Monday, January 09, 2006

And then there was snow...

You go away to Malaysia for three weeks and a lot of snow falls in Hokkaido. In fact, Japan is experiencing record snowfall at the moment. It's not quite as bad here as it is in Niigata and Nagano prefectures -- we don't have 4 meters of snow. Yet. I keep being told that we don't have as much snow this year as we usually do. I don't know, the stuff on my driveway was knee to hip height on me. At any rate, having to dig out my car and clear out the driveway was no small task. I could have used some help from the Japanese Self Defence Forces.

Instead, I had help from my wonderful neighbor. Yesterday evening, I was taking a break from shovelling when my neighbor came home. He came over to say hello and we chatted for a bit. He seemed surprised to find that I was going to drive my car this winter at all -- everyone I talk to seems to be surprised at this. I don't think my predecessor drove this car at all last winter, so I suppose it isn't that unusual of an assumption. He asked if I needed any help, but I was done what I was going to do for the day. The rest would wait until the morning. I finished up what I was going to do for the day and went inside, thinking no more of our conversation.

Until a friend of mine came over later that evening... I went to the door to let her in and what did I see there? My neigbor, shovelling out the rest of the driveway! I could have kissed him. Instead, I'll just be giving him a nice thank you present from Malaysia. Thank goodness I decided to pick up some extra souveneirs for just such a possibility.

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