MOONLIGHT CAFE  

Welcome to my blog of English essays.  

Bigtwin Bike

2014年11月30日 16時33分46秒 | Motorcycle
The Days I Spent With Leica ~ "Bigtwin Bike" ※The photo is not the one.

I like a motorcycle (bike). I don't have likes and dislikes about a type of a bike. Any bikes look fascinating with or without high performance for me. Further, I don't mind riding it even in the scorching summer or in the freezing winter. If you ask me, however, to choose the best in the types and the seasons, I choose a bigtwin bike and autumn.

As you may have an especial song which encourages you in facing a hardship or makes you shed tears for unforgettable love, you may also have a special novel which affected you deciding something special. I came across such a novel in my younger days. The story has no violence and sex. The only memories of adolescences are described simply in a sentimental way; in the late October, a young man is going uphill on a gentle mountain road, riding Kawasaki W3. It is the bike of a bigtwin (vertical twin) engine of 650cc. It is the first time for him to visit his hometown in four years after the high school graduation. He is going to visit his ex-high school teacher before joining the high school reunion. His house is a small, but swell French restaurant. It has been run by his wife. He and his close friends used to hang out there after the class in high school days. The friends are also supposed to gather there today. In the deepening autumn, the exhaust sound of the vertical twin engine echoes in the mountains. The stage sets well. Then, flashbacks of young days start...

This novel imprinted my way of enjoying a bike, a solo tour, and also my favorite season, autumn, into my subconscious.

When I was young, however, I didn't ride a big twin bike. I used to go for a ride with my friends here and there, everywhere in Japan, though, I rode multi cylinders engine bike. Because, we liked to make a mock race on a mountain road, and needed the fast bike so as not to be fall behind the group.
Time passed, however, I became a seasoned rider as I knew it before. I am not as interested in a group tour and the mock race as I used to be. I don’t have to hurry in the travel, and also in life anymore.
So, I want to ride a bigtwin bike. It can be best company for traveling alone because of its fascinating exhaust notes and comfortable vibration. It is difficult to explain them in sentences, however, I think you can understand them if you have heard the V twin engine sound of Harley Davidson on the street. The sounds of a vertical twin and a V twin engine resemble, which sound strongly and heavily like beating a big drum.
I like the both bigtwin engines. The former, however, sounds a bit lightly and gently. A bike of a vertical twin engine may be more suitable for the trip in Japan. You can enjoy the exhaust note and also comfortable vibration as long as you can. The sound will lure you to go furtherer.

Now, I grow up, marry and have the little twins. I rarely have the opportunity to go out alone for my leisure activity, to say nothing of going for a ride even in the consecutive holidays. The certification of motorcycle safety inspection of my motorcycle, YAMAHA SRX 600, a single cylinder engine, already passed its expiration date many years ago, and that motorcycle has remained dormant in my garage since then. Nevertheless, when another autumn comes, I always remember the days when I rode a bike. Because, it is near the end of the year. Everyone becomes sentimental. So do I. The sky seems to be higher than summer, and the air is crisp. When you ride a bike and go on the road with dancing withered leaves in the wind, you must feel as if you became a part of the wind. If you experience this situation even only once, you must understand what I mean. It is the moments of euphoria that only a rider can feel. The autumn is the best season for riding a bike.

There is nothing more fascinating than riding a bigtwin bike in autumn.


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Nightfall

2014年11月03日 10時28分14秒 | Photograph
Last night, I posted my favorite photo taken by Leica with the concerned my musing. Though it was my first trial, the number of access to this blog swelled to my surprise. I reaffirmed the greatness of the name, "Leica”...

The Days I Spent With Leica~"Nightfall”
This is the title of the photo. I took this photo many decades ago in Paris. It was the first city which I visited as a foreign country in my younger days. It was too long ago for me to remember the camera and lens I used then; however, even now I can remember the atmosphere of Paris in the nightfall to see this photo.

As I am going to keep posting them once in a week, maybe in a weekend, please boost my blog, leaving any comment to my photo and musing in English possibly.
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Indifference

2014年11月01日 21時07分30秒 | Photograph
I like to take photos. Above all kinds of photos, I like a snapshot on the street. I belong to a camera club in Tokyo, and sometimes display my photos to its exhibition. However, I wanted to show my photos to more people. I have already tried several means for this purpose; Firstly, I posted my photos to Facebook. I quitted it soon as I knew that the people whoI like to take photos. Above all kinds of photos, I like a snapshot on the street. I belong to a camera club in Tokyo, and sometimes display my photos to its exhibition. However, I wanted to show my photos to more people. I have already tried several means for this purpose; Firstly, I posted my photos to Facebook. I quitted it soon as I knew that the people who access my Facebook are restricted. Secondly, I posted ones to such web sites for amateur photographers to post their photos as GANREF and PHOTOHITO. I stopped it again as I felt it meaningless that I had to stay anonymous there, most of the comments that I received were flatteries and I had to write back to them as a courtesy. Thirdly, I posted them to Facebook groups of amateur photographers which are run by foreign people. The reasons why I joined the group are that the foreign members rarely leave me a comment, however, if left, they are not flatteries, but reasonable. And I can make friends with them, and boost up my command of English.

My third trial was successful. I have been posting my photos there. Further, I decide to post the same photo in this blog for the longtime audiences, and change the title of this blog that I had used for many years since my twins’ birth. I am pleased if the audiences would enjoy my photos along with the related musing as before. And also the other new people who love a photo would access to this blog easily by searching a keyword included in the title - Leica. I know that a cameraman should not explain the photo. The photo should tell itself. However, this is my blog, and the photo comes later. If I omitted the musing and posted only photo, it would be like putting the cart before the horse.

