Friday, April 20, 2007

Snow, kimono? What’s it gonna be this weekend?

It’s 7:30 am on Saturday and I’ve been up for 3.5 hours, nursed Keenan, made Keenan breakfast, fed Keenan breakfast, nursed Keenan again and then suffered through 10 minutes of Keenan crying because he was simply too tired to fall asleep. Sean and I sat in the living room quiet as two house mice while Keenan wailed in his crib. Usually when we do this he gives in before 5 minutes and falls asleep or kicks up the intensity and rips my heart out with “wuh uh uh waaaaaaaaaaaAAAAAA” punctuated with “mum mum mum”. So I went in picked him up, snuggled him against me and then I deployed my secret weapon…the whispering of French lullabies. I don’t know very many and I'm more than pretty sure I get some of the words wrong but they sure as hell work wonders on our child when he gets himself worked into a “screw you mom and dad I'm not falling asleep” mood.

So now Keenan’s sleeping and after Sean paid his respects to my baby whispering by deeply bowing before me several times he headed back to bed as well. I’m not feeling much like going back to bed though and sadly I think it’s because I’m getting used to Keenan’s new starting hour of 4 am. So perhaps I’ll blather on here for a while.

I must say that I while I lay in bed at 4 am in a haze of procrastination and prayers for Keenan to magically talk himself to sleep I found myself wondering what the weather was up to on the other side of our bedroom curtain. You see during the months of April and May winter mysteriously only works on the weekends. I’m not kidding. We’ve woken up to snow on either Saturday or Sunday morning nearly every weekend save for one this month. Same thing happened last year. I won’t go so far as to say it never snows during the week. It might snow a bit but we get seriously dumped on over the weekend. I think we got almost 25 cm last Saturday during the daylight hours alone but come Monday you could barely tell. I opened the curtains to rain this morning but there’s enough chill in the air to coax flakes from the skies if the temp drops a few degrees.

In other news, yesterday we got a flyer in the mail from a local kimono shop advertising a huge sale. I love everything about kimono shops. The colorful, patterned and beautifully textured fabrics, the accessories, the purses, hair ornaments, the impeccable customer service and the long list of traditional must have accoutrements whose purpose I can’t even fathom. These shops are packed with “stuff”. Stuff you could blissfully spend hours sifting through only to find many other layers of more stuff beneath begging for your attention. So it’s never a “quick” visit to a kimono shop especially not one packed to the rafters with sale goods. And it's typically not a place you go to with a baby that’s a bit whingy because he blew off his afternoon nap but we went anyways. We ended up spending 5500 yen total for a very pretty, formal obi thanks to Sean’s keen eye, some great kimono fabric scraps, 2 small wall hangings and 2 noren. A good haul by my standards. But and this is a big BUT, the best deal I have ever laid my hands on in all my life was at that shop and I didn’t buy it. I had to curb my desire and exercise the “24 hour + sleep on it rule” as I wasn't sure if I wanted to buy it because it was such a freakin’ good deal or because I actually liked and wanted it. Need doesn’t factor into this equation and I know you know exactly what I’m talking about. So what was this fabled deal of the century? A 580000 yen (approx $5800 and yes that is the correct number of zeros) silk kimono for 3900 yen (approx $39). I walked away from it for 4 reasons…it was only basted and not yet sewn, a bit dirty, a bit faded from the sun and it was unlined. The fading was minor and the liner doesn’t matter to me as I’d never wear it and would only hang it on a wall or stash it away in a box as my most prized, most deeply discounted find. The dry cleaning would be costly and it would take me a while to hand-stitch it back together. But geez, the whole process and the thing itself sure makes for such a great story doesn’t it? Not to mention that the kimono itself is quite lovely. It’s not something I would have been attracted to at first glance as it is very light in color but the pattern and embroidery are very traditional and quite beautiful. Naturally I’ll be going back today for a reassessment come snow, rain or screaming baby!

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