とのこと。それから逃れるためには、ひたすら家を造り続ければいいと言われ、38年間、24時間365日、夫人が死ぬ日まで工事は続いたそうです。

去年の暮れ、じいじとばびぃを連れて、初めてそのマンション・ツアーに参加しました。とても車椅子では無理なところなので、舞姫とケーシーは近くのショッピング・センターでお散歩です。160部屋のうち、103部屋を回る一時間強のツアー、案内係のお兄さんから「くれぐれもグループから離れないように、二度と出て来れませんよ。」と警告を受けての出発です。雨模様の寒いお天気も手伝って、邸宅の中はなにか薄気味悪い雰囲気が漂っていて、ドラ息子の顔もひきつっています。l”...”l

行き先のないドアに、大きさもまばらな部屋の数々、迷路のような階段と、まさしくミステリー・ハウスですが、驚いたことに、そのウィンチェスター夫人はかなり頭のいい人で、当時の最新技術を取り入れた暖房設備、下水設備などを入れたそうです。

寝室は40部屋、台所は6カ所に、階段は40カ所、暖炉は47カ所、エレベータが3台、大きな客間もありました。でも一度も客人を呼ぶことはなかったそう。それが今は何万人の人が訪れる観光スポットだとは、皮肉というか悲哀というか。

ツアーは他にも、夜に懐中電灯を持って参加する、裏話ツアーなるものもあります。13歳以上限定なので、ドラ息子が大きくなったらまた行くことにします。怖いからいやだというかもね (^_^;)。

Although there is not much for sightseeing in San Jose, this is a place worthy of visiting, a Victorian mansion of Mrs. Winchester build in the last half of the 19th century. There is a wailing story behind the construction of this huge house with 160 rooms. Winchester is a famous name for rifles and guns and this is the very family, a millionaire firearm manufacturer, that she was married into. Unfortunately, she lost her daughter six weeks after birth and her husband died young too, sad enough for Mrs. Winchester to lament her own destiny.

A spirit medium attributed all this tragedy to the spirits of those whose lives had been taken away by the firearms and told the widow in order to get rid of those spirits she should keep building rooms to her house. So the construction began and kept going on 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, for 38 years until the day she passed away.

At the end of the last year, we joined the tour with Jiji and Babi for the first time. The mansion was by no means wheelchair accessible, so my dancing princess and Casey took a walk at a nearby shopping center. The tour was about 65 minutes long, taking us through 103 rooms out of 160. “Make sure to stay with the group or you’ll never find a way out.” The tour began with this warning by the tour guide who was a young man. We felt a spooky atmosphere drifting here and there in the mansion, helped by the rainy and cold weather. My dragon boy looked so nervous. l”...”l

Doors to nowhere, rooms of various sizes, maze-like stairs. It was indeed a mystery house. However, to my surprise, Mrs. Winchester was a very clever woman. She introduced modern technologies in her house for that time such as heating and sewer systems.

The mansion had 40 bedrooms, 6 kitchens, 47 fireplaces, three elevators and staircases in 40 places. There was also a huge guest hall, which she never invited anyone to. Now that the place has become a sightseeing spot that attracts thousands of people, should I say it is an irony or sorrow?

There is another kind of tour held at night, called “Behind the Scene Tour,” which we can join with a flashlight. It is only for 13 years old and up, so I want to go there again once dragon is old enough although he may say no. (^_^;)
f0146342_745477.jpg
f0146342_75824.jpg

[PR]

by danceofdragon | 2008-01-29 07:12

小さな大作 A Tiny But Big Project

f0146342_148489.jpg
「これもやっと完成しました!いやー大変でした。」

というのは冗談で、実はこの色鮮やかなビーズの名刺入れは、義姉の作品です。義姉の家は、リビングルームの一角がアートセンターになっていて、いろいろな手芸、美術の道具や材料があります。絵を描くのも上手で、彼女にかかると壁でさえ一つの大きなキャンバスに変身!編み物もキルトもお手のもの、幅広い趣味の持ち主なのです。会うといつもそれぞれのプロジェクトの話で盛り上がります。

