Today I was given a cassette player for my room, so that I would be able to practice my dance routine. I had said earlier that I didn’t mind practicing in one of the family’s downstairs living areas, but this was meant with guffaws and something which sounded awfully like, ‘Yes, but we might well mind!’ And so it was that I consigned myself to some private preparation, whereupon I swiftly realized that whilst I could recall most of the required postures and positioning, I had absolutely no idea how it was supposed to sync to the accompanying song. However, I tried not to let this minor quibble get in my way, and continued plugging away at my routine, alone and very much ashamed. This is almost certainly how Natalie Portman felt during the making of ‘Black Swan’.
One of the things that is most noticeable out here in the country is how unaffected by light pollution we are. The lack of any suburban areas and low moisture content in the atmosphere combine for some quite spectacular sunsets and sunrises, where the liquid skies become awash with a beautiful assortment of hues and colours. For me the only shame is that dusk doesn’t last for longer than it does, as like the rest of Japan it is gone almost before one has the chance to marvel at its magic.