The Days I Spent With Leica~"Indifference"
This is the title of this photo. What makes me bothering are electric games. My son, who used to like to read a book, draw a picture and so on, has been into playing the games for a few years. It started from a simple game in my iPhone. At first, he only sometimes borrowed my iPhone and played the game. However, he came to occupy one, and the playing time became longer and longer day by day. I understand that electric games are interesting as I played Invader Game in my younger days. But, even then, I only played it for taking a breather. I am afraid that he has been into the game excessively, playing the game not only in the house, but also in a nearby game arcade.
I took this photo in a near aquarium when I and my son visited there. The photo is beautiful; however, I was sad that my son did not show interest towards mysterious jellyfishes, but only concentrated in the game...

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Filson Magnum Camera Bag

2014年10月18日 14時18分37秒 | Photograph
You don't know when a shutter chance for taking a good photo turns up. You can make it a rule to carry a camera with you wherever to go. If you never want to miss the shutter chance, you always have to have a camera on your hand... It is not practical, however, to carry a camera exposed as it sometimes rain or else. You need a camera bag. The bag should be your favorite one and also as small and light as possible to continue the aforementioned rule practically.

As a matter of course, prior to choosing the bag, you choose your favorite camera first. Although I chose my favorite cameras several years ago, I have ended up exchanging my bag a few times since then as the inner sizes of all bags didn't fit my cameras rightly. But, I could barely settle in the two bags recently. One is for taking a walk and snaps with one camera. The other is for a little bit more serious photography with two cameras and more. The former is “Billingum for Leica”. The latter is “Harvey Messenger Bag of FILSON”.

I got the package of FILSON delivered last night. I opened the package immediately when getting home from the office. My main concern about the bag was if the inner size fit my camera suitably. The bag is a little bigger than I thought (not too big!). It is OK. And, its color showed “Magnum Black” on the website. How is the color? Does it look great? Magnum Black is deep green rather than black. I like deep green. It is also no problem. Although the little tabs with the buttons under the front two pockets seem to be fragile as someone cautioned about it on the website (please see the photo), I don’t care so much. The only drawback I notice is that it smells oily a little. But, it will fade out soon during everyday use. All in all, I am satisfied with this bag. My trip to find my favorite bag seems to come to an end with this bag. I want to use this bag to a frazzle.

Might as well have your most favorite camera bag!

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Skittle

2014年02月23日 19時59分29秒 | Others
Skittle

I bought a skittle last year. A skittle, which is also called “a hip flask”, is a flatly curved, metal bottle for taking whisky outside. The name of a skittle is said to stem from the name of the old game “skittle” in England, which is the origin of a bowling game, as the skittle’s shape resembled the shape of a pin used for the game.

I often take the skittle outside with me in winter. You may regard me as an alcoholic man or a heavy drinker because most of Japanese people do not have such a custom. They usually drink such brew as beer and Japanese sake, which is made from rice and has lower alcohol content. Whisky is distilled spirit of high alcohol content, which is made from malted barley and the other grains. In fact, my wife, who tastes a wine, does not like to drink whisky, saying that it tastes like a medicine. Coming back to the point, I am not suffering from the alcohol abuse. The reason I take the skittle outside is that I only want to sip whisky to get rid of the cold. I recommend this way for you when you are in the cold outside where you cannot find the other way to warm myself. I am sure that whisky will work to warm you up.

Incidentally, you may also think why I do not buy a small grass bottle of whisky. It is as portable as the skittle and is sold in any convenient shop in Japan. There are four reasons that I use the skittle:

Firstly, a grass bottle is more fragile for the use in the outside. A skittle is made from such metals as silver, titanium and stainless. Each metal has a merit and a demerit, however, it is stronger and lighter compared to the grass bottle.

Secondly, a skittle looks better than a grass bottle. Imagine the scene that a friend of yours takes the grass bottle sneakily from his pocket and sips the whisky on a street. Any Japanese people seeing this may regard it a bad habit. On the other hand, if they see him using a skittle, they take him as a cool guy. Of course, this depends on how he looks himself to high degree...

Thirdly, skittles vary in size and design. As I wrote at first, a skittle is used popularly in England, most of famous skittle’s makers such as Pinder Bros and Alchemy Pewter are there. You can have fun to look for your favourite one. My skittle is 6oz and is carved the picture of fly-fishing.

Fourth, this is the most important reason for me. As long as I use the skittle, I can choose my favourite whisky from numerous kinds of big whisky bottles. As the number of small grass bottles of whisky is less, my choice for the whisky is restricted. For my part, I could not find my favourite whiskies, single malt whiskies of Islay in Scotland such as Ardbeg, Lagavulin, Bowmore and so on. These whiskies have the specific taste and flavour of peat*, salt and seaweed. As they have such strong characters, they are called “loud spirit”. Grain malt whiskies which do not have such strong characters are called “silent spirit”. So, at first you may feel awkward to them when tasting one of them. However, if you are once accustomed to the taste, you will love it and feel it lacked something for the grain malt whiskies.

I am fond of taking photographs. I want to take photographs of deserted, atmospheric landscapes in Scotland. Now, I am just toy of thinking of the tour. But, when I belt the Islay single malt whisky in my skittle, I can imagine such landscapes of Scotland, and feel tipsier. In the tour, my favourite skittle has to be in my hip pocket. I cannot part with a skittle.

(NB) * Peat is translated into “mud charcoal” in Japanese. It is an accumulation of decayed plants such as heather, and is used for a fossil fuel to dry malted barley. This gives Islay single malt whiskies a characteristic smoky flavour.

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