このビーズの作品は、ビーズを一つ一つ糸に通すというものすごい根気のいる作業の賜物。私も一時期ビーズに燃えましたが、どうもうまくいかず断念。これからは義姉の応援に回ることにします。

実は義兄は陶芸家、地元のアート・ギャラリーには義兄の作品が売られています。工房と化しているガレージには、いろいろな粘土やろくろや窯が置いてあります。そう、夫婦でアーティストなんですよ。

“Yes, I finally finished this, too! Was that hard or not?!”

Well, I’m just joking. This is actually the work of my sister-in-law. A card case made of beads of vivid colors. In her house, at the corner of the living room is her art center where she has various art and craft supplies. She has a broad range of interest in art and craft. She is good at painting pictures. Once touched by her, even a wall turns into a big canvas. Knitting and quilting, piece of cake! Every time we meet we just keep talking about what each of us is up to.

This card holder is the product of tremendous amount of perseverance, threading beads one by one. Although I once got so enthusiastic about beading, things didn’t work quite well for me and I finally gave up. I will designate myself as a cheerer-upper for her.

Actually my brother-in-law is a ceramist, whose work is always displayed at a local art gallery. There is a kiln, a potter’s wheel and all kinds of clay in his workshop, which is in their garage. What an amazing couple of artists I have as in-laws!!
[PR]

by danceofdragon | 2008-01-27 14:09

顔文字 Letter Faces

以下はドラ息子作成の顔文字の数々です。いつも私がブログで(^_^;)の顔を描いているので、興味津々。「僕も作りた〜い。」とコンピュータを占領され、ひとしきり遊んだあとの作品です。ブログに活用させてもらうことにします。

(`...’)  (‘<>’)  l”...”l  (“o”)  (`+`)

(‘-`)  !”o”!  (l__l)  (“=”)(”=”)

Faces above were made by my dragon boy. He got so curious to see me always put this face, (^_^;), in this blog. He said, “I want to make some!” and occupied my computer for a while. Here they are. I think I can make use of them in the blog.
[PR]

by danceofdragon | 2008-01-21 15:01

最近の作品 My recent works

f0146342_14255741.jpg
やっと完成にこぎつけました、舞姫のベスト。完成まで約半年かかったでしょうか、とりあえずクリスマスに間に合いました。作りながら「やっぱり派手よねー、デザインを変えた方がいいかな。」、「いや舞姫なら着こなせるか。」と思い直して編み続けるというパターンの繰り返しでした。どう見ても金魚か鯉って感じです (^_^;)。こうすればよかった、ああすればよかったと反省点だらけですが、それは次作に生かすことにします。しかしさすがゴージャスな舞姫、派手な服がよく似合うのはなぜ?

もう一つ、その後に短期間で一気に仕上げたのが車椅子用の膝かけ。大量にある余った毛糸をどうしたものかとずっと思案していて、やっと閃いたのが膝かけ。編みながら、裏地をどうすればいいのやらと悩んでいるうちに、また閃きました。そうだ裏も同じように編んでリバーシブルにしよう!というわけで、こうなりました。計画性のない作品ですが、毛糸が一気に片付いたのは爽快です。

*膝かけの写真、左二つが表側、一番右が裏側。一番左の写真は、霧の中にすっぽり入った朝、珍しい現象に思わずパチリ。

I finally did it, a vest for my dancing princess. Was it about six months that took me to finish this? At least I made it before Christmas. While working with this, I don’t know how many times I said to myself, “Isn’t it too flashy? Should I change the design?” Then I thought, “Well, princess will look good anyway,” and kept knitting. But it looks like nothing but a goldfish or a carp to me (^_^;). I have lots of “I should have done this, I should have done that” kind of reviews about this vest. I will be smarter next time. Indeed, the vest looks nice on my gorgeous princess however flashy it is? I wonder why.

