Recapturing a Place’s Atmosphere

Whenever I’ve been somewhere so many times it feels routing, I start going into automatic mode. I don’t seem to pay attention to my surroundings. When I go to new places, not only do I notice everything around me, I also feel the atmosphere of the place.

Thinking back to when I was a kid, I think I was always sensitive to the atmosphere of the places I was in. I got a certain mood from every place. I always remember camping at the Wapiti River, going to the playground near my house, and playing at recess in elementary school.  Later, after we moved to a new town, I always enjoyed the atmosphere of the undeveloped area behind our house. There was a forested area that I often walked through.

As I grew older, I found that I wasn’t feeling the atmosphere as much. But it wasn’t sudden, it was gradual. Or maybe as an adult, I’ve been distracted by inner thoughts, and just didn’t give my full attention to my surroundings. That’s probably more likely.

What I noticed earlier this week is that I was actually feeling the atmosphere of the place I was in. I was just going out to buy a drink during my lunch break, and as I walked past a temple, I slowed down and just looked around. I started noticing the details of the temple and the high-rise apartment building next to it. It was at that moment that it hit me. I could feel the atmosphere of the place. Not only that, it made me think about how it felt when I was a newcomer in Japan. Everywhere had an atmosphere. That’s one reason I started walking around neighbourhoods near train stations. I wanted to experience the atmosphere of different places. It fascinated me.

But lately, I haven’t really gone anywhere new. And then I decided what I would do with my YouTube channel, and I think I found a way to recapture that feeling. I started thinking about the places I could go, make videos, and share the atmosphere of the place with others. I want to give people a simple view of the place. Little talking, just observe what’s around. I decided to call this series A Taste of Japan. Maybe through this, I can regain that feeling of newness that I used to have. I hope I can. And I hope you’ll enjoy watching the videos, too.

Doing Collaborations

Recently, I’ve been asked to do some collaborations or to join a team on an online magazine or website. While these offers aren’t often, I’ve recently had a couple come up that look interesting, but I honestly cannot do.

It’s six months until we move to Canada. We’re busy with preparations. I work full time, and my free time is taken up by my family, this blog, and a couple other things I’ve taken on or already agreed to do. Authors Answer is my big collaboration project right now. It’s not stopping anytime soon.

Next year, after we’ve moved to Canada, I’ll be busy with getting everything settled in Canada, including school for my daughter, job, and taking classes. I’ll have more privacy at that time, so I can finally get some serious work done on Ariadne. That will be my creative priority, as well as this blog. Add on my YouTube channel, which I fully intend to regularly update, and I’m busy again.

I’ve had people ask me if I could review their book. I have a backlog of around two hundred books. I can’t take review requests at this time. It’s unlikely I ever will.

So, basically, I’m busy. I don’t have time to do anything extra. I have some things you don’t know about that I’m working on behind the scenes that are not related to this blog or my writing, but have to do with something else entirely.

So, I respectfully ask anyone who wants to collaborate with me to give me at least six months until I can commit to anything. I’ll update on this stance when I’m able to do something more. Thank you.