A private record across the millennium  by Mie
December 1 (Wed), 1999; cloudy

I love flowers very much. I draw a lot of illustrations of flower in my homepage. One day last month, I got airmail from one of my Internet friends in the US. It was an envelope with a beautiful picture of the flowers on the surface and the seeds in it. I soon planted the seeds in the garden and gently watered them, wishing they will grow healthy in adapt with the emvironment of Oita.
December 2 (Thu), 1999; clear

A Fire Prevention Week has come around this year as usual. Today, we have a tiny fire engine in the backyard of the kindergarten next to my home. The firefighters, who usually fight against fire bravely, talked an easy story about the importance of fire prevention to the lovely kindergarten pupil. They also demonstrated the water spray in the yard.
After that, they took the pupil on the engine or make them wear the fire cloths. I felt that a performance like today is very usuful to grow the concern of the children on the fire prevention.
December 3 (Fri), 1999; clear

We have had a meeting of our mailing lists (ML) exchange party of Mailing List Exchange in "Eight hot springs in Beppu" in Hitparade Club starting 6:30 p.m. This is a year-end party of the mailing listmembers in Oita prefecture. The entertainer tonight was GenderWayann, born in Saeki city Oita prefecture, who is now under a spotlight. She performed a mysterious musics.
December 4 (Sat), 1999; clear and cloudy later

A friend of mine brought me a lot of Shiitake mushroom, a special product of Oita. The muchrooms are very thick. I am going to boil a part of it in a pod tonight. The residuals will be dried up in the sun for preservation.
December 5 (Sun), 1999; occasional light rain

We cleaned up whole community streets today all together. Although it was drizzling from the morning, many residents cooperated to clean the streets by uprooting weeds and picking garbage up. My husband went down to the precipice in front of home to clean the slope. Who in the world litters empty cans and plastic bags? I hope everybody should be more careful to keep the community clean. The streets are now ready to welcome a New Year to come soon.
December 6 (Mon), 1999; cloudy


We have had a strong cold wind all day long today. My tiny maple tree has turned its leaves to reddish brown color. On the wall are the shadows of the leaves swinging in the dull red light of the evening sun. A gingko tree in the kindergarten has already scattered around a half amount of its golden leaves, making a yellow carpet on the ground. Whole Japan archipelago will be wrapped with a colder air mass from Siberia in the evening, TV said.
December 7 (Tue), 1999; clear


I have already got a Christmas card today from an Internet family in the US we visited last year. Attached was a lovely girl's picture smiling on her one-year's birthday. A tiny present for me was also included! I was very delighted and hung it on my refrigerator front door. The present will make my kitchen more pleasant, thank you very much, indeed. I hope to see you all soon.
December 8 (Wed), 1999; clear

I will have a Friendship Sale (bazzar) tomorrow sponsored by Group of Friend Oita branch. So, I have baked a lot of cakes today, hoping many guests to come and buy them.
December 9 (Thu),1999; clear

We had a Friendship Sale at Rainbow building in front of Oita railroad station sponsored by Group of friends Oita Branch. We sold many handcrafts goods such as aprons, hand-embroidered dishtowels, handmade picture books for children, and cookies. many visitors came to buy them. We could contribute a part of the profits for mutual supporting campaign.

December 10 (Fri), 1999; clear

We will visit my mother's home in Tatsuno City of Hyougo prefecture to call on my father, 88, to inquire after his health. My son and his wife in Tokyo will also visit there.

The ferryboat is in a Christmas atmosphere as well. A lovely dolphin sits in the Christmas trees. My husband gave me a wonderful pocketbook as my birthday present, yes; I became 57 years today.
December 11 (Sat), 1999; clear


Before dawn, the ferryboat arrived at Rokko Island of Kobe City. After taking breakfast, we dropped in a sake brewery plant in Nada district to look around. I purchased a bottle of sake for my father. After driving two hours, we entered Tatsuno City, my birthplace. Beautiful landscape of Ibo River and Mt. Keiro welcomed us. My father has become a little bit weakened, but he was delighted to see us. We were relieved indeed.
December 12 (Sun), 1999; clear


My son and his wife arrived late last night from Tokyo. The three generations - parents, children, and grandchildren - cerebrated to see each other. As my father looked like in a good condition, we drove out to look around nearby. On the dinner, my son and daughter-in-law unexpectedly cerebrated the birthdays of my mother's and mine. I was really delighted.
December 13 (Mon), 1999; clear

Pleasant three days passed so quickly. My son's family and we will go home in the afternoon. I hope my aged parents will go well with as long as possible. My son and daughter-in-law presented us two tennis rackets. We will resume playing tennis soon.
December 14 (Tue), 1999; clear

Before dawn we arrived at Oita port. Today, I had an important meeting for Christmas. After taking breakfast, I attended the meeting. We discussed how we could offer our knowledge and power to the public society. All of the attendants joined a thanksgiving lunch.
December 15 (Wed), 1999; clear


We are in charge of block leader of our Fujimigaoka community until the end of next March. Today, we distributed municipal magazine and paper talisman of Kadomatsu (the New Year's decorative pine trees.) This year ends in 15 days.

Good news: A CATV Internet line came to my house, enabling continuous-high- speed- connection. The speed is marverous. Thank you Mr. Yuuki who connected the cable on the high ladder.
December 16 (Thu), 1999; clear

Today, I made Christmas cards. As I visited my mother's home during the days to write the cards, I feel somewhat impatient. I illustrated a picture using a PC and printed them to make the cards. Then I brought them to a nearby post office to send them by air to the Internet friends abroad or my husband's old business friends in the US, and Brasil.