There is also a blanket for the wheelchair, which I intently finished in a short period of time after the vest. I had long wondered how I could use up the considerable amount of left-over yarn. Then one day, the light bulb finally went on in my head. I started knitting and kept going on, not knowing what kind of lining to put. The the light bulb went on again. I could make it double-sided, a reversible blanket! Now this is what I ended up with, the product of an unplanned project. But I felt so good to get rid of all the extra yarn at once.

*The pictures of the blanket below: The two left ones show the front side of the blanket. The right photo shows the back side. The left one was taken in the morning when we were completely in the midst of a fog, an unusual phenomenon that I couldn’t help taking a picture of.
f0146342_14261555.jpg

[PR]

by danceofdragon | 2008-01-19 14:27

新年会 New Year Party

PHPという組織があります。障害をもつ子供とその家族を支援してくれるところで、親向けの勉強会、プレイグループ、情報提供などの活動をしています。スタッフがほとんど障害児をもつ当事者ということもあり、名前もペアレンツ・ヘルピング・ペアレンツ(Parents Helping Parents)、それでPHPというわけです。

そのPHP内に、日本人家族を支援するグループがあり、日本語で情報を提供したり会員同士の交流を促すイベントを開催したりしています。私も会員ですが、兼スタッフとして会報の編集のお手伝いをしています。先日恒例の新年会が催され、今年も家族で参加してきました。

今年は、自閉症の子供たちで構成されている音楽バンドの演奏がありました。「上を向いて歩こう」を熱唱する子、ドラムのバンドや、チェロ、ギター、ダンスと盛り沢山です。全部で15人くらいいたでしょうか。途中でいなくなったりする子、隣の子を手伝う子など、心温まる演奏でした。ある日本人のお母さんが先頭に立って作られたバンドだそうです。

この新年会の目玉は昼食です。ボランティアさんたちが腕を振るってくれる日本の味の数々。今年もおいしくいただきました(写真を撮ればよかった!)。食事はジャズの生演奏をバックに、としゃれてます。今年はミュージシャンである私の友人夫妻に出演をお願いしました。下の写真にもありますが、子供に混ざってケーシーもすずで参加です(^_^;)。どうしても盛り上げたくなる性分みたい。

マジシャン兼ピエロも登場、子供たちの目はくぎづけです。尺八とお琴の音色に日本の雰囲気を味わい(これも写真を撮りそこねた!)、最後におみやげ配布とくじの抽選会でお開き。盛り沢山の内容で心もお腹もいっぱい、今年一年がそんな年だといいな。

There is an organization called PHP. PHP provides children with special needs and their families with various services, including workshops for parents, play groups, and resource sharing. PHP stands for Parents Helping Parents, which explain that most of the staff are the parents of a special need child/children.

In PHP is a subgroup to support Japanese families, which provides them with information in Japanese and holds gatherings to encourage interaction among members. I am a member of the group and also help editing its newsletter as a staff. New year party is one of the annual events and we joined it as usual the other day.

There were performances by a musical band consisted of about 15 autistic children. It started with the solo by a boy who enthusiastically sang “Sukiyaki Song.” Next was a drum performance by several children, followed by cello, guitar, dance, etc. One boy disappeared for a moment during his performance. Another was helping the kid next to him. It was a very heart-warming moment. I heard this band was originally started by a Japanese mother.

Lunch is a big attraction of this party, various kinds of Japanese cuisine courteously prepared by volunteers. We enjoyed them as usual (I should have taken a picture!). Lunch time is also classy with a live jazz performance. This year, I asked one of my friends and her husband, who are musicians, to perform. As seen in the picture below, Casey did a bell part with other kids. (^_^;) He just couldn’t help doing something to boost the party mood.

