Monday, September 18, 2006


is Day for the Aged.
This is celebrated every third Sunday of September.
The Japanese used to celebrate it on the 15th of September
since I can remember. But the Law was repealed several years ago.
OLD folks are seen everywhere:
the parks, walking, playing gateball,
exercising, planting vegetables on a small patch of land.
They seem to be everywhere
and right here, they seem to dominate society.
The number of old folks in this country increase every year,
while childbirth remains the same, or lesser.
Hence Japan faces the problem of graying society。
The problem of caring for the old folks 
remains the main problem of government.
Around 99% of them recieve regular pension pay
6 times a year.
Helping an old man by offering him your seat
in public transport like trains and buses
are often met with disgusto.
Once I offered mine to an old man
as I saw him struggling on the rails while the train was in motion.
He refused nicely,
and struck a conversation with me.
He happened to be a University Professor somewhere in Kyoto.
A friend told me that most Japanese so not look well
at being helped. It would signal that it is the end of their
usefulness, if that happens.
While most Lolas and Lolos here have looked grateful at assistance
offered to them, I have since resisted the impulse to help them
wherever, whenever I see them.
Living with an old
GANKO [obstinate] OJIISAN [Grandpa]
has taught me to respect his space
and not trod on his moods
lest I want a word war to happen
right in our own living room!
Last week, I gave Jiji [Lolo]
a wallet made of deerskin.
He had been making 'parinig' about how tattered his wallet was
and that how he wish he had a new one.
I offered to buy him a new one
just to shut him up.
Oh well!
Happy Lolo's Day!


Alitaptap said...

Hi Cory,

Does your lolo read Dylan Thomas? Here's a passage from one of his poems:
"Do not go gentle into that good night
Rage, rage, at the dying of the light"

Anyway, here's something your lolo will appreciate:

Alitaptap said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
cory* said...

My Lolo knows a little English.
I'm afraid I can't recommend DT's poems....but thanks, anyway.
I appreciate it.

I tried sending u one, but it doesn't work...
I wonder why...
Oh well!

cory* said...

just did!