Mugon kan, how should I translate it into English? It is an art museum which displays the pictures of young art students or of young painters who have gone for compulsory service and died in the WWII. It is in Ueda City in Nagano Prefecture about 4 hours drive from here. I have seen a TV program showing this museum and the pictures displayed there some time ago. It made me feel I would visit there by any means. It was very fine and cool today. The best day for such a drive. The only misjudgement was that it was a week end and the traffic was a bit congested in an area in Nagano. Anyway, I have headed to that museum in the morning today.

It was located on a top of a hill in the suburb of Ueda City, which was surrounded with mountains all around. The building was 50 ft or so away from the parking lot. Only several cars have parked there. Surprisingly, some of them were from Saitama or Kanagawa, almost of the same distance from my home. This may mean it was not very popular among people but still attracted some people not only in the local area but from many places in the country.

This seemed to be a monument of the young painters dead in WWII. Their names were engraved on a palette shaped stone at a corner of the museum.   

The building of the museum was like a church. Not gorgeous but sound and steady appearance. 

It was forbidden to take photo of the works and letters etc displayed inside. The pamphlet is as follows;

It was dark inside and the pictures and letters were shed light. No noise nor talks. A dosen of people were looking at the works there. They were watching them intently without speaking anything. 

Most works were rather small but sure attracted our eyes. One of nudes was captioned as the model had been the painter's wife and the painter had told he would go on painting it for another 5 or 10 minutes. He was urged to go to war when finishing painting his that very last work and never came back home.

Watching each work, I noticed tears had dropped from my eyes, imagining how regrettable the young painters were leaving their artistic activities and dying away from their families. Most of them were killed within the last 2 years of the war. Some of them were dead due to illnesses in the war. I remembered among 3 million people, soldiers or civilians, killed in the war, more than half of them have died due to illnesses or malnutrition. The nation would treat us in this way once war started. 

Staying quiet there, this museum was much more eloquent against war than any demonstration or any abstract discussion protesting war, I thought. And I believe there were even more talented young people in Asia/Pacific area and in the US/allied countries who had been killed by the invasion of the military of our country in WWII. We should never forget of that fact as well.

Mugonkan stands for a museum without speech. The works and the records of the young painters themselves would move you without any political address or agitation. I thought it was how they had named this museum. In my view, this museum should be called a museum of silent palette. The palettes which won't be used any longer would appeal by themselves what those young people wanted to do.   

On the way back home, I have gone through the concourse before the railway station of Ueda. It was the place where I and company of med school took off a train and tool a bus to a hospital in the mountain area. We have had summer holiday training at that hospital for a few days. Over 40 years ago. Most of us are retiring or have retired from profession. I could not help but remembering what has happened to me in that period. Now I have finished my career as a doctor.

It has undergone a big change since that time. There was still a kind of atmosphere we had had in our medical student days. 

It deserved making this trip even though it was a bit tough one for me. Purchasing some souvenirs to my wife, I headed home on the high way. Sun was already sinking.


Indian lilac coming out

Indian lilac is blooming again. It has started blooming in the end of last month. In my image, it is always flowering in the late summer. It has been deadly hot since last month. That is why it has bloomed earlier than usual.

This again reminds me of my father who used to plant it there about 3
decades ago. Having lived the same length of time as he had here, I fully undersatand what he has thought of and has worried about. I should have sympathized him when he was alive. But it must be the way how people live and die. Soon, I will go into the eternal phase as my father did. Until that time, I am asked how to live for the next generation. 

Seeing this flower coming out in the garden, I again think of such a thing.

Spending a lot of time indoor, though, due to the heat wave. It is a pleasure for me to listen to music and to practise cello for a while.   


Global warming

It is still abnormally hot here. In the mid daytime, it gets around 35 degrees C every day. Mariegold could have been most vivid in this season. However, some of them are dying right now, especially those in a corner having sunshine all day long.

I could not help bitterly smiling to see no one is denouncing at a post in Facebook which claims of the importance of manuver against climate change. I just wonder if we have not passed the point of no return yet. I really hope the leader in every country will take active action for this problem. It would take decades to have response from anti global warming procedures. It is for our next generation.

Sweating a lot in the garden, I have poured water to trees and tomato plants etc. And I have pulled some weeds. I found it was quite tough to do that and finished it halfway. Coming back into the house, I had a glass of ume juice diluted with carbonated water on the rock. It is a home made one. Nothing is better and healthier than this one.

In the shadow, there is a bit of breeze blowing, which may usher in the arrival of fall. Is it too early? One month has passed since the summer solstice now. Maybe, in the end of this month, that sign of very early fall will get evident.

Perssimon is growing on the tree. It may offer us sweet fruits in fall.


Water melon first ever this summer

I have harvested a water melon for the first ever this summer. It is told the fruit gets ripe 35 days after fertilization. I haven't recorded the date of fertilization this time. And it was a betting when I should harvest it. It sounded hollow when it is hit by finger. I believed it was the sign of maturity. It was bingo.

