nightmares and notes

yu1.jpgI dreamed the other night, that I looked at myself in the mirror, naked, and saw that I’ve acquired a tan. Not just your average light tan, but the kind of you see on models pretending they’ve spent their summer holidays surfing the big waves somewhere in the southern oceans. Perfect tan, that is. Not overburned, and in addition with absolutely perfect bikini lines. Even my hair looks like it was exposed to whatever the models expose theirs to to get that cool ‘messed up in salt water’ -look.
And, mind you, this was a nightmare. I was absolutely engrossed by the look of my skin, wondering how on earth I could let this happen, did I not realise when walking out that the deadly rays from the space grill you like the gas stove in yakiniku joints? Desperately looking for a single spot in my face that would’ve spared the change, in vain. Until the morning, and still after waking, I’m 100% certain that skin melanoma will finally do me in. (I didn’t have as many moles earlier, did I?)
Still, I remember vaguely, that there has been a time that I’ve laid in sun, gritting my teeth against boredom, trying to get rid of this sickly pale and pink skin color – in vain, as it’s almost impossible for me to get tanned. So, something’s changed in the way I view my look. Weird. Especially since I’m living among people who in general are fairly darker than me…
On science: a study says that a third of all studies don’t hold up. What’s surprising here to me is – two thirds do hold? Gimme a break. 95 of everything is either completly wrong, irrelevant or misleading. (Via Cecilia’s (the PhD-Cecilia:) blog.)
On japanese customs: a family member of one japanese collague died. So, as the tradition goes, we offer our condolescenses in the form of incense money; each person is supposed to give an odd summ of money in an envelope; but since we did not have enough envelopes and straight bills, we just collected the odd sum from each and offered it as a single gift. As the tradition then goes, the grieving family will give the offerers a return gift (one per envelope). So, the lab now got a traditional return gift that consists of green tea and… a towel.
Not to say we’re baffled about who will get the towel, or shall we share it at the office, but in any case my mind trips over the idea of giving funeral guests towel. Does anyone know if the towel-thing really is a tradition? (I also got a towel from my japanese teacher as a birthday gift.) (Also, I was relieved about not attending the funeral as I heard that it included the nice past time of moving the deceased one’s bones using chopsticks to the urn)…
On weather: the awaited typhoon melted away into a tropical depression and caused not much havoc (using rubber sandals on my way to training was a good choice, anyway, so it did not bother me to wade in ankles-deep water) and gave way to the usual gorgeous post-typhoonish weather. The sky is brilliant blue for first time since don’t know when, fresh wind from the ocean clears the air and the sun is singularly SCORCHING.
I am seriously considering buying a parasol.
(The woman in the picture is called Yu, and she’s advertising sunscreen lotions. As far as I remember, the women advertising sunscreens in Finland are usually quite tanned…. so, maybe the japanese sunscreens inhibit tanning more strongly? 🙂
on Japanese samurai-soap-movies: rented randomly one with your usual men-with-swords on the front cover and ‘english subtitles’ indicated on the back. Turned out to be a very good movie, even though the obligatory sword-slashing parts were somewhat ungraceful and the dialogue partly just-so-moviejapanesque and unnatural. Good story, good actors, excellent music. Liked it almost as much as Zatoichi; this one was called Sazen, and, like Zatoichi, it’s a remake of an old and famous japanese movie from the 30’s. Watch it (but with glasses that let you live through the grandest clichees.)

One thought on “nightmares and notes

  1. I came across this gift-section in the biggest department store here in Kitami. There were lots of different kinds of beautifully packed, naturally pre-wrapped, boxes that you could choose from and then go to to counter, fill up a paper and the gift of your choosing will be sent anywhere you want. Half of those gifts seemed to be some kind of foods or drinks, and one third was towels.
    On sunscreens: In Finland, 30 is almost the highest number you can find on a sun-lotion bottle, but here it seemes to be somewhat the average. I have used a lotion that had a blocking factor (I don’t really know what it is called in English) of 50 and I have seen ones that had the number 100 written on them.

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