Vacation continues. Today, my friend, mentor and ex-co-worker, Evelyn and her friend (mine, too) Pam came over for dinner. Evelyn and Pam came to Japan as missionaries from England many years ago: Evelyn worked at the junior and senior high schools, while Pam worked at the college, sharing a home which was a part of the high school campus. Evelyn hired me 20 years ago.
Aging is a weird phenomenon. I was talking to my friend, David, about how I still hold a mental image of myself when I was in my twenties. I don't see myself as the overweight, graying, 51-soon-to-be-52 Craig, but rather the thin young dude with hair to his shoulders. David, 58, agreed. This is probably why we hurt ourselves trying to do things we used to be able to do so easily (like walking up the front steps in winter without slipping and breaking bones, as my friend from high school, Susan, just had the misfortune of doing).
It's hard to believe I've known Evelyn, who retired to York three years ago, and Pam for 20 years. It's hard to believe I've known my oldest friend, John (who just got married to Suzie yesterday!) since we were in junior high, almost 40 years now. My son Tatsu will graduate from high school in June, move on to university, and it just doesn't seem possible (probably the wine I've been drinking magnifies all of this).
I just finished printing out all our new years letters which we send to family and friends outside of Japan (Japanese family and friends get traditional new years cards). The kids have already gone to their grandparents' house, and Kaoru and I will join them tomorrow. I'll be (mercifully) off line for the next few days. So Happy New Years everybody. The good news is that each passing year doesn't diminish the memories, but rather helps to create more.