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[Serial no.7] As One Every Day June 2022

Community Saijiki literary calendar

Nichinichi Kore...(Our daily lives are …)

坂井和貴(Kazuki Sakai)

Nobu-chan, one of my old friends living in Tokyo, came to visit us. It was just the day before yesterday.
She stopped by on her way back from a trip to Kyoto, so we only talked for about two hours at the community café space.

She wanted to see Mr. Iwata's Japanese paintings hanging at the entrance.

She asked Mr. Iwata many questions one after another, such as
"Hey Takashi, how did you draw these lines?"
"Oh, it's so wonderful to be able to ask the artist directly!"
She was delighted to be able to ask Iwata face-to-face.

Nobuchan, who has made it her life's work to paint pictures herself, said,
"Now, Takashi, you paint every day, don't you? What motivates you to do it?

He replied, "Before, I used to think that I would paint something like this or win an award, but those were extraordinary motivations. Now, painting has become my "everyday" life. I wonder if I am painting the "everyday. If that's the case,"
" I wonder what kind of paintings you are doing." Nobuchan murmured.

The two of them never stopped talking about painting. I was watching them with a smile on my face.

Painter "Takashi Iwata" who lives and paints in the community

Nobuchan, Mr. Iwata, and I were friends in our school days, when we were active in the "Tokyo Young People's Association," which, in retrospect, is a very lame name for a group of people. When we started talking, we immediately warped back to those days.
It was a period of less than two years, but it was the kind of day that would create a relationship that would last a lifetime.

"Iwata-san and I are now part of the same [family] in the community."
I began to explain to Nobuchan, who knew little about this place.
"The Suzuka community is like a big family, but there are about five [families] within it, and each [family] has its own meetings, meals, and other activities to see and get to know each other. Our[ family] even held a solo exhibition of Mr. Iwata's paintings, and we are planning to do it again this autumn..." and so on.
And as we talk, I find myself looking back and wondering what kind of "daily life" we are leading.

The "sa" in "Satsuki"(May in Japanese) means rice dedicated to the god of rice fields or early seedlings planted in May. This is the time of year when the rice paddies are in full swing, and with the planting of course comes the chorus of frogs.
From the window of the community dining room, we can see a small rice field about two-tenths hectare across the road.
At dinner time, the orchestral sound is so loud that one would think that all the frogs in the Suzuka area have gathered in those rice paddies.
Every Thursday evening, it is our [ family's] turn to create a place where the community members who come to the dining room can relax and enjoy dinner. Men and women of all ages come by, and we can see the faces of the recently enrolled Academy students and those who have come from around the country to experience and practice the program. It's not like being on duty or in charge, but the feeling of harmony in a family.

After sending off everyone who is satisfied and cleaning up, the tea time with [family] members is also very special. We chat, listen to each other's petty stories, and lose track of time.
We asked, "Where did frogs live before we planted the rice?"
"Well, maybe they were hibernating in the rice paddies."
"But if they did, they would have died on the rotary of the cultivator before rice planting."
"That's true. Then, did they come from somewhere watching the rice planting?"
"But I've never seen a parade of frogs coming to the rice paddies!"
I googled it for the time being.
"Well, it says they are in the grass, mountains, and forests."
"We are in a residential area with a few rice paddies, so there are no mountains or forests nearby, and I don't see any grassy areas."
The conversation was about trivial matters, but Nana, Lucio, Reiko, and Toshimi all felt a sense of curiosity like they did when they were children.

Later that day, I was passing by that rice field. I saw three-year-old Akari playing in Tachibana Park diagonally across the street, so I called out to her.
She pointed and said, "Look, there's a frog in the hump of this tree!"
"There are more frogs in the grass here."
"Oh~, really? Where are they?"
I was so surprised to notice that even in a town like this, there are many places to find frogs, and I couldn't wait to tell my family members about it the following Thursday.
Iwata-san suddenly said, "I have discovered how to stop the chorus of frogs." Our family's frog research continues.

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We're gonna paint the roof of the SCS!
Let's do it together!
The roof is rusting.
We will do it on May 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5.
SCS is our building and we'd like to keep it for a long time to come.
I want to take this opportunity to paint it together .
The work is very easy and we want to do it with our own people and not outsource it.

