friends

taft tigers

2017-11-01 LINCOLN CITY, OREGON, USA -- Gabe, son of our friend Lori, is a senior at Taft High School, and captain of the soccer (association football) team.

Gabe is number 24, in the white shirt towards the right of the picture.
171101_TB010645

I got great seats next to the Taft HS Band. I learned a lot from observing their playing.
171101_TB010655

We congratulated Lori and her mother-in-law after the match. The Taft Tigers won 6-0. Actually I predicted that after the 1st goal but nobody was taking bets!
171101_TB010661

ieper

2017-09-25 IEPER, BELGIË -- Ieper (Yepres in English) was the battleground for trench warfare during World War I, or (WOI wereld oorlog een) to people in Flanders.

Ieper gave the name to Yperite gas, because this was where
mustard gas was first used.
170925_P1620388

The battle raged almost exactly 100 years ago. Cavalry still rode horses. Bugles were serious means of communication.
170925_P1620405

Special trucks transported several dozen carrier pigeons at a time.
170925_P1620716

The signal corps adopted wired telegraph and, in some cases, wired telephone.
170925_P1620441

Our friend Mia encouraged us to visit the
Passchendaele Museum. She was right -- Passchendaele is better than the more famous In Flanders Fields Museum. The latter is easily accessible from the Ieper train station, and has a wonderful exhibit that is worth a serious visit. The Passchendaele museum offers more direct and comprehensive appreciation of the trenches, particularly how they evolved over time.
170925_P1620497

Passchendaele let us tour a real tunnel that was recently discovered beneath a church. This is a temporary exhibit that is open until Armistice Day of this year (2017-11-11). The corridors are filled with water that need to be constantly pumped out. During trench warfare, soldiers manned the pumps. I would not last 5 days in these conditions.
170925_P1620333

We walked to the
Tyne Cot memorial to pay our respects. Many headstones mark unknown soldiers who are, as Rudyard Kipling wrote, Known Unto God.
170925_P1620633

We attended
the Last Post ceremony at 20:00 at Menin Gate. Tonight's ceremony was conducted by the Australian military. Our friend Mia is a loyal supporter of the Last Post Association.
170925_P1620887

the chocolate frog

2017-03-08 LINCOLN CITY, OREGON, USA -- After my trumpet lessons with John Bringetto in Seal Rock, we like to drive a bit further south to Waldport, where our friends have their Chocolate Frog candy store.

Noriko and l love the store-owners Ken and Leslie. We visit and buy every chance we get.
K5A_8453

They make chocolate frogs! The yellow one is a new flavor -- hot pepper!
K5A_7129_trimmed

Frog poop! Puffed wheat, I think, covered in colored candy.
K5A_7163_trimmed

Frog poop goes great with ice cream sundaes!
P3318317_trimmed

The Chocolate Frog supports local talent by selling artifacts made by local artists. We installed a cute faceplate for our light switch in our family room.
K5A_7106_trimmed

zach moves to oregon

2017-03-06 DAMASCUS, OREGON, USA -- We visited our friend Zach at his lovely new home located southeast of downtown Portland, Oregon.

When the skies are clear, Mt Hood looms in the east. What a gorgeous view that must be!
K5A_7027

Noriko selected mice-themed sake cups. Zach keeps rats as pets.
K5A_7031

Friends! Last time we met face-to-face was 10 (gasp!) years ago in Sapporo. Electronic correspondence is nice, but can never beat a hug.
K5A_7041