One thing having kept me busy was discarding things unnecessary at my parent's home and arranging things in order there. Thousands of books, tons of photos and dozens of their clothes etc. For the last few days, I have been involved in sorting out the photos for each person taken or related with. I will distribute them to each person soon.
I once thought to discard most of them. It might be a trouble for them to receive those old low quality photos, I thought. While looking them through, however, I felt they were testifying that my parents had lived their lives on the earth. If they have any value to the people related with the photos, I thought, I should send the photos to each of them. It was a fascinating idea to scan and digitalize all the photos, I thought for a while. But I had to give it up due to too many numbers of the photos.
Some of the photos from my parent's albums;
My parents with my sister on mother's lap. It was taken a year or two after the WWII when they got married and settled down at the tuberculosis sanatorium as workers. It is right at this place where we live right now. A wooden cottage is seen on the back, which was used as patients' room. Such tiny houses were scattered around this place with pine trees between them. A quiet and peaceful place for those patients who had waited for the last time without any treatment. They have had firm belief in Christianity. My parents, of course partly thanks to their young age, look hopeful and positive from this picture, despite of their poverty. It also seems to be attributable to their belief. However, with antibiotics effective for tuberculosis being invented in a few years after this photo was taken, this facility was destined to lose its reason de etre. It was the time when our family departed to Tokyo.
This photo shows me and a good friend of mine at the college days. Somewhere in Kamakura, I can't remember. Both of us were around 20 years of age. We used to be together all the time like sweet hearts! We have talked a lot on literature, philosophy and so forth. Also grumbled a lot on our specialty, mechanical engineering. Later, he has gone to a faculty of philosophy while I have chosen the way to be an MD. It has been decades since I last met him. I should look for him by some means.
Our family taken some 20 years ago. My parents used to celebrate certain anniversary at this time. My sister now aged 70 years has been working as a nurse while brother 63 years now has been a psychiatrist. We owe so much to my parents who have given us chances of professional education. I have never heard them complaining of that burden on them at all. Now I know what it has been for them to raise us. They are surely missed.
Again, the thought how fast time is passing comes up in my mind. These photos will be forgotten by any folks in a few decades. Of course, it is due to oblivion of ourselves by them. It is not a pessimism but a reality. We are apt to forget this fact very easily. We are just travelers on the earth for a while. It is true that the more transient our lives are on the earth, the more serious we should be at living. However, at my age, I feel I should get ready for the end of life. Filled with good fond memories of the past in my mind, those photos showed to me, I still felt that way. I am a traveler on the earth.