I want to finish it all at once before it gets too hot, when it's cooler and drier.
We have something for everyone, young and old, men and women, so we can get in an hour when we have some free time.
I'm going to make it so you can go up the stairs.
Just look at it 👀!
It'll be fun! I'm sure it will be.

Responding to a LINE message from Koichi, a community member, the Academy students and our children climbed up the stairs to the roof set up by the scaffolders one after another. From rust removal to rust prevention, and finally, each [family] climbed up on the roof to get covered in paint.
During the "Golden Week", a week consecutive national holidays, we were blessed with fine weather and painted the roof, which is more than 500 tatami mats in size, in one color of silver paint. Exactly the Silver Week?

As Mr. Yagi often says.
"We live in a very big house. We have rooms all over the place, and we walk down a long driveway to SCS (Suzuka Culture Station), where everyone's dining and living rooms are located. It's a huge mansion~."


"We rethatch the big roof of our own house by ourselves."
"We rethatch it ourselves, so it will be more our house."
Rethatching thatched roofs in Shirakawa-go, famous for its gassho-zukuri style of architecture. There is a group called " Kumi" or "Yui," and everyone in the village rethatches one house in one day.


My mother's birthplace was in a mountain village with a thatched roof.
I asked my grandfather, "Grandpa, don't the rain and snow sink into the house? He replied, "You see, we have a fire here on the hearth. This smoke goes up to the roof and dries and smokes the thatch. This is what makes a thatched roof strong. So you don't have to worry about it."
In such a house, we live together in peace and security, so we become closer and closer.

I think family is so interesting. Children cannot choose their parents, grandparents, or siblings.
They just happen to be born there, become children of that family, and live together.
It is not that they live together because they are close, or because they are intimate with each other, in the beginning.
We don't have a special day, we just go about our daily lives, one day at a time.
But as we live, we become a family. Before you know it, you become intimate and close, and a bond is formed that will never be shaken unconsciously.


Today's [family] is somewhat similar.
Each of us did not choose to be a part of this [family], but we became a [family] by chance.

And we live together, one day at a time, in a normal, non-special way.

We are close to each other, but because we live together, we become even closer, we melt into each other.
Then you will want to live together more and more. We become unshakable "one".
Not only the [families], but the entire community will be filled with such a spirit.
And not just the community...


After my activities in the Tokyo Young People's Association, I chose a completely different career path than my parents had hoped for.
I still have a letter in my desk from my mother, who was very much against it, and who was saddened and cried a lot.
"If you have decided on that path, you should finish it."
I became aware of the awesomeness of my parents. Those words at the end of the letter have been one of my driving forces for a long time.
No matter what happens, no matter what I do, family will always be family. My mother and father would never change, they would always look after me, they would always love me, there was no way they would ever hate me or give up on me, and no matter what I did, I would always be okay. I was always driven by a kind of air that floated in the depths of my heart, which was different from my consciousness, and it always became a gentle tailwind to move me along.

The air current that has been formed by living together with my father, mother, brother, and grandparents every day as a family has been unshakable and clear.
Riding on this current comfortably, I have seen people, interacted with people, and lived with people. .
I have made many friends and associates, and my relationships with them have deepened into brothers and sisters and family members.
When I became a parent, I realized that there was a never-ending wellspring that overflowed from within me, and that I would continue to pour out to my children. I soon came to realize that it is not limited to my own children.

And then there is the daily life in the current community.
The daily life depicted in Mr. Iwata's paintings, the daily life that appears in each person's place of work, the daily life that emerges in our daily lives...
The "daily life of play" that is unnoticed and danced with ingenuity and love on each stage in each corner of the community...
Where does this day by day life lead us?
Where shall we direct the overflow of our lives?
No matter what happens, no matter what we do, my [family] will not leave us alone, and no one will be left alone.
Being in the same lotus, not a lotus, but a big boat, day by day...our daily lives are…

Late last night, Ina-chan sent a picture to the [family] group LINE.
"Fireflies are flying above our rice paddies."

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Akari, Kokoro, Hana, Natsuki, Umi, Tatsumi, Sakuto...the faces of the children of the community, one after another, come to mind as their eyes light up at the glowing fireflies.
The rice paddies are about to be filled with early summer activity.
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