Author: Kangaeroo

Tumultuous Times

So much for reverting to daily updates after years of mostly recessed Kangaeroo.com.

It has been a week of topsy-turvy turmoil, though, so it’s a little understandable that a long-neglected blog once more fell by the wayside. Or was put aside at least.

Monday kicked off the week with a huge change: a house purchase! Once assumed to be unthinkable, it was actually doable. Kangaeroo was granted a loan that will probably not be completed while remaining on this mortal coil.

Tuesday saw the timely commission of a large job bringing in enough cash to cover the cost of moving house.

Wednesday was the final day of Kangaeroo’s time at the company that had been Kangaeroo’s employer since 2014. Kangaeroo had no idea. We had been told on March 1 that our section was being transferred to another company.

Little did we know that we were actually all being laid off and rehired on significantly reduced terms despite having been told that conditions would remain the same.

Payment amounts and working hours were the same, but benefits essentially vanished.

Wednesday was thus spent initially considering litigation and pondering over how to refuse signing the new contract that had been sent to Kangaeroo with the request that it immediately be signed and a photo of the signature sent in to the old company.

The late afternoon on Wednesday was spent enjoying good company and American junk food on a U.S. military base in suburban Tokyo.

Thursday was a day of resignation. To fate, rather than to employer. In this day and age, it’s lucky to be employed.

Kangaeroo signed the contract, sent it off and adopted an attitude of gratitude toward the new employer.

Making acceptance easier was the continued magnificence of Japan’s cherry blossoms, and the generally fine weather that has accompanied their bloom.

Friday has brought exhaustion.

On top of a regular 40-hour work week, huge amounts of time have been spent doing the outsourcing job, often starting before 3 a.m.

And cycling has not been neglected, logging up almost 450 kms over the week.

But mental and physical drain are the most prevalent feelings at the moment.

The cherry blossom season in Tokyo is nearing its end.

Possibly, there may be one last look tonight at the lit up flowers near home.

We might have to wait and see on that one.

But, if it does happen, it will more than likely take place with the involvement of Sally, the Death Machine.

Spring-Heeled

Spring is such a delight in Japan. One reason for that is the blooming of cherry blossoms.

For a week or so, much of the company is given a glorious pink carpet as the national flower blooms, transforming often bleak landscapes into spectacular vistas.

Kangaeroo spent the weekend cycling Tokyo’s central districts and suburbs, taking as many photos of the blossoms as possible.

Spring in the Step

This has been a strange kind of week.

Meetings kicked off the week, continued throughout and were punctuated by work and lots of cycling and photography.

Oh, yeah. And looking after the pet dinosaur.

Amid that, feelings went up and down. Mostly down.

Now, as the working week draws to a close, it feels like things are getting better.

The next couple of weeks are going to be demanding. The next few months even more so, actually.

But for today, things are comparatively calm. And that contentment has put a spring in the step, appropriate considering the season.

Bloomin’ Wonderful Time

Cherry blossoms are on the verge of reaching full bloom in the western Tokyo area.

The flowers are not quite at their peak, but they are still exquisitely beautiful.

Cycling this morning was a delight.

What To Do?

When Kangaeroo started back in 2010, the aim was probably to help students understand that American was not the only form of English and that Australians speak Strine.

What the aim intended to accomplish remains unknown.

At some point, the blog became an area to examine lesser-known aspects of the Japan-Australia relationship.

For the first five years of its existence, Kangaeroo.com was updated almost daily.

It’s initial aim was not accomplished because I couldn’t get enough people to read it.

Same goes for its subsequent purpose, I guess.

That probably goes some way to explaining why updates have been sporadic at best over the past several years. But I am paying a lot of money to keep this blog in existence and I have no idea why.

When I ride my bike in the mornings, I have weird and wonderful ideas about how to use the blog, but most don’t come to fruition as reality prevails.

So, I still don’t know what to do. I guess I would like to pursue the unknown side of Japan-Australian relations more. I used to have a huge cache of information and tidbits, but it is mostly gone now. My memory, too.

Reflective

More and more is going on to inspire reflection on life.

It’s a constructive development. Life is good when life exists. Realizing it’s good is another matter. Fortunately, for various reasons, it’s becoming easier to find elements of all things to contain the pleasant.

It’s not my nature to do this, yet I am finding myself doing it more often.

What luck!

Spinning Out Near the Sacred

Mount Fuji is glorious!
For better or worse, like much of the rest of the world, Kangaeroo has been confined to home for the past year due to the covid pandemic.
It has not been all woe, though. One benefit is an almost daily opportunity to cycle along the Tama River.
There’s a cycling road about 50 kilometers long running for most of the way on both banks of the river, which once served as the Japanese capital’s main water supply.
Mount Fuji is notoriously shy and only shows its face with great clarity for a few months each year, unfortunately those times being the colder months. But the majestic mountain overlooks the Tama, creating a spectacular backdrop when it can be viewed. It’s not hard to see why Mount Fuji has been regarded as sacred in Japan for centuries. It is still a breathtaking sight with every view.