Today, my Mam arrives from Newcastle in England and I`m very excited! She`s coming to celebrate my birthday and also to see the autumn colours in Japan. She`s been to Japan quite a few times, but never during this, my favourite season. I`m planning on taking her to Kyoto and also Nara to enjoy the reds, yellows, and oranges of the season.
My mother is now 80 but she`s still pretty fit and active. We`ve traveled together many times and all over the world, including South America, India, China, and South East Asia. When she was younger, she didn`t have the money or the opportunity to see the world, as she had 4 children to bring up and my dad didn`t earn a lot of money working as a mathematics teacher. However, we would always go somewhere during our school holidays, especially in Scotland, where we enjoyed exploring the fantastic, remote areas in the north west of that country.
I moved to America to study when I was 22 and that was when my Mam started traveling long distances, to meet me and to explore my new surroundings. In the States, we took a big train trip around the west and centre of that huge country, visiting Chicago, the Grand Canyon, San Fransisco and other places.
Since then, I`ve lived in China, Italy and now Japan and she has always come to visit me. In China, we made three trips, exploring many of the fascinating sights, including an unforgettable journey in Tibet. I lived in Italy for 6 years and my Mam visited me dozens of times. I think she would have liked to have moved there herself!
I have so many great stories about things that have happened to me and my mother during our trips together, I often think about writing a book.
Now that she is getting older, I worry about her health and safety. I live so far away from her and sometimes I feel guilty that I`m not nearer to lend a helping hand. But for now, while she can still get on an aeroplane without too much stress, I`m hoping to stay in Japan and that Mam can come and stay with me when she wants.
In my next blog entry, I plan to write about what we did together during her stay here, so watch this space!