Thursday, 10 March 2011


Readers in Japan will get it: "Ara-fi" means "Around Fifty"......which I guess with two days to go until the big FIVE OH - I am becoming minute by minute!
(There was a TV drama I think recently here which coined the phrase Ara-fo...for a woman who is "around forty").

Busy week as I head into it : busy but good. I am just thankful I can physically/emotionally BE busy and do things I wants to/need to. Illness and domestic dramas do that to you - make your appreciate being able to put one foot in front of the other.

So not much Okaasan news really. Bit hard for a blog entitled Okaasan and Me.

But lucky for me that Yujiro has been home, alternating between watching TV/internet porn(!!!!!! who forgot to close a window eh????!!) and shopping/feeding mother/doing the housetasks I ask him to...spring holidays start soon in Japan and he'll be back out on the ski slopes shortly.
In the meantime I am enjoying letting him take over all the housetasks, while I enjoy work and life beyond the kitchen.

I suggested he tried to interest Okaasan in the hotel hair salon by showing her the leaflet I'd brought home. Her hair is long and straggly, and often dirty and smelly.
He tried. But she said hotel salons are expensive and that she wants to try out a place near the local station..which will be great if she really does...last year she opined that the local hair salons in our neighborhood were no good...downtown salons are higher standard etc.

We don't care either way, but a haircut would be a good idea.
The hula dance class have a performance in June and she needs a haircut before then.Anyway we'll leave the topic again for a while and try again in a few weeks, or try and steer her into a salon if we are walking with her near the station.

Apart from that I've been busy with guests. We had Couch Surfers staying - two friendly, Czech ski instructors; then I took two American women out for tourist sightseeing as a friend's husband has brought them and their 10 year-old sons to Hokkaido for homestays with local Japanese families; then there is work, snow, cats - and STILL trying to get the English School website up and running.

Oh - and a local government video narration about tourists and manners....trying to politely remind Chinese tourists NOT to take the whole platter from a hotel buffet etc.....

Lots of life. That's fine.
I've watched two programs on TV about dementia, and heard from two students that their parents have had bad falls in the I feel we are VERY lucky with Okaasan at the moment.
She may smell and contribute very little to dinner conversations - but she doesn't take up much of our time!!!!

How's THAT for selfishness!

Onwards to 50. I can be even more selfish then...I think it's allowed.


  1. Otanjobi omedetou gozaimasu, Oyomesan! I had a father and a father-in-law who had dementia at the same time. I'm looking forward to reading more!

  2. Ara-fi ! Hadn't heard of it. But then I guess I'm 'Ara san go'.
    wow, I just read Jessica's comment - two in one go. Bloody hell. I don't know how you ladies do it. I go insane dealing with a fully sane mother in law. credit to you.

    Hope birthday plans are going well.


  3. Glad everything is well! Happy Birthday and welcome to the fifties! I have some time yet, but heard all about the ara-fo when I was there. Then it was jus-fo and now?!!

  4. Happy birthday! I hope it's fun and relaxing, and free of Okasan drama.

  5. I'd heard of Ara-fo' happy Birthday! I hope you enjoy it, just think, it's a new beginning! :)

  6. Just checking on you! Hope you're all safe!