Tuesday, May 29, 2012

The Thunder Rolls... and Eats

Unsettled weather in Japan right now, we've had a few rather loud thunderstorms the last couple of days. Now as I've previously mentioned, I LOVE thunderstorms. Growing up in Nevada, afternoon thunderstorms were just par for the course during the summer. Sure, you had to clear the pool, keep an eye on the cows (Er, that is you looked at the cows, if they were lying down a storm was probably on its way), and of course there was always the fear of wildfire, but other than that... it was free entertainment. A wild ride in the sky as the lightning would dance and flash and the house shake as the thunder boomed.
How can you not like this?
It was also a chance to get some rain, usually in short downpours that would soak the ground and cause some mini-floods, just to quickly dry up and sink into the parched earth of the Great Basin Desert, but for a place as dry and usually rain free as Nevada, it was interesting.

Beloved hates thunderstorms. The traditional four fears of the Japanese are Thunder, Fire, Earthquakes, and Father. Beloved is not too worried about fire, handles earthquakes with aplomb, has grown more comfortable about her father, and is still scared to death of Thunder. Part of it might come from a Japanese legend about the thunder god. There is an old folk belief that Raijin, the kami of Thunder, eats the belly buttons of children who leave them uncovered, thus are children told to hide their belly buttons when they hear the thunder boom. Chances are this more of a reason to get kids to sleep with at least their stomachs covered instead of outside their blankets, but it makes an interesting tale for this foreigner.

Of course, Makoto has been told about the story and during a thunderstorm he acted scared and kept hiding his tummy with his hands, convinced that the Thunder God was coming to eat such a delicious and cute belly button. The very next storm however and he started enjoying the thunder and lighting with his father, possibly thinking that no self-respecting thunder god would challenge Daddy.
What it looks like now
Beloved of course shrieked.

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