Sunday, September 11, 2011

Russell's Ken-Bun-Ki April 5, 1996

Editor's Note: "Russell's Ken-Bun-Ki" is a column being written by our Co-Ordinator for International Relations, Russell. He will comment on Japanese culture, customs, and languages from his point of view. Understanding the differences between cultures is the first step towards "International Relations." We hope to be interesting, fun, and at times please look forward to it.

Let's Protect the Earth!
When Spring rolls around the Japanese heart turns to Nature, right? The strong image I have is "Let's drink at Hanami (outdoor flower viewing drinking parties)." However, the other image I have is that after Hanami parties there are always beer cans and other garbage left on-site. Why is this? I always hear about "Japan is very short of natural resources," but I see people dash in to grocery stores without turning off their engines and people not turn lights off when they leave rooms. I just don't understand this. The responsibility to protect the Earth has nothing to do with national boundaries. However, I think Japan is behind other countries in their Environmental Protection activities.
Aya Town* is blessed with beautiful bountiful nature, and I hope that they maintain it as it is forever. However, "We've gotta keep it pure" can't be just something we say. Everyone, individually, must cooperate Recyling and re-using should be something that is done more fervently. Aya citizens who live in such a beautiful town such be the leaders in the (Miyazaki) prefectural Environmental activities. On Sunday, April 14 there will be an Earth Day Festival in Miyazaki City. It will start at 11 AM at the Miyazaki City Park. Please stop by and visit us there! (located next to the Science Engineering Hall).

*Aya (cho) Town is the name of the "machi' I lived in from 1987 to 2001. It is located in the Shoyojurin Teruha Mountains, which is registered with the Japanese Environmental Agency as one of the most beautiful and natural areas in Japan.

By 1996 I was one of the "leaders" of the Miyazaki (prefectural) international community. (Most other CIRs (CoOrdinators for International Relations) were only there for 3 years at the most; however, I was already on my 9th year.) I had been asked to be on the prefectural Earth Day committee, which planned the April event every year. When I was asked to begin writing these articles I started off with something I figured everyone would agree with: Keep the Earth Beautiful!
This was a good start. :-)
And by the way, my editor was my wife, Yuko. I'll let you know if there was ever any back-stage drama.

Let me know what you think of these, please.
My computer doesn't allow Japanese characters, but I can usually read them, so Japanese is OK nihongo no comment demo kekko desu yo!

Programming Note:
Starting next week, Russell's Ken-Bun-Ki will be moving to Fridays. The weekly bulletin where these columns originally appeared were published on Fridays, so I thought that would be more appropriate. I'll have something else on Mondays. :-)

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