Sunday, July 06, 2008


I am sitting outside with my laptop in awe of the wonders of modern technology.

Yesterday Mrs. Goodneedle was talking about enjoying leisurely breakfasts outside with her husband so this morning I made some french toast and a pot of coffee, dug out some fruit from the refrigerator and Tetsu and I ate outside. He is now doing some gardening while I enjoy the sounds of nature around me and blog. Birds chirping, crows cawing. A farmer out cutting grass with a hand held trimmer. An occasional car going by and a quick hello to neighbors out walking their dogs (and the racket Choco can make when she spots the dogs).

Since I'm out here, I'll show a couple pictures from my viewpoint.

This is at the side of our house right off the living room (on the left in this picture. The house behind me is our neighbor's.) It is the only area that has a "garden" and there is an area for us to park our two cars next to the front door. When we moved in 16 years ago this area was just weeds and Tetsu tried to put in a lawn. Not enough sun (we are next to the forest and the area is between our house and the neighbors) and the lawn didn't last a season. We also had big plans for putting in decking but the cost to have it done! That idea went out quickly too. Then Tetsu decided he could put down a patio and he laid his plans. Actually not too many plans. Dug up the yard and leveled it by eye (it slopes a little). Had a dump truck bring a load of gravel that he spread and then pounded down by jumping up and down on a board a billion and one times. He says it is the only thing his extra weight has ever been good for! Next he spread some sand and then laid out bricks in a haphazard pattern and voila! A home made patio! It has always served us wonderfully and Tetsu has gotten great satisfaction from seeing his handwork.

As you can see, there isn't much space between our house and the house next to us. About the width of a car. Not much, huh? But by Japanese standards this is a fair sized plot of land. In Tokyo one cannot own land at all because of the astronomical prices and even in the next city over, Tetsu and I couldn't afford anywhere with even this small amount of land. As I keep saying, we live in the back woods of Japan and so we have this small plot to call our own and play with as we like. (And the whole forest behind us that we can PRETEND is our own.) You can see how our neighbor who lives in such close proximity to us might not appreciate Choco's barking. Choco has her kennel and deck around the corner from this area and next to the forest and hopefully our house and a few of the trees dulls the barking for our neighbor.

We are happy with our little spot of nature and yesterday I also bought a few flowers to add a bit of color to the place. Come join me again!


Mary said...

What a lovely garden Tonya, the perfect spot for breakfast and checking email. The patio is wonderful also - Tetsu did a nice job.

artfilstitch said...

Your patio and gardens are beautiful, the breakfast menu sounds scrumptious. Tetsu and you are a blessed couple...each helping the other. Thanks for the grand tour!

Amanda said...

What a star Tetsu is - though I hope you don't tell him so too often! It sounds as if you are lucky to have your little bit of garden and plan to make the most of it. What's your climate like? Can you sit outside all year, or for only a part of it?

Julie said...

What a nice spot. Do you have problems with pests like mosquitoes?

meggie said...

Tetsu is very talented to create that lovley space. You are so beautiful Tanya. Thankyou for the pics.