Just screwing around in Lightroom, actually figuring out how to use some of its best functionality, like the adjustment brush. Obviously very heavy-handed here, but I think the effect matches the guy’s expression.
It’s impossible to imagine Zoe playing with a doll. A few nights ago she went to bed clutching a train book, and she often watches raptly out our window, and when a train goes by, she’ll scream “TRAIN!” and gesticulate wildly, ’cause she just has to share the excitement.
In fact, out of the dozen or so recognizeable words that she can utter, a full quarter of those are taken up by train-specific words. There’s the onomatopoeia kan kan, which is the sound of a railroad crossing, there’s the general word for train, and, this kills me, somewhere she picked up the word for “steam locomotive.” Yes, out of the 12 words that her little brain figured it most important to master first, one of those is devoted specifically to steam locomotives, as separate and distinct entites from regular electric trains.
Of course, the first word that she mastered was “bye bye.” It was the same with Genbo. The word accompanied by the wave. I see it as a poignant reminder that our relationship will be full of goodbyes. First I’ll say goodbye to the baby, as she grows into a little girl. This is already happening. Then I’ll say goodbye to the sweet girl as she becomes a woman, and she’ll leave home (I’m not Japanese, so I intend to kick my kids as far out of the nest as possible). And then, finally, another permanent goodbye at the end. My end, godwilling, but either way.
(And this was just supposed to be a post about trains.)
This is Genbo’s first Halloween in America, and he had a very good time. He enjoyed it with his step-sister Linnea, who showed him the ropes.
He was Curious George, which strikes me as fitting because he A) loves Curious George, B) was born in the year of the monkey, and C) has always seemed to me to be very monkey-like (in a good way) in his love of and playful manner of cavorting around.
Conquering yet another porch with Linnea
I love his nervous expression here (“Um, dad, you’re suuuure this stuff is all for play, right?”)
No nervous expression here
“Hey Genbo, no eating while still on the porch! It’s declasse.”
Today was a day off because of the fall equinox. Genbo explained to me on the way home from daycare the other day that night and day were the same, which is why he had vacation. His teacher and a good oni (demon) had explained it to him. I have no idea what kind of teaching aids they use at his daycare, but it being run by a Shinto shrine and all, it seems I have little grounds for complaint.
So, we decided to make a trip to Kobe for the day. It’s a fun, very cosmopolitan town, with a bunch of European-esque cafes, an old Chinatown, and a monorail that Genbo was dying to ride.
All these photos were taken with a Sigma 30/1.4 on loan from Jeffrey, who went to great lenghts to secure a good copy. And, judging from the quality of these pics at very wide aperture, he certainly did a good job. (You sure you don’t want to reconsider that trade, Jeffrey?)
Genbo looking out the train window. I’m going to have to join a support group for dads whose sons are much better looking than they are.
Bored with the scenery, Genbo decided to kill time by giving Zoe rasberries. Now where could he have learned such aberrant behavior?
At last, blessed peace…
On our way to a great cafe we went to last time, I spy a classy shoe store catering to the ideal of understated elegance that young Japanese ladies are known for.
Psychedelia to wear
The cafe was as excellent as we remembered. The pastries and coffee were all first class. I definitely recommend it to anyone visiting Kobe. Of course I have no recollection of what it’s called….
Zoe has had worse experiences than eating honey crepes and cherry tarts…
I still remember the time my uncle Tommy taught my brother and me the trick of plugging the top of the straw with your finger, bringing it to your mouth, and then letting go to drink one strawful at a time. I took this opportunity to teach Genbo, and he only spilled a few strawfuls of grapejuice on his shirt before getting the hang of it.
Sizing up the task ahead
Street performer playing amplified harmonica
Zoe likes Kobe…
… a lot!