Raised in the tumult of Japan’s industrial powerhouse, the 11 men and women profiled in A Different Kind of Luxury have all made the transition to sustainable, fulfilling lives. Based on Andy Couturier's popular articles in The Japan Times, this lushly designed volume has a wealth of stories about real people who have created an abundance of time for contemplation, connecting with the natural world, and contributing to their communities. In their success is a lesson for us all: live a life that matters. Read an excerpt of the book here or here. Read a review of the book here, here, or here.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Back to the Real

I'm back in the mountains of Japan.

Instead of me writing and talking about and showing slides about growing your own food, I am harvesting wheat.  Yamashita and Amemiya (chapters 9 and 5, respectively) planted this field in November, and we were harvesting it's "amber waves of grain" here at the end of May.

Again I can feel the rightness--at least to me--of doing things with my own hands: a sickle, wheat sheaves, pulling away the weeds, bundling them up, working in the sun. I came back to Yamashita's house with sore thighs, some very itchy bug bites, and a satisfied mind.

Oh, and a few wheat harvesting vocabulary words in Japanese and Bengali.

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