Sweet and fresh. We could never expect any better one. I sure wish my mother was at the table for this water melon. She loved such a fresh one so much.

For the coming 2 or 3 days, we would enjoy it.


In the midsummer

We have been in a hot spell for a couple of weeks. They say it will last for another week. As Jim N3BB has summarized in his blog, this must be due to the climate change rapidly progrtessing since the end of last century. We should hurry coping with this natural as well as artificial disaster as soon as possible. It should be remembered mitochondrial DNA study reveals our ancestors have decreased to almost 2000 in number, that is, they were almost exterminated about 70,000 years ago. It was due to another natural climate change.

At the temp of around 35 degrees C this afternoon, I have mowed lawn in the yard. Weeds were growing rapidly. I hate using herbicides. Mowing weeds is an alternative to them even though weeds always win. Anyway, I fight a battle to be destined to be defeated.

In front of the street. I would like to make it neat and beautiful. 

Mariegold is fully blooming. I have them germinated from the seeds I collected from them last fall.

They will last for several weeks and please us much. Even though not so elegant or brillirant like roses etc. I love this Mariegold much. 

Repeatedly uploading photos of this tree, I took the photo of this zelkova since it has become our family tree. We have planted it decades ago in order to get shades at my parents' home. It was first only 4 or 5 meters high then. It has grown up to 15 meters. A gardener has cut the main trunk at about 10 meters of height last fall. Or it could cause damages to the house. Even though many branches were cut them, it has again grown this size now. It may go on watching what goes on at our family even after my parents were gone away.

This hot spell has slowed down growth of veggies now. However, some new plants of  tomatoes have grown from cut lateral buds of old ones. Hopefully, they may give us crops until early fall. 

Sometimes wondering how long I could do with the garden/farm here, I still go on working with them. Being in good health and with ability to work with them, what should I complain of? I still understand what my parents were thinking of when they both were working in the same way years ago. It is the way we pass our lives to the next generation.


Good chats with old friends

Twenty meters was quiet last night. It was empty as usual. RBN told me it had been open to both NA and Eu at the same time, though. Having repeated calling CQ for 2 or 3 times, I was called by several statessides in a row. Mostly old friends.

Among them, a QSO with Frank K0EJ was most impressive to me. He told he had moved to Fla where he could put up a small tribander on the roof. With barefoot, he seems to believe he is running only a tiny station. I could feel how excited he was being able to work with a JA with his set up. He seemed to quit as soon as he had finished sending a series of messages stereotyped as a rubber stamp to me. I told him his small set up was doing fine and I could read him perfect. Then he told me he had worked me many times as KA0GGI when he was in Missouri, I was not sure of his former QTH. Yes, this call sign sounded familiar and, since my PC log won't cover QSOs that long time ago, I looked it up in my index notebook. It told me we had first met in 1990. A long time ago. We were pleased to have this reunion after that long hiatus. In the end of the QSO, his signal was with deep and fast QSB and QRM, which made it a bit tough to read him. Until the very last moment of the QSO, I could understand what he had felt with this QSO. A really rare occasion of pleasure on CW nowadays.

The other QSOs with those like K4DGJ, W2MV or W9AC etc were as impressive as this one with Frank. It is always good to know how they are doing and to renew our friendship. It was a bit funny that most of them complained of lowered activity of CW. No exception. Yes, FT8 has brought some activity of CW into it. No competetion nor dislike with/for this new mode. Those who has been interested in this new mode must have operated CW in order to get as many entities as possible. They are not those interested in conversational CW.

Last month, I knew Erik SM0AGD had gone SK. He used to be active from various rare ones between 1970s and early 2000s. It was always fun for me to chase him those days. He sometimes added a few words to stereotypic report even from those rare countries. I have met him on the air only once or twice when he operated from his aprtment in SM0 land. I still respected him for his proficiency of operation and his personality. I have met him in person at a DX convention in Tokyo around 1990. He was what I had imagine about. A real great person. Hearing this sad news of his SK, I realized again most great operators like him those days had gone SK or inactive now. Like VK9NS, ZL1AMO, DK7PE or G3SXW etc. The latter two are still alive, I know. But the good old days have gone away now.

Treasuring every QSO last night, I was thinking of this declining of CW or even of ham radio. The great days have been going away.


How they are governing our country

This is a photo of the congressmen/women of the ruling party, LDPJ, surrounding our prime minister. They are enjoying Sake and foods together.

When do you think they have held this party? 

It was in the evening of July 5th. It was the time when  the torrents were starting causing terrible flooding/landsliding in the Western Japan. A few hours earlier, the meteorological agency has warned devastating disaster due to the torrential rain. It has victimized more than 100 people and 60 missing so far.

And it was the day before they would execute 7 convicts of death row. They have been sentenced to death years ago for their terrorism belonging to a cult. The terrorism issue has not yet elucidated clearly. Our prime minister and the minister of justice sitting right to him, a lady, had known of the execution the day after.

This shows how they are governing our country.

They are not concerned of the people or of the serious decision of execution. All they are concerned of is how to keep seats in the Congress and to maintain their power there.