when i lived in tacoma, i was disappointed the weather was so chilly most of the time that smells didn't permeate the air. i was used to the sun-warmed smell of everything: flowers, earth, my cotton t-shirt, someone's shampoo. only in the warm summers did tacoma have much of a smell (save the ever-threatening and non-weather-reliant stink of the paper mills). so far mie is the opposite. a billion peculiar, moisture-related smells assault my nose each morning on my walk to school: rain smell, mold smell, ocean smell, green onion smell (unexplainable, but not bad), earth smell (that one's nice), pee smell (not so nice), rotting something smell (bad), and OCCASIONally the blessed smell of flowers. i already collected smells like trading cards, but some of these i could forego.
the air here is so heavy it seems positively unbreathable. just as the entire body rebels to inhale when you're underwater, sometimes i feel my lungs are waiting for dry air to really expand. um, don't hold your breath, right? i have another 11 months here, i better start breathing.
since i've been here, i've noticed my unconscious tendency to search everything for something familar, something that resonates because i understand it. <--(ooh! i've never typed html before.) in each japanese person i meet, i see traces of people i know, echoes of my entire life until now. it's like my past is already haunting me in a comforting way. i've met a guy who resembles nate, a friend who died several years ago. i think of my grandmother (who also died) more here than ever at home because my house echoes the shape and smells of her house in texas. sometimes these non-tangible people accompany me on my journey even more than the living because they have nothing better to do. it's nice to have time to remember them.