December 17 (Fri), 1999; cloudy

I set up Christmas goods in my room. The goods have dear old memories: When I used to live in Chicago USA, I made some of them. The main item was the Christmas wreath. As my son visited us from Japan in his semester holidays, I also prepared an image of Santa Clause with paper and attached it on the window glass. The image still is carefully attached on the window in every Christmas season. Last year, a lovely tree was sent from my son and daughter-in-law to join the group. All of them will be our precious treasure of my home forever.

December 18 (Sat), 1999; cloudy

I made Christmas wreaths at my friend's home. We brought together various materials such as pine corn we picked up in the backyard or hillsides, nuts of trees, snake gourd rippen into crimson, deep-red pepper, and green leaves of holly. We planted them onto the ring base to make original Christmas wreaths.
December 19 (Sun), 1999; clear

I visited a church in downtown Oita together with my friend to go to Christmas mass. I could learn from the paster about the meaning of Christmas and the mission of Jesus. We had a lunch in the church. I have had a good time by singing many sacred songs cerebrating the birth of Jesus Christ.
December 20(Mon), 1999; cloudy


Because of our lazyness, we usually make New Year cards after Christmas days. This time, we worked hard to finish making the cards earlier than usual. This was because if we could drop the cards before December 20, the post office would put the date stamp of "2000.1.1."
I designed the content by illustrating a picture with a paint-software and PC mouse. I addressed the entire card using a Japanese-calligraphy software. In my home, we exchange message with E-mails, but we still have a lot of friends with whome we exchange New Year cards to hear about them and share the delight to be healthy each other. This is why we regularly prepare original New Year cards every year.
December 21(Tue), 1999; clear


  A great cold wave has hit Oita since a couple of days ago. This morning, a thermometer shows, wowo! quivering minus four degrees centigrade (27 F.) Top of Mt. Yufu is covered with a snowcap against the deep blue sky. The sun smils at us, but the air doesn't all day long. TV forcasts we will have much colser morning tomorrow. General Winter may test me.
December 22(Wed), 1999; clear

In the afternoon we visited a family who wanted to join the Internet anew. We bought a new computer, and one of our close friends set it up and connected to the net. The setting took longer than we had expected; we were forced to hurry to the studio in COARA , our Intednet provider. I was scheduled to appear on the radio program "Internet Life" from 8:00 p.m. As the traffic on the way was so heavy, I was just on time of the beginning of the program. I was very sorry to other staff of the program. The COARA office was beautifully decorated with Christmas ornaments.
December 23(Thu), 1999; clear

It got much colder this morning, but the weather was so beautiful. As we have long been worring about our shortage of exercise, we ventured to go out for a small park nearby with tennis rackets with us. When we met our son and his wife in my mother's home the other day, they presented us two beautiful rackets, saying we should excercise much more. Today, we removed off the wrapping paper of the rackets. We played tossing ball for about an hour to warm up ourselves. It was very refreshing, indeed. Thank you our young couple.
December 24(Fri), 1999; clear

It is on Christmas Eve tonight. I baked a coffeecake by following a new instruction. I think the result is so-so. The cake is decorated with holly leaves picked up from the tree in my garden and my favorite ornaments. In the evening, we opened a bottle of wine presented from my friend, and enjoyed the cake.
December 25(Sat), 1999; clear

The Christmas tree this year in my home is a camellia growing in the center of the garden. As the foliage grows round, it doesn't look like a Christmas tree, but we can see it from the living room. The tree is decorated with lamps, many coloreful balls, and glittering gold braids. By looking the tree, I sewed a smock I was asked to make from my son. I hope it will delivered to him within the year.

December 26(Sun), 1999; clear

  Today, a new family came to my home: Miss Chow Lillian, a lovely lady from Hong Kong, who has been learning in Tokyo for over a year. She came down to Oita this time to experience an ordinary Japanese life in a local city through a program sponsored by Society for Local Culture & International Exchange. She will stay in my home until January 5th. I hope she will make good use of her stay over the millennium.
December 27(Mon), 1999; clear


As the weather was so beautiful from early in the morning, we walked out aroung the community. After that, we drove out for shopping for the New Year cooking. In the after noon, we had a guest, Mr. David who came over to Oita this time as a homestayer like Miss Lillian. He stays in the Miyases and wanted to visit us by viewing my homepage. We enjoyed a pleasant time over the map of Spain. In the dinner, Lillian prepared boiled Gyoza she perfers in her homeland.
December 28(Tue), 1999; clear


Before we will be fully involved in the preparastion for a New Year, we drove out to Kujyu mountainside late in the morning. After driving through cloudy hills of Kujyu, we came down to Yufuin, our favorite resort, to enjoy hot spring bathing. The hotel is ready for welcoming a New Year by the decoration of Kadomatsu, literally "entrance pine tree." In the evening, Miss Lillian helped us in preparation of dishes to be used in a New Year to come.

December 29(wed), 1999; clear

I have started the preparation of New Year dishes. The first dish is "Tatsukuri", or literally "making rice field." The material is small sardines with heads. We carefully removed the guts from the fish before frying them on a pan for drying to give crispy touch on the toungue. The fish is then mixed with sweet caramel for serve. Here you are!

December 30 (Thu), 1999; clear


The year of 200 will come in two days. We also prepared for Y2K by storing kerosine and gas cylinder. Mr. and Mrs Kawano brought us special water from the mountain as usual.(left) We have had a pleasant day with Lillian by decorating New Year ornaments and joining a countdown party by COARA in the evening (right.)

December 31 (Fri), 1999; clear

The last day of 1999 has come at last. You can cry or laugh. I wish we can face a new milennium without any trouble of Y2K.

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