February 4: The first day of spring comes with a concert
by Mie
My sleepy eyes were suddenly opened wide when I found a snowfall thicker than yesterday. The cover is covered with pure-white snow. The weather forecast says we will have a nation-wide heavy snowfall, but it is a surprise to have such thick snow precipitation. Spring starts, the calendar teaches us, from today, but actually it is the coldest season of the year. At the corner of my garden, a small Senryou (Chloranthus glaber) holds tiny red berries making a wonderful contrast with white snow on the ground.

Mt. Yufu (left), Mt. Tsurumi (right), and Mt. Takasaki (not in sight, far left of the picture) are shining white under the winter sky.
I looked down our Fujimigaoka community from a nearby hillside. All the roofs are covered with snow, making me feel as if I were living in a strange town.

Mt. Yufu, left, is shining white. The mountain is sometimes called Bungo-Fuji, meaning "a Fujiyama in Oita." Our community is named after it.
It is now a morning rush hour. As the road is partially frozen, all vehicles are forced to creep by inching, making a long line down to a traffic signal at the exit of the community. I suppose it is hard to commute in a winter morning. I hope they drive safely.

Bright laughter comes from a kindergarten on my backyard. Kids are playing on the thin snow, by pressing their face on it to make the dents of their nose or mouth. They shout "This is my nose, that is your mouth!" Soon, kids enjoyed snow-throwing with the teachers. Kids are really vivid in the cold wind.

A concert was held at "Oita Prefectural Grand Theatre" in OASIS 21 in the evening.

As I got two tickets of the concert from my friend, we visited there to enjoy "Culture-Forest Concert sponsored by Kyushu Power Co.,". I was delighted because this was the first time to enter the theatre. We took seats at the mezzanine.

Kyushu Orchestra performed three works of Mendelssohn. The conductor was Mr. Koutaro Satoh, and violin soloist was Ms. Tomoko Kato. She thanks to the big applause after her play of famous Violin Concert. After this, Symphony No. 3 "Scotland" was played. Wonderful musics have made me feel the faint sign of spring arrival this evening.
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