A magician-cum-clown came too, who made kids captive of his show. We enjoyed some Japanese atmosphere watching Shakuhachi (bamboo flute) and Koto (Japanese harp) performance (I missed taking a picture again!). The party finally ended with giving away souvenirs for kids and a drawing. Our hearts and stomachs got so full, which I hoped to continue for the whole year.
f0146342_10388.jpg

[PR]

by danceofdragon | 2008-01-17 15:15

ブック・レポート Book Report

f0146342_1348329.jpg
2週間の冬休み直前、ドラ息子には宿題がありました。「ブック・レポート・ピザ」と言って、本を1冊読んでレポートを書くというもの。3年生になってから初めての大きな宿題です。

ピザが8切りになっているイラストの中に、本の名前・著者、本のテーマ、舞台、登場人物とその役割、あらすじ、好きな場面、感想等をそれぞれ書き込むようになってます。そしてその裏には、雑誌から本のテーマや描写を連想させる写真や言葉を見つけて、切り取って貼付けます。

「いやぁ、こんなことできるのかしら。」と一瞬途方に暮れましたが、本人曰く、本は既に読んだのを選んだので内容もわかっているとのこと。二人の男の子が、悪魔になった担任の先生を、校長先生が変身してなる「キャプテン・アンダーパンツ」というヒーローと一緒にやっつけて、いい先生に戻すというお話。「なるほど単純でいいかも!」

問題はいつやるか。平日は通常の宿題だけで大変なので、週末しかありません。しかしいつものことながら、ドラ息子に鉛筆と消しゴムを用意させて、椅子に座らせるだけで私の体力気力は半分消耗します。始めてからも、鉛筆と消しゴムはすぐに行方不明になるし、文字通り飛んで行くし。読める字を書かせる、意味のある文章を書かせる、もう意識がもうろうとしてきます。一体いつになったら自力で勉強できるようになるのやら。

ともあれ、一番難しかったのは、やはりあらすじ。とにかく長くてもいいからと、話の流れを自分の言葉で全部書かせました。本人は泣きながらもやり遂げたのは驚きです。それを10分の1くらいに凝縮する作業は、かなり私の手が入りました。

雑誌から連想する言葉を探すのも、最初は難しかったけど、やっているうちにコツがわかってきて、「dangerous(危ない)」「tough(タフ)」「amazing(驚くベき)」「problem(問題)」などを見つけることができました。写真は躍動感、恐怖感なんかが伝わるのを選んでは、はさみでチョキチョキ。わりと楽しかったかな。

いやいや親も鍛えられます。次の大きな宿題はどうやら動物レポートのようです。先生、くれぐれもお手柔らかにお願いしますよ(^_^;)。

Right before the two week winter break, my dragon boy had an assignment, “Book Report Pizza,” which was to write a report on a book. It was the first biggest homework in third grade.

There was an illustration of a pizza, cut into eight pieces. Into each piece he was supposed to write: the name and author of the book, book’s theme, setting, characters and their roles, plot, his favorite part, and what he thought of the book. He also had to cut out words and pictures from magazines that could be associated with the story and description of the book, and glue them on the back of the pizza.

“How can we do this?!” I was momentarily at a loss, but according to dragon he had already picked a book that he had read before, which meant he already knew the whole story. The story was something like this: two school boys beat their teacher who has turned evil, with a help of “Captain Underpants,” who is in fact a transformed hero of their principal. Then the evil teacher turns back into a nice person. “Well, simple enough. It may not be so bad after all.”

The question was when we could work on it. Weekdays were already busy enough because of his regular homework, which left us only with weekends. Anyway, as usual, having him sit in a chair with a pencil and eraser in hand is extremely exhausting. Half of my energy is gone by then, physically and mentally. Once we are at work, the pencil and eraser start disappearing or they literally fly away. It makes me almost unconscious just to have him write sentences that make sense with recognizable handwriting. I have no idea when he will start studying on his own.

Anyway, the hardest part was writing the plot. I told dragon to write down the whole story in his own words however long it would be. He was nearly crying but it was pretty amazing that he did it. I did most of the task to summarize it into one-tenth.

