… is perhaps something I never thought much about as a teenager. My own teenager this snowy day has a koi she’s intricately drawing in pen and ink, solely for pleasure. As dusk began falling, she started the tractor of her own volition and plowed the driveway, then came in and baked a pan of brownies.
My nephew, age 12, sent me 14 “perfect Japanese words.” I could use a little more of this boy in my life….
komorebi: sunlight filtering through trees
irusu: pretending to be out when someone knocks at your door
shinrin-yoku: literally ‘forest bathing’ – a visit to the forest for relaxation and to improve your health
isundoku: the act of buying a book and leaving it unread, often piled together with other unread books
ukiyo: literally ‘the floating world’ – living in the moment, detached from the bothers of life
majime: an earnest, reliable person who can simply get things done without causing drama
yugen: a profound awareness of the universe that triggers a deep emotional response
yoisho: a word without meaning, said when flopping into a chair after a hard day at work
wasuremono: forgotten or lost things; an item left behind on a train or forgotten at home
hikikomori: when a young person who is obsessed with TV, video games, and the internet, withdraws from society
bimyou: not bad, or ‘meh’
shibui: old school cool
kuidaore: to eat yourself into bankruptcy
and…. what else?… ikigai: a reason for being, the thing that gets you up in the morning…. perhaps the word of greatest importance of all….