From “The Abundance of Less Lessons in Simple Living from Rural Japan by Andy Couturier

From “The Abundance of Less Lessons in Simple Living from Rural Japan" by Andy Couturier

Pages 264-265



“Sooo..” I begin to ask him, a bit apprehensive, not wanting to be insulting, “Gufu-san, why write all this stuff down?”


Unperturbed, he replies simply, “To make a record. If you don’t record things, you start to lose your sense of the place. It’s also interesting when you talk to other people, or when I want to look up something later. But it’s mostly just to make a record, even if I don’t use the information.”

“Yes, but how do you decide which things to write down?”

“Whatever is possible to write down, I write. How much the bus cost. How much the movie was, or how much the hotel was.”

“But why?” I ask.

“I didn’t have any purpose in doing it.”

No purpose? Perhaps I’ve been too attached to all my own actions being done for a reason. Utilitarianism is so deep in my culture I don’t even notice it. Listening to Gufu it occurs to me that it may not be so good to be always reaching ahead in time. Sitting here with my friend in a farmhouse in the mountains of Japan, I find my way of seeing the world start to deepen and change. All these little, unlooked-at details create the fabric of memory. By writing them down, we are refusing to let the experiences of our lives get subsumed in the tsunami of time, the onrush of the next, and the next, and the next. I think of so many travelers (myself included) zipping from one location to the next, taking photos of scenery or a building. Have I been missing the beautiful in the obvious?

Gufu is showing me--not that he’s trying to show me anything--that the whole world can come alive with these tiny details, ephemera, you might call them. But not just a generalized “world,” but a specific world, an India of a particular time, and, as it happens, an India that is disappearing every day.


Friday, March 27, 2020

Julie Ali @JulieYAli Replying to @sarbjitkaur1 Stay at home. Only go out for groceries or essential medical appointments. Basically live like a nun. 8:12 PM · Mar 27, 2020·Twitter Web App

So I went to the Royal Alexandra Hospital today. We had to be screened on the second floor for some reason. We had to take the elevator outside of outpatients to the main floor and then take an elevator down to the basement in a circular fashion.
Once the appointment was done we went home. I made a shepherd's pie for supper. I took some to dad and Sue.
I have to put the rest of the pie away for tomorrow but I am waiting for it to cool down.

The clothes are still in the washing machine. Another fraught day in paradise with the Coronavirus threat.
It feels as if people are now deciding to go out and about despite the threat.


In contrast I am staying home except for dad and Sue meetings, appointments.

I'm torn between hard core social distancing (grocery store only) and supporting the small businesses that are still open anyways - like dry cleaners? I gotta bag full of stuff but I don't feel its essential that I go there.....What to do people? #COVID19
31
26

Sherri Blyth @sherriblyth Replying to @nrXic @JulieYAli and 2 others Don’t forget he did it with the “little wife” by his side. One can only assume she was there if her own volition. 7:55 PM · Mar 27, 2020·Twitter for iPhone

Over the years I have made critical comments about government. I have also had elected officials and staffers contact me about those comments. I view that as fair game. I am in the public domain, and they have a right to defend themselves.
6
21
111
Certainly not defending minister shandro as I was not present to see the confrontation. But there is a distinction between critical comments which i suspect were respectful coming from you. These attacks on the Minister and his wife have been slanderous, dangerous and personal.
8
1
He knew Dr. Zaidi. All he needed to do was pick up the phone. Going to someone's house, telling their kids to go inside because it'll get ugly, and then yelling at the doctor is not the way to act even if you felt slandered.
2
2
4
It's pretty low class stuff to behave in this unseemly way. Almost as if they were both out of control. I can't imagine how traumatised the doctor and his family are right now. If this is how they treat their supporters you wonder why their supporters vote for them.