Sunday, September 15, 2013

Camping in Tokyo

I feel sorry for kids who are not playing outside today.  I sit on our back porch getting the best of both worlds - writing and being outside all at the same time.  It is so beautiful.

The neighbors rented some sort of blow up jumpy castle contraption for what I guess was a birthday party yesterday afternoon.  Though I can't see it, I can hear it. Children have been screaming three backyards over for over 26 hours with only a short break to go inside for the sleeping part of the sleep-over.  I think it must have been a 48 hour rental, because although sounds have died down a bit, there are certain indications that children are still jumping.

Our yard in Tokyo would never have accommodated the kind of jumping toy our neighbors have rented.  I do remember sleep-over camping in our small yard in Tokyo, though.  We had more yard than many of our friends, even though our tent took up half the grassy space.  In fact, most of my friends had no yard at all. Dad helped set up the tent in the afternoon, and one or two friends and I climbed in through the zippered entrance at dusk with flashlights to ward off the monsters until morning.  I was never really afraid of the Japanese monsters.  They never looked real to me, with their two little horns sticking out of the top of their heads and blue and red skin like someone had colored them with a crayon.

Before we got in the tent, our friends marveled at the weenie roast and precious marshmallows Mom had to go all the way to downtown Tokyo's Kinokuniya to purchase and carry home on the train.  Behind our cinder block wall in Mitaka, Tokyo, in our tiny little yard, we spent an exciting night with nature, even though the only wildlife we encountered up close were mosquitoes and the screaming sounds of cicadas.

 Coleman Tents Camping Gear


  1. I love this. I think it is wonderful, so loving, and wise that your parents made sure to replicate normal American experiences for their third world children. I mean, think about it. My parents didn't think to provide Japanese, Indian, Guatemalan experiences for us! I grew up in exactly the opposite Eastern Pennsylvania forest of huge deciduous trees. Our campouts were often just bedrolls under the huge, star-filled darkest of dark nights. But, we shared the same pesky mosquitoes and noisy crickets! :) I, too, feel sorry that many kids won't know the night and sense of safety sleeping outside.

    1. So nice to have your comments on my posts, Sue. Looks like Jennifer's children are getting lots of outside experiences!