My four BFFs that I took on an adventure today. That's where the NBD comes in. I had many, "NBD we're just __________," moments today. If pictures bore you, turn away. :) Ome has quickly become my favorite place on earth.
Jude requires much bribery if Sean isn't with us. Simon did our 7-11 run for us and came out with tiny Coke bottles for the little two. They don't get soda very often around here, so the entire days haul of photographs look a bit like a Coke commercial.
On the way to Ome, I had a long talk about not being typical Americans. Don't be loud and boisterous. Don't be obnoxious. There moment to shine was here, "On the other side of the bridge is restaurants where people are eating outside. Be respectful. Be quiet. Don't be 'those Americans.'" That led to Jude bolting and his brother tackling him at the end of the bridge. This, of course, led to Jude screaming as if he was being murdered Ah, kids. The great humblers.
At one point, the sweetest elderly Japanese couple stopped us on the walkway and wanted to chat. We did a lot of giggling, hand signals, and eventually Google translate. Do you know what doesn't work with kids interjecting in the background? Google translate. The only one of us that understood anything was Titus. He kept tugging on me, "I know what she's saying, Mom." And I'd say, "Then answer for us!" At the beginning of our chat, I only had the little two. When the big two came trotting up, they could barely contain themselves. It was awesome. The old man kept patting each of their heads as if unpacking a life sized Troika doll.
Titus told them all of our names and ages. I need to get Jude in Yochien so he can help us collectively not look like a buncha morons. The wife laughed when Google translate managed to catch, "My husband speaks better Japanese than me." At the end, she said her only English phrase, "Nice to meet you." As we were leaving about an hour later, I spotted them further down the walkway and gave a little wave. When Jude turned to wave also, the little old lady was so excited that she was jumping up and down waving at us. It made my day and I think it made hers, too.
I don't think this cat spoke English.
His skipping stone selection:
Titus' smile is everything(and the way Jude was scaling the eight inch tall boulder!).
I texted Sean this picture.
He texted back: It was in November. Just keep your voices down.
I replied: Have you met your children? Time to go!
I tend to push limits when it comes to picture taking. I don't have a happy middle ground. I always tend to take just a few too many as evidenced by the mugs in this shot.
But I never get pictures of all four! I was on a streak today and I wasn't willing to let it go easily.
Look at that kindness.
See how lovingly he's dragging his baby brother up the rock?
Just to push my luck, I tried for a few timer shots.
On our way back to the car. What looks like a sweet hug is actually Jude threatening to throw his brother off the side of the trail. Maybe I'll forget that part years down the road.
You can get anything from a vending machine in Japan. My kids come running to the sound of coins dropping into a vending machine in the same way Gus goes running for his squeaky toy.
I'd like to come back in a week or two and see it all in bloom. The boys agreed that that is a good idea. :)
This is the end of the pictures. Sean told me not to post them all lest folks get bored. I took 560 pictures today. I thought this was whittled down pretty well.
We broke many etiquettes today. I had to reroute and turn around quite a few times on our way home. It was a bit cold and the flowers weren't as in bloom as I'd hoped, but the boys and I had an awesome, awesome day. I said no big deal several times today, but this stuff is a pretty big deal. A huge deal. It's everything.
I would rather come home with 500 pictures and the memories captured than $500 worth of anything money can buy.