In Japan the school year begins in April—with emerging blossoms rather than falling leaves—and so, despite continuing difficulties, this past week children began their new classes, some of them amid vast stretches of earthquake and tsunami rubble.
A few years ago we spent this season with friends in Japan. With kindness, good nature, and interest, they found, and accompanied us to, an exceedingly long Easter church service. Afterward we transplanted to their home our family’s Easter basket treasure hunt, a tradition begun by my mother that I have continued with my own children. This time, though, the clues were bilingual, the English ones first written by me and then rewritten in Japanese by my son. (Later we copied the clues here into my travel sketchbook.)
Today is also the anniversary of the founding of the Library of Congress. For sketches and a saga, please see Library of Congress.