Monthly Reflections


May Monthly Reflections

   Recently, an unforgivable killing of a Japanese resident occurred in Vancouver. It is a very sad case indeed, and I cannot help but be outraged. I ask that everyone please pay close attention to the safety information from the Consulate General of Japan and local news reports, and to please stay safe. Below is my activity report for the month, compiled as of the end of May.  

○Aurora Borealis and Climate Change?  

As mentioned at the beginning of this page, various changes in weather conditions are observed, including another cold snap and early outbreaks of wildfires. I am not sure if so-called climate change is the cause of these changes, but it is affecting various industries and causing daily water withdrawal restrictions. In the midst of all this, the aurora borealis were seen in Vancouver for the first time in 19 years recently, and it became a hot topic of conversation. Although it was pointed out that the effects of solar activity may cause communication problems with cell phones and other devices, the beauty of the lights seen in the sky was truly moving. Although it was only for a brief period of time, I was able to witness the ever-changing shapes and colours, and it was the first time in my life that I could experience the aurora borealis. 

○Vancouver Marathon  

Some of you may have participated in the Vancouver Marathon. In early May, the Vancouver Marathon, known worldwide for the beauty of its course, was held. I had the pleasure of meeting with last year's champion Mr. Kawauchi and his wife who visited Vancouver and asked them about the harshness and appeal of the marathon. At the reception held before the marathon race, I also met Canadian medalists and runners from Japan. As I can barely run 10 km, a full marathon is an unknown world to me. 

○Japanese Language Promotion  

I was invited again this year to the graduation ceremony of Gladstone Japanese Language School, which boasts a long history of 53 years, where graduates from each of the elementary, junior high, and high schools shared their various memories and current students celebrated with a heartfelt performance of the Soran-bushi traditional folk song. I wish the graduates a bright future. I also hope to see many more of these young “bridges” between Japan and Canada be created in the future.  


In May, Japanese pianist Hayato Sumino also known by his YouTube name of Cateen, performed in Vancouver, and I was mesmerized by his outstanding performance. He performed with the Vancouver Metropolitan Orchestra led by Ken Hsieh. When I think of Gershwin's piano works, all I could think of was “Rhapsody in Blue,” but what he performed this time was a concerto in F major. I was ashamed of my ignorance of such a wonderful piece of music, but I was also grateful for the encounter with a masterpiece. 

○Activity of business community  

I was honoured to be invited to the annual meeting of the Japanese Business Association of Vancouver (Konwakai), which has been renamed the Vancouver Japanese Business Association of Commerce and Industry “(KONWAKAI)”, and I had the honour to deliver opening remarks. As an important pillar of the local business community, I wish for its further growth and development. The winners of the BC Japanese Speech Contest, which is supported by the association, also attended the meeting and gave excellent Japanese speeches. It was a pleasure to meet the winners again. 
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