Tuesday, August 1, 2006

Song of the cicada

Posted by kuri, ping, the pinglet, & mini-ping on 8/01/2006
Taking a sip from my ice-cold margarita with my eyes half-closed, I let my hand trail in the cool, cool water...

"KOKURA, KOKURA desu. Gojyosya arigato gozaimashita..."

Zap! Ah, yes, the annoying train lady's voice brings me back to reality and I look out the windows at the concrete jungle of KitaQ. I swear I can feel the heat. It's like having an unwelcome guest at your house that you can't get rid of, no matter how hard you try.

KitaQ is no longer the relocated Amazon with its unrelenting rain and humidity. Now it's just humid and the battle of the mold has begun. But first, I have to introduce you to a mainstay of the Japanese summer...the cicada, or semi in Japanese (don't click on the link if you are faint of heart. *shudder*).

I always know that the summer has arrived when I can't hear the television for all the racket they make outside my window. Screeching like fingernails running down a blackboard, they look like large FLYING cockroaches. I know people who love semi but I am not one of them (hold on a minute...*blech* *shake* *shudder*...OK, back now).

I had never seen a semi until I came to Japan (yes, I've lived a sheltered life) so the shock I felt when I came face to face with my first (suicidal) semi was not something that I've ever been able to forget in my 12+ years here. Perhaps the semi was trying to be friendly and welcome me to the neighborhood as it flew at my head. I didn't get a chance to ask since I wacked it to the ground with a swing that the Yomiuri Giants only wished they had to break their losing streak.

Ahhh, the sounds of summer. How many more months until the snows begin?

11 of you feeling verklempt. Tawlk amongst yourselves:

liina said...

I didn't click... I can only imagine... am am shivering already :|

Anonymous said...

hi,E7 ni kikeba wakaru to omoukedo.
Semi no inochi wa totemo mijikakute kawaisou na ikimono nan dayo.Tsuchi no nakade 7nen , Chijyou ni detekite wazuka 7ka. Dakara Nihonjin wa Semi ga kawaisou to omotsute urusaku temo yurushiterun dayo..


kuri & ping said...

Fan, yeah, I know all about their short life spans but it doesn't make me any more disposed to think kindly of them. Well, as long as they stay up in the trees and don't attack my face. :)

Helen said...

I'd never seen one before I came here either. Nasty lookin' things....and I didn't have the nerve to click either !

Belinda said...

We huge amounts of them here in Summer too, Chris. I actually don't mind them. They kinda sound peaceful as we sit outside having dinner in the warm evenings.

They don't creep me out at all! :)

I don't think they are that loud as to drown out the TV though!

If it's any consolation, I know we don't get extreme winters here, but I'm looking forward to Spring. I'm ready for a change (as are you, I expect!).

dongurigal said...

Oh I miss them semis. I kind of liked their racket, for some bizarre reason.

L. said...

Howdy -- I`m catching up after 3 weeks away, in your part of the world!
The semis weren`t out in force yet in Tokyo yet when we left, which is too bad. I would have enjoyed hearing them and saying, "Ah, natsukashi!" -- and then hearing my friends say, "What are you, fucking nuts?"

Cari said...

Were you already gone from here the summer they went berserk? 96 I think--yeah because it was the year ahead of me's senior prank to leave dead cicadas in the vending machine drawers. So *not* fun.

Weather here isn't much better at the moment--I think I brought Japan with me. Also ♥ you for introducing me to Bloglines, such a good tool :D

Anonymous said...

I hate those little buggers. The noise is unbearable. BTW I did click the link and thought what a bunch of weirdos must be in that cicada mania club, running around looking for nymphs and whatnot to photograph. OTAKU!


kuri & ping said...

I've started not to mind them too much (which usually happens every year about 3 weeks into hearing them every day), but it's still a no-go with looking at them or having them fly past my head.

Other buggy stories: There was a spider on the stairs of my apartment building that was as big as my hand(!) I freaked and ran as fast as I could. E7 didn't know what the hell was wrong with me.

risingsunofnihon said...

I can believe a semi tried to attack your head, and good for you for defending yourself! I didn't click the link because I wanted to let bad memories stay hidden away. Roll on winter and no more suicidal wildlife!


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