Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Everyone Knows

It's Windy!


After cold and sometimes rainy days, last weekend brought beautiful weather: calm winds, clear skies and a high of 25°C (77 F).   Perfect for viewing the ume (Japanese plum) blossoms on the thousands of trees in Mito City's Kairakuen (Japan's first public gardens, built by the 9th Lord of Mito, Nariaki Tokugawa, in 1841).   Everyone else in the region evidently thought so too, as it was the most crowded that we'd ever seen it. 

Two Ume Taishi (Plum Ambassadors) - Risa-san on the left and Mari-san on the right - entertain Lord Pandabonium  at the Ume Matsuri (plum festival) last Sunday.   There are ten women selected each year to be Ume Taishi who promote the plum festival.  After I thanked them in Japanese, Mari-san surprised me by saying, in excellent English, "Thank you very much, have a nice day".
That night, the temperature plunged to a low of 2°C (36 F) and the following days it was back to winter temperatures.  It's warming up again, and today (Wednesday) was around 20°C (68 F) but WINDY.   "How windy was it?", you might ask.  How about 56 kph?  That's about 30 knots or 35 mph.  As the fields in our neighborhood have been recently harvested and ploughed, we have clouds of dirt blasting us relentlessly.   Looks like it will last (blast?) through tomorrow.

So, while things are warming up, we'll still have to wait until we get the right mix of temperature, wind and absence of rain before venturing back on the lake.  Hopefully it will be soon.

And speaking of "windy", I am reminded of the great song by The Association in 1967.   Here is Astrud Gilberto's rendition (1968), which has a wonderful trombone part.  I don't know who played it, but I do know that Astrud had some greats working with her back in those days, such as Urbie Green and Bob Brookmeyer.  Enjoy...

Until next, sweet sailing.

You can read all about this year's  Ume Matsuri  on my Pacific Islander blog.  

1 comment:

Doc Häagen-Dazs said...

59 knots is enough to make the spray flying in your face feel like sand. I know that much. Happy sailing when the air calms down!