Winter Dreams

As a child I loved every season for the adventures they had in store. Spring was awash with cherry blossoms, heavy coats a long-forgotten memory even before the last snow had melted away. Muddy boots were of no consequence to those of us determined enough to venture outdoors.

Summers found me hidden in the watermelon patch or on a spree to rob the best trees in the neighbourhood of their juiciest fruit. Did you ever wonder if those Russian novels had any basis in reality? My childhood was filled with fiction-like escapades. I did not know it then, but it was idillic – complete with treasure maps hidden at the bottom of a lake in the proverbial bottle.

Then there were Autumns… Naked feet stomping the grapes in my grandfather’s barrel. We laughed into the night so that the wine may be a happy one. Delighting in its must, we dreamt of the day when we’d be old enough to have the truth teased out of us by a taste of home-made nectar.

Winters were my favourite time of the year. Hidden on the stove, wind and snow making windows bud white with ice-flowers, one story weaved into another. It was a time of magic. Imagination ran free. The impossible was within reach and far-away places, real and fictitious, were all only one page away.

Japan Winter

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