Cooked dinner for Okaasan.
Sat and chatted with her for about an hour - fish, her father bought crab somewhere and brought it home, didn't eat fish wartime, crab, her father's truck driving job, the Kawagoe to Omiya bus route....lots of good old familiar stories. It's fairly easy to get her on these Hamster Wheel stories.
I used to stress about doing these dinners.
It's ok now.
I just think of it as one more Conversation I have to do in a working day - so yesterday I did 3 classes of English - and then came home and do one more - in Japanese.
It's quite hard to FINISH the dinners. Okaasan is waffling on about stuff and forgetting to eat. It is rude (even for me!) to actually stand up and start clearing plates while she is still eating. So I faked a trip to the toilet, and went to the utility room to wash my hands, and got a clean dish cloth - and finally used the "My step-mum in England isn't so good this week, I have to phone her now" excuse.
And got out of the kitchen. Kitten chaos awaited upstairs.
Okaasan usually clears the table and rinses dishes. Sometimes she washes them. But usually she just rinses and forgets to do it "later". We do it the next morning.There is some Japanese saying about: Even if your parents have died, don't rush away from the table after eating. Or something. Okaasan is always quoting this to us as we try to escape after a meal with her! Brash young modern people that we are: we eat and go.
And kittens??? Cute and into everything.
Just 10 minutes ago there was a Goldfish/Plant/Kittens Disaster as I came upstairs and found Chichi's leg suspiciously WET! The golfish tank lid, the plant on top of it - all crashed into the tank. The goldfish fluttering nervously under his weed surrounded by bobbing bits of plant soil. Ok for Amazon piranias maybe, probably bad for a fish who likes his filtered water.
So. He's gone down to the kitchen for the moment, while I think what to do next.
Maybe goldfish and kittens need time away from eachother. I have been spraying the kittens with water whenever they climbed onto the tank - but....didn't work enough.
And the guy of the house? He's away in glorious Niseko with the sunshine teaching young HongKongese the joys of skiing. Lucky bugger.