In the ten years we have lived in Tokyo I consider us lucky to have avoided the terrible weather that is Tokyo. We manage to leave for the summer before the rainy season begins, return when all that remains of said rainy season is the jungle of weeds that is my garden, and sigh from afar when CNN reports that it’s 40 degrees Celsius (104 F) while secretly thinking, “Thank God I’m not there”. It appears that your luck runs out at year 10.
Today I hopped in my car in my driveway and turned on the motor for the sole purpose of checking the thermometer and verifying what my body was already telling me. It was 39 degrees. I decided that this was the perfect time to walk down to my little grocery store and nearby flower shop. “Down” being the key word. I bought Cascade, a 1.5 liter bottle of Coke, tomatoes, and bananas. Read “heavy”. I left the flower shop with two hibiscus plants and some vincas because nothing else will withstand this heat. With my arms loaded down, I willed myself home. I actually gave myself little pep talks.
“You can do this.” “Just one step at a time.” “Think of the muscles you’re building and pounds you are sweating off.” “You’re an idiot.” “What the h@#$ were you thinking?”
I passed a little Japanese construction worker. He smiled at me and bowed, but his eyes said, “You’re an idiot. What the h@#$ were you thinking?”
Just as the muscles in my back were starting to spasm, I reached the “up” part of my journey. The last 200 yards to our house is about a 30 degree incline. Just enough. I managed to make it in the doorway totally zapped of energy, sweat dripping down my entire body, silently cursing myself for not driving and risking the little green men who delight in giving extravagant tickets to shoppers who take more than five minutes.
The flowers are still sitting in the genkan and will have to wait until 5:00 tomorrow morning to be planted when hopefully it will only be 30 degrees.