Thursday, May 12, 2011

Aimless Reading: The M's, Part 63.6 (Haruki Murakami)

Murakami, Haruki
South of the Border, West of the Sun

Purchased at Talking Leaves…Books. Read by Lori.

As if I didn't have enough on my mind between selling the house and waiting for the birth of my daughter, yesterday I broke my left (writing side) elbow. I was riding my bike and swerved to go around a speed bump. The rear tire slid out from under me on some loose gravel and I went down on my hand, cracking the radial head on my left arm. I need a CT scan to determine whether it requires surgery. I broke the other radial head on my right arm in 2007 in another bicycle accident. Typing sort of hurts, though not as bad as I would have thought. I'll see how things progress. All for now…

from South of the Border, West of the Sun

My birthday's the fourth of January, 1951. The first week of the first month of the first year of the second half of the twentieth century. Something to commemorate, I guess, which is why my parents named me Hajime--"Beginning" in Japanese. Other than that, a 100 percent average birth. My father worked in a large brokerage firm, my mother was a typical housewife. During the war, my father was drafted as a student and sent to fight in Singapore; after the surrender he spent some time in a POW camp. My mother's house was burned down in a B-29 raid during the final year of the war. Their generation suffered most during the long war.

When I was born, though, you'd never have known there'd been a war. No more burned-out ruins, no more occupation army. We lived in a small, quiet town, in a house my father's company provided. The house was prewar, somewhat old but roomy enough. Pine trees grew in the garden, and we even had a small pond and some stone lanterns.

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