It was hard at first to find associated words and pictures from magazines, but as we got the hang of it we spotted quite a few words such as “dangerous,” “tough,” “amazing,“ or “problem.” We picked pictures that could convey dynamism or scary feeling, snip-snapping one after another. I guess it was fun after all.

Homework certainly gives parents tough time. It seems that next assignment will be animal non-fiction report. I hope the teacher won’t be so hard on us (^_^:).
[PR]

by danceofdragon | 2008-01-13 13:49

サンノゼの日本町 Japantown in San Jose

f0146342_3185240.jpg
じいじとばびぃを連れて、サンノゼの日本町に行ってきました。かつては日系人の拠り所として栄えたところ。古き良き日本の面影を残す日本町ですが、今は閑散としてちょっと寂しい感じです。以前は日本の食材や物はここでしが調達できなかったそうですが、今では他にも日系スーパーはあるし、私たちもほとんど行くことはなく、かつでの賑わいは想像するしかありません。

でも昔ながらのお豆腐屋さんやお饅頭屋さんを見ると、とても懐かしくなります。「サンノゼ豆腐」で有名なお豆腐屋さんは小さい間口。店の奥には四角い一丁豆腐がびっしり水の中に並べられています。豆腐一丁がどれくらいの大きさかなんてすっかり忘れてました。こんなお豆腐屋さん、日本でももう滅多に見ることありません。夜、お鍋で湯豆腐にしていただきました。お饅頭もおいしかった。

戦前にはカリフォルニアで40カ所くらいあった日本人町、現存しているのは、サンフランシスコ、ロサンジェルス、そしてサンノゼの3カ所だけだそうです。

*写真のお寺は、西本願寺の別院。

We took Jiji and Babi to San Jose Japantown, which once flourished as a foothold for Japanese-Americans. Although we can see some remnants of good old Japan, the town seems to be a little deserted. We can only leave to our imagination how lively it was. It used to be the only place where people could find Japanese foods and goods. Nowadays, there are several Japanese grocers scattered in the area. We hardly ever go to Japantown.

But it was very nostalgic to see a tofu store and a manju store still being run in an old-fashion way. The tofu store is famous “San Jose Tofu.” In the back of the store with a narrow front, tens of one-cho size tofus were neatly arranged in the water. I completely forgot how big the one-cho size was. It is hard to find a tofu store like this even in Japan nowadays. We enjoyed boiled tofu that night. Manjus were pretty good, too.

I read there used to be about 40 Japantowns throughout California before the World War II and only three of them have remained to this day; in San Francisco, Los Angeles, and San Jose.

*The temple in the photo is Nishi Hongwanji-Temple Betusin.
f0146342_320318.jpg

[PR]

by danceofdragon | 2008-01-12 03:20

嵐(教訓)  Storm - Lesson Learned

パッと視界が明るくなって、冷蔵庫などのモーターがウーンとうなり出す、電気が戻って来る時って、なんだか家が息を吹き返すような感があります。「停電のまま一夜を過ごさなくてすむ!」飛び上がって喜びました。復旧に力を入れてくれた電力会社の人に感謝感謝です。すぐに舞姫をお風呂に入れました。フリーウェイが一部使えなくて、渋滞に巻き込まれたケーシーがやっと帰って来た時には、心底安心しました。

それにしても、普段当たり前のように送っている文明生活。それもこれも電気がないと何も成り立たないということを、まざまざと思い知らされました。嵐から4日経った今も停電しているところがあることを思うと、我が家の被害はなんてことありません。

それでも心身ともに疲れました。かなり動揺していた証拠に、なんと舞姫のおむつをねじってつけていたのです。それが原因のアクシデントも!こんな間違い、舞姫生まれて以来です。「なんてバカなことを」と反省して付け替えたおむつ、それもまたねじってたのです。気が遠くなりそうでした。ごめんね舞姫。

