July 1st: Home keeping class in Fukuoka
by Mie
July has started from today. I went to Hakata, the capitol of Fukuoka prefecture, by train nicknamed "Sonic" departing from Oita station. This is because some of the members of Oita Group of Friends are to be involved in the meeting held in Hakata sponsored by Kyushu Area headquarters. What was surprising, Hakata railroad station was in the deep flood of a record-high torrential rain that had been continued from last night. Today, a slight sunshine gives an interval of the rainy-season-end big rain.
We are still in the rainy season, but those people who feel difficult to wait the summer festival called Hakata Gion have already prepared big float like this. The float took a hint from a TV program based on a famed historical accident in Edo era, called "Matsu-no-rouka", literally meaning "a corridor of pine." Four members will take part in the meeting.
  
There are twenty branches of Group of Friends on Kyushu island, sending 112 members in total to the meeting. The meeting started from singing the Hymn No.385, followed by the reading of a phrase from the book by Motoko Hani (the founder of the Group.) Ms. Hara, a member of the central committee, presided the meeting in which many local reports were presented using tables, diagrams and anatomies. The major theme of the report was "Time Analisis" of each branch who carried out intensive researches on the time keeping conditions in individual homes.
Curried rice prepared by Fukuoka Group of Friends was served as the lunch.
  
In the afternoon, the study continues: a member from Miyazaki prefecture reports (left) on her experience of raising babies and little children by keeping time. Another member reveals the actual result of heating and lighting expenses in Kagoshima branch. WE, Oita branch presented the result of pajama making class in children's group.
   
Remote Okinawa branch sent some members to Fukuoka, 500 miles away from home, who introduced unusual colorful local foods (left) and large tofu dish (left in the right picture) that weigh as much as 1.5 kilograms each. The raw tofu (left) turns into the square product of tofu on the left. The product tofu is used in famous Okinawan dish called "Chanblue."
   
Our Group of Friend has been taking contact with Bangladesh for more than 14 years on the kitchen basis. This year, some members will visit Bangladesh from Japan. The delegation members are busy in preparing for the visit by reading past exchange records and general information on the country. Today, some branches have brought-in some candidates of the souvenir. Oita branch displayed cheese cracker we had learned in the other day's study class.

Until 4 p.m., we exchanged information each other. After returning to Oita, we will introduce our Oita members what we have seen in Fukuoka meeting today.

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