2016年4月23日土曜日

秋月のおばあさん・About the old lady in Akizuki

最近、秋月へのサイクリングの旅の写真を投稿した。ところで、投稿する前に気づいていなかったが、アパートから秋月までの距離は博多駅までとほぼ同じだ。笑 そこまで自転車で乗るなんて考えたことがなかったけど、いつか博多駅まで乗ってもいいかも。

とにかく、写真だ。一つの写真の中にはおばあさんを見える。


秋月の観光地で写真を撮っていた時、彼女の野菜の露店に近づいた。彼女の野菜を刻んでいる姿を映りたかったけど、彼女にどんな野菜を刻んでいるかと聞いた後、その質問を答えて、そして春の七草の話をした。教えてくれた野菜の名前を全く忘れたけど、「七草」だけ覚えた。春と秋と冬の七草について話したけど、春と秋の七草の情報しか見つけていない。

七草が何なのか考えている人は僕の集めた七草の名前のリストを見てもいい。なぜそのリストを作ったか分からないんだけど・・・


(セリ) Water dropwort (変だけど、本当の英語の名前だ)
御形(ごぎょう、ハハコグサ) Gnaphalium affine英語では一般人に使われる名前はないので、科学的な生を書いた)
仏座(ほとけのざ) Henbit deadnettle
すずしろ Japanese wild radish
はこべ Chickweed



ちょっと変だけど、見つけた七草は5つしかなかった。春の七草の名前を調べるのはかなり時間がかかったので、読書者に秋の七草の捜索を任せる。どっちがシーザーサラダのドレシングとピッタリ合う味があるか教えてくれ。

ある時、おばあさんは近い木に行って、かがんで、小さい草を摘んで、七草の一つだと言った。念のために、本当に食べられるか聞いて、はいと言われた。必要ではないけど、貧乏の食べ物を食べる人がいるのは面白くない?レタスやキャベツはそんなに高くないので、木の下から草を摘むのは要らないよ、おばあさん。笑 しかし、彼女は87歳だと言った。老人の山女といえば、山草を摘むことだな。しょうがない。

あ、そうだ、山だ。おばあさんは豊臣秀吉が近所の山にやられたと言ったけど、僕は自分で調べて、大阪に近く死んだと歴史に登録していることになった。僕は何か誤解したか、おばあさんは嘘つきなのかということだ。

もう一つの面白いことを教えてくれたけど、彼女は英語を全然話せない原因は、アメリカとイギリスは敵国だったので、英語を勉強するのが禁止だったって。おばあさんは中学生の頃から、世界はいっぱい変わったな。笑

***

I recently posted pictures from a cycling trip I took to Akizuki. By the way, I hadn’t realized it before posting on my blog, but Akizuki is approximately the same distance from my apartment as Hakata station is. lol I never would have even considered riding my bike there until now, but it might not be such a bad idea some time in the future.

Anyway, back to the pictures. In one of the pictures, you can see an old lady. I approached her small vegetable booth while taking pictures in a tourist area of Akizuki. I wanted to take her picture while she was chopping some vegetables, but after I asked her what vegetable she was chopping, she decided to answer my question, and then tell me about seasonal vegetables in Japan. I forgot completely what vegetables she told me about, but I do remember one word, nanakusa, which literally means "seven grasses/weeds". She told me of nanakusa for spring, fall, and winter, but I have only found information on the nanakusa for spring and fall.

For the people that are wondering what those plants are, here is a list I've compiled, although I don't know why.

(セリ) Water dropwort (I'm not making this up).
御形(ごぎょう、ハハコグサ) Gnaphalium affine (there is no common English name, but it may be some kind of cudweed). One of the ways to call this plant in Japanese means "mother-child weed".
仏座(ほとけのざ) Henbit deadnettle (this is real).
すずしろ Japanese wild radish
はこべ Chickweed

Strangely, there are only 5 spring nanakusa. I have spent far too much time finding those plants' names, so I leave it to the reader to find out the nanakusa for fall. Let me know which of them looks like they would taste the best with caeser salad dressing.

At one point, the old lady walked over to a nearby tree, bent down, and picked some small weed out of the ground and told me it was one of the seven spring herbs. I asked her, just to be sure, if the plant she was holding was edible, and she said yes. It’s funny to think that there are still people that eat what most people consider “poor people food” when they probably don’t even need to. Lettuce and cabbage aren’t so expensive that you have to pick weeds out from underneath trees, lady. lol However, she said she is 87 years old. What else would I expect from an old mountain lady?

Ah yes, the mountain. She mentioned that Toyotomi Hideyoshi, one of the well-known predecessors to Tokugawa Ieyasu (the first Shogun that closed Japan and ushered in the Edo period) was killed on the mountain neighboring Akizuki. However, upon further research, history records him as dying far away near Osaka. Either the old lady was a big fat liar or I didn't understand what she said.

One other interesting thing she told me is that she can't speak English because when she was in school, the US and England were enemy nations, so nobody was allowed to learn English. The world has changed a lot since she went to junior high school. lol
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