I came home from work and looked in my letter box and found a delivery notice: Can be picked up at Hanin Drugstore after 1 pm tomorrow.
So I went down there this afternoon in the blistering sun of the hottest day of the year to find out just *why* the letter carrier hadn't been able to get my cent démons, a single modest wide-han tank, into my roomy new letterbox, huh? Huh? Huh?
And was handed an enormous parcel 18" by 14" by 6. incandescens, you rather forgot to mention the eighteen volumes of Hikaru no Go that came along as well, but I'm delighted to have them. I shall marathon them on the long weekend with my foot up and the usual desperate desire for a French word tank.
I desire it already with Cent démons, some of the more colloquial stuff; though in this case I can compare the Japanese in the bunkoubon. I'm glad too to have this vol 1 in its proper size even if, as always, the art quality has suffered a certain degradation in the process of being printed for a western language. And I'm perplexed by a few of the constructions. 'Emmène Ritsu dans sa chambre, veux-tu?' Err- veux-tu? As in the sense of 'will you?' Can you really say that? Because it sounds like Astérix chez les Bretons to me: 'Puis-je avoir une nuage de lait?' 'Sûr vous pouvez.'
Otherwise the intense heat everyone else has had a taste of has arrived here. To my shock I seem able to survive it with minimal AC use. Time was I used to run the system all night and still wake sweaty. But yesterday I turned it on for an hour to cool the house a bit, then ran my window AC for another hour to get the bedroom truly chilly (and it *was* chilly: bravo for functioning window units) and slept comfortably after with just the fan. And because the windows were closed and the window fan not in use the room stayed dark and I slept for once until 9 am, a happy change from those 5:30 wakenings when it gets light.
Maybe I'll regret this as well, but tonight I have the window fans operating in most of the house. It's warm, yes, but it's pretty dry by TO standards and that registers as cool to me. In fact it started getting feeling-cool around 8 when the sun was out of the way, another surprise. Dryness and a wind blowing makes for comfortable evenings, best spent out on Bloor St with friends. It's the heavy unmoving wall-of-mug nights that lead to thoughts of suicide and the need to keep the AC running.
As it is, except for finding myself under the deadly sun at Spadina and Bloor in mid-day, which makes me dizzy even when the temperature is below 90F, the heat so far has been nostalgic more than anything. Like my childhood though more humid. Like Tokyo though not nearly as humid. (1994 with a record number of tropical nights, when the temp didn't go below 30C/ 86F. That was hot. I closed down psychologically for the duration.)
The cicadas sing and I do Tokyo things to beat the heat, like drinking mugi-cha (barley tea.) Cut with a little iced tea for sweetness because- Americans beware- up here iced tea is always presweetened. I gorge on mango sashimi: chilled mango sliced thin with a sharp knife. If the mango is too mushy for sashimi I have mango sandwiches: mango pulp spread on caraway rye bread with sliced strawberries. Who needs jam? Or chicken with mango spread instead of mayonnaise. I could live on mangoes in summers like this.
And it's all going to end tomorrow or next day so I can for once agree with my mad Iraqi neighbour that 40 or 50 is a pleasant temperature. It is, if you have nothing to do and can just sit around happily drugged by the heat and let thoughts flow through you secure in the knowledge that it won't last past a few days. I find that Ritsu's grandfather speaking French has given me the vague desire to write Ritsu's grandfather speaking English in some vaguely onmyouji-like story where the ghoulies are truly ghoulies and not just Seimei's 'magic' called up by someone's chance words or overwhelming feelings.
The ghoulies as I may have said before are a problem: Japanese bogles are vulgar and ridiculous. Their ghosts aren't really scary by me, but they can be made to be scary when you only see part of the story. Something odd, something out of place, but whatever backstory there may be doesn't come out until much later.