そうそう、ドラ息子の活躍ぶりには目を見張るものがありました。嬉々として裏庭の片付けを手伝ったり、舞姫をトイレに連れて行く時も懐中電灯で先導してくれたり、頼もしい限り。本人はただ楽しくてやってるだけですが。そう言えば、自分も子供の時台風が来るの待ち遠しかったなぁ。停電が終わって残念がっていたけど、その途端にコンピュータ・ゲームに飛びつく姿を見て、はて、どう解釈するべきかと悩んだ私でした(^_^;)。

*写真は嵐が去った後の空。近くの図書館から。

All of a sudden, things lit up in front of our eyes, and the refrigerator motor started to groan. Having power back is just like having the house come back to life. “We don’t have to spend a dark night!!” I leaped for joy. I could not thank the power company enough for their restoration effort. I gave my dancing princess a bath right away. When Casey finally came home after getting stuck in the traffic due to the partially blocked freeway, I was really relieved.

This incident harshly made me realize every aspect of our life could not exist without electricity, the civilized life we usually took for granted. Considering there are still places without power four days after the storm, I should say our hardship was nothing.

Still it was hard enough for me to get exhausted physically and mentally. I made a horrible mistake to prove that I was pretty much shaken. For the very first time since princess was born, I twisted her diaper when putting it on her, which led to “an accident!!” Horrified with what I had done, I changed her diapers, and, to my disbelief, it was twisted again. I almost fainted. “Sorry, princess.”

Anyway, I should mention the impressive work of my dragon boy during the crisis. He joyfully helped me putting things away in the backyard. He guided princess to the bathroom with his flashlight. What a great job! I knew he was only having fun. I remember getting excited too in my childhood every time a typhoon came. Dragon was disappointed when power came back but immediately he ran to the computer to play a game, making me wonder how I should interpret this(^_^;).

*Photo: The after-storm sky from a nearby library.
f0146342_148833.jpg

[PR]

by danceofdragon | 2008-01-10 01:48

嵐(電気のない7時間) Storm - Seven Hours without Power

嵐の日は、起きた時から一抹の不安が。バナナが残り2本しかなかったのです! 実は前日に新しいドアの取り付け作業があって、それが予定以上に長引いて一日買い出しに行けなかったのです。ドアの取り付けが前日だったのは幸運だったとして、バナナは舞姫の命綱。ケーシーは嵐の中仕事に行ってしまったし。

朝から断続的な停電が続いていたけど、10時半頃とうとう本格的な停電に。テレビもつかない、電話も使えない、コンピュータはもちろんインターネットに接続もできない、携帯電話はあるけど残り少ない電池。一番情報が必要な時に限って、唯一の情報源がラジオとはなんとも皮肉なものです。

外は雨風がますます強くなってきます。裏庭に放置してあった物干し台やバーベキュー・グリルなどをドラ息子と片付けました。バスケット・ゴールもいつ倒れてもおかしくないくらいで、あわててブロックを乗せたり周りに置いたりしました。二人ともびしょ濡れ。

停電で暖房器具が全く使えません。ラジオによると復旧は翌日になる覚悟をした方がいいとのこと。暖炉にくべる薪も調達しなきゃ、、。幸いコンロはガス式なので、うどんスープは大丈夫、舞姫のもう一つの命綱です。

3時頃、ようやく雨と風が落ち着いて来た頃を見計らって、ドラ息子と買い物に出ました。近くのスーパーは停電しているけど開いていて「ホッ」。閑散とした薄暗い店の中で、バナナや薪、食料を冷やすための氷、ドーナツを調達。夕飯はファーストフードでもと思ったけど、どのお店も閉まってます。ケーシーに帰りに夕飯を買って来てもらうように頼みました。

ガレージに置いてあるキャンプ用品の中からランプやヒーターも持ってきて、電気のない夜にむけて備え万全!? やっと一服する気分になり、ドーナツとホットチョコレートで温まりました。舞姫もお風呂がお預けになったけど、頑張って大人しくしてくれてます。外も中もだんだんと暗くなり、本格的に寒くなってきた6時頃、「さあ、そろそろ暖炉に火をつけようか。」と思った瞬間です。(続く)

Since I woke up in the morning there was one thing that kept bothering me. We only had two bananas left! We had the new doors installed the day before, which took longer than they had expected and I couldn’t go grocery shopping. I would say it was fortunate the doors were done before the storm but bananas were a lifeline for my dancing princess. Casey had gone to work.

