A Sweet Memory of My Summer Days

I don’t know why, but I really love the smell of mosquito coils. Therefore, during summer I have been burning the coils all days. Mosquito coils are already kind of out of fashions, and many Japanese people prefer electric mosquito killers.

When I smell mosquito coils, I always associate my grandparents and their house. In summer their house was smelled mixed burning mosquito coils and incense sticks. In my childhood the weather in summer hadn’t been hot and humid now a days.

When I was a kid, once I had gone to my grandmother’s hometown with my sister. My grandmother in my father’s side was from very country side in Shiga prefecture. Therefore, in the house the toilet was completely different from my house. There was just a big hole made from wood. It was the toilet. I was very scared to go to there because before I went my grandmother’s house, my mom scared me to tell that there was a monster in the toilet, and if I had bad behaviors, the monster would pull me into the hole. After I listened to the story, I couldn’t go to the toilet alone at night. That’s because in my childhood, the toilets were separated from the house in Japanese country houses. When we went to the toilet, we went out from the house and we had to go other buildings called toilets. Waking around in darkness was also very scary for me.

I think that I was very nervous to stay at my grandmother’s house. I met lots of new relatives there and had to introduce myself and exchanged greeting words with them. My mom told me that I should pretend a intelligent and polite kid in front of relatives. In the first night I really wanted to go to the toilet, but I couldn’t go there alone. I tried to wake my sister up to ask following me. However, she was worn out and didn’t seem to get up. Japanese old style hoses were very huge, and there were lots of rooms. If I asked my grandmother to take me the toilet, I had to work a long hallway to go my grandmother sleeping room. It was also scary for me. I regretted a lot to eat many watermelons, tomatoes and cucumbers with salt.

While I was crying, I dashed on the hallway to my grandmother’s room to wake her up. I asked her while I was in the toilet, keep looking at me. I remember my grandmother’s smiling face. She never complained and just took me there. And then, she kept looking at me while I was in the toilet with the opening door.

This summer I went some place where we can look at some very pretty Japanese old style houses with my American friends. Of course, I couldn’t smell mosquito coils and incense sticks. However, the houses also remained me my grandmother’s smiling face at that time.

These two pictures were taken by my American friend. Thanks a lot, Rob! If you were interested in his pictures, please go to his website! You can look at a bunch of his pictures. Here is the URL. http://gallery.robertloparo.com/

We went “Shirakawago(白川郷) in Gifu prefecture. At the place we can see many lovely Japanese old houses.


4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Heart
    Aug 27, 2010 @ 15:19:40

    Ha ha, I was laughing all the while I was reading your piece.. Will you believe if I told you that I can adapt your childhood story and not even change one word of it!!! Precious childhood days, mosquito coils, reminds me of my hometown in India! And thanks for the blog, I love to learn about Japanese culture, will read more posts soon..



    • yumi
      Oct 20, 2010 @ 22:32:59

      Hi, Rachana as Heart. Thanks for the comment. I appreciate you to leave two comments on my post. Thank you so much!
      I’m happy to read your comment because you enjoyed reading it. I hope when you read other posts, you also enjoy them.


  2. fashion games
    Aug 28, 2010 @ 03:33:57

    That great!


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