After a few sporadic blackouts, we finally lost power around 10:30. No TV, no telephone, no computer, no internet, of course. I had a cellphone but with little battery power in it. It was so ironic that when we needed information most we only had a radio to count on.

Rain and wind were getting stronger. My dragon boy and I put away the laundry stands and BBQ grills left in the backyard and put a few cement blocks on the basketball hoop to support it and keep it from blowing down. It might have been blown down anytime. Both of us got soaked.

Now there was no source of heat. According to the radio, it was likely that we would not get the power back until the next day. We had to prepare for spending the night in the dark. “We need to get some fire logs, too.” It was a good thing that our stove is gas operated, making it possible to heat up noodle soup for princess, another lifeline of hers.

Around three o’clock, wind and rain had finally decreased and dragon and I went out for shopping. To our relief, the store nearby was open even without power. In the very quiet store under the dim lights we bought bananas, fire logs, ice to keep the food cool and doughnuts. I wanted to buy some fast food for dinner but all the stores and restaurants were closed, so I asked Casey to buy something on the way home.

I took out a lamp and a heater in our camping gear stored in the garage and were we ready or not for the dark night!? I finally felt like having a break and we made ourselves warm over the doughnuts and hot chocolate. Princess had her favorite bath time on hold but she tolerated the situation very well. It was getting dark inside as well as outside and coldness was getting severe. A few minutes before six, the moment I thought it was time to put the fire in the fireplace, it happened. (to be continued)
[PR]

by danceofdragon | 2008-01-08 23:42

嵐(年初の訪問者) Storm - Visitor of the New Year

f0146342_1420547.jpg
年が明けて間もない1月4日、大きな嵐がやって来ました。朝から昼過ぎまで強い雨と風。我が家は7時間半の停電にも見舞われ、大変な思いをしました。翌日の新聞によると、この地域では1995年以来の規模の嵐だったそう。

あちらこちらで洪水や崖崩れが起きている様子をニュースで見ると、サンノゼ周辺の被害はたいしたものではないことがわかります。風が強くてとても外に出られなかったのですが、それでもサンノゼの最大風速は時速47マイル(75km)。すごいところでは105マイル(170km)だったそう。想像もつきません。最終的に停電になったのは全地域で150万世帯。いまだに電気が戻っていないところもあるそうです。

ここ数年の極端な水不足を考えると恵みの雨ではありましたが、私としてはかなり動揺して、疲れ果てた一日でした。(続く)

*写真は,嵐が本格化する直前の家周り。

On January 4, not long after the turn of the year, we had a big storm. Heavy rain and gusty winds throughout the morning and afternoon. Our house had a blackout for 7.5 hours, giving us a really hard time. According to the next day newspaper, the storm was the strongest since the one that hit the area in 1995.

Watching news showing floods or landslides in various places makes me realize that San Jose was not necessarily a hard hit area. Although the winds were so strong that we could not go out for a while, the fastest wind gust in San Jose was only 47 mph. It was 105 mph somewhere else, just beyond my imagination.
Overall, the number of households and businesses that have had blackout eventually reached 1.5 million. I hear that there are still places that have not had the power back yet.

Considering the extreme water shortage for the last few years, we should be grateful for the rain. However, it was quite an experience for me, very shaking and exhausting. (to be continued)

*Photos: Around the house when the storm was about to get worse.
[PR]

by danceofdragon | 2008-01-07 14:22