The Government Promotes Minsyuku Services

大田区の多摩川と東急東横線

The sentences below are my thoughts and a summary of an article from an English newspaper named “The Japan Times.”


Do you know about a type of guest house which is popular nowadays? We call a guest house ‘minsyuku’ in Japan. A minsyuku service is that of home sharing on a short-term basis, and it is loved by short-term travelers around the world.

The national government in Japan hopes that by expanding it, hotel shortages in Tokyo will be alleviated. The minsyuku service is expected to take the role of conventional business hotels for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. In 2016, Otaku Ward promoted it based on the Airbnb model. Airbnb is a very popular website or application providing short stays for visitors.

What do you think about the minsyuku service? Have you used it? I have never used it, but I’d like to use it when I go on a trip domestic and international as well. In my opinion, the best thing about it is that its hotel charges are cheap, so it is very convenient for persons who have little money like me. However, if I were in Otaku Ward, I would worry about worsening security resulted from many people from other countries.


Hanako:
Hey, Ken. Did you read this article? The title is “The Government Promotes Minsyuku Services.” Reading it, I felt like going on a trip. I will have been with you for one year in a few days! Let’s travel abroad to celebrate our first anniversary.

Taro:
Well… I don’t have enough money to travel, you know. So please give up on it.

Hanako:
No problem. If we stay at a guest house, we can keep expenses low. And according to the news yesterday, the Japanese yen is stronger compared to U.S. dollars, so we can benefit if we go to America.

Taro:
Let me read that article. Ummm… certainly, the hotel charges of guest houses are very reasonable, but I worry about their security. You know, fatal shootings have happened in America. Also in February of this year, a mass shooting happened at a school, killing four teachers and twenty children before the culprit committed suicide. In this year, no fewer than 18 shooting incidents have happened!

Hanako:
That’s terrible. Well, why don’t we change where we go? I wanna go to Canada. Canada bears a close resemblance to America, and it looks much safer than America. Canada has strict gun control, so it should be safer.

David:
Hi, Taro and Hanako. What are you talking about?

Taro & Hanako:
Hello, David.

David:
I heard you talking about Canada. I’m from Canada, you know. If you wanna know about it, please do not hesitate to ask me.

Hanako:
We wanna go abroad, but we can’t decide where to go. Just now, Canada was suggested.

David:
Great. Canada is a good place, so you should go there at least once.

Taro:
What do you recommend for sightseeing in Canada?

David:
You must go to Banff National Park. It is a very beautiful national park which has great scenery.

Hanako:
That sounds great. Oh, you know what? I saw a tall tower in Canada on the television. What’s the name, again?

David:
Maybe the name is the CN tower.

Taro:
Is it taller than Tokyo Tower? I lived in a place close to Tokyo Tower and a few days ago I went to see Tokyo Skytree. So I’m tired of towers.What is the CN Tower like? Now, I’ll look up pictures of it on the Internet to see how it looks. Oh… I don’t feel like going to see it because it is similar to Tokyo Tower. The only difference between the two is color.

Hanako:
You’re always complaining!

David:
Hahaha. How about Yellowknife? You can see dreamy, beautiful aurora there!

Taro:
What is it like? I don’t wanna use a YELLOW KNIFE because it doesn’t sound cool. That’s lame! Knives should be silver, shouldn’t they?

Hanako:
You’re such a comedian!

A Different Way

夕方のオレンジと信号

Do you know how to change your boring life? If you want to do so, all you have to do is take a different way home. If you do so, you can enjoy different views than usual. You will find you know next to nothing about the place you live in. The same is true of your life. As the saying goes, a small change makes a big change. There are many paths in life, so if you hope to change your life, you should change the direction in which you are traveling. Change your direction, and you will find you know next to nothing about the world you live in. Moreover, you can change your destiny, for if you walk along a different way, you will encounter some things that help you live the life you want.

Magic Spells

Do you believe in magic spells? Some say it is nothing but fiction, but I believe in them. When I was a child, I liked running around outside. I would often play tag with my friends in a park. One day, as was usual with me, I was playing outside. Then, I fell and hurt my knee. I felt so much pain that I cried and said to my mother, “It hurts. It hurts.” She said to me gently, “No, you don’t feel pain. You are a fine boy, and you will be a fine adult.” Strangely, I came to feel relaxed, and a few minutes later, my pain was gone. I think it was a magic spell. In the world, there are many magic spells here and there. What your mother, father, friends, and partner say are all magic spells. Of course, you can cast a spell on someone. If you want to be loved, you should cast good spells on people around you. The nice words you say are magic spells that make you able to be loved.

My Summer Vacation

夏休みの公園のブランコ

One summer morning, Takeru, 33 years old, was surprised to see that he had become the kid that he used to be. He didn’t understand the situation, but he was happy because he had wanted to run away from his work. He looked at a wall calendar, and he found it was August 31st, 1990 that day. He seemed to have gone back to about 20 years ago. He went downstairs and said good morning to his mother cooking breakfast. She said to him, “Hey! Get ready to the exercise to the radio music at the park.” He replied happily, “Got it! Thank you, Mom.” She looked him in the eyes wonderingly because Takeru as a child wasn’t so obedient to his parents.

He put on his favorite straw hat and put his blue backpack on his shoulders, and then he flew out of his house cheerfully, saying, “I’m off!” He had no sooner gone out of the house than he found the sky vastly enormous. “It seems that I forgot the sky is so big because I was busy working at my office,” he thought. Listening to the buzz of cicadas, he ran to the park excitedly along a tree-lined street he used to use to go to school.

Getting to the park, he thought it looked pretty spacious since he was now a kid who was much shorter in stature than he was as an adult. He looked up at playground equipment―for example, a swing, slide, and jungle-gym―all of which was still taller and bigger than him. He looked back on his childhood, and he remembered vividly that he used to climb on the jungle-gym to be at the top of it to take a long look at the sky. He climbed to the top of it as he used to do, and he languidly took in a view of the park.

After a while, his three male friends―Tanaka, Miyawaki and Matuoka―came to the park. Tanaka always wore glasses that looked cheap, and he always seemed timid in person. Miyawaki had big muscles and was self-centered enough to think of him as the center of the world. Matuoka was so mischievous that he often caused trouble for the adults around him, such as his parents or teachers. Looking down at them from the top of the jungle-gym, Takeru waved at them and say hello.

Tanaka said to Takeru, “It’s about time to start exercising to the radio music. You may want to get down. If you are late for it, our teacher will get angry and blame you for being late.” After the exercise, talking with each other, the four of them walked to a penny candy store. It appeared they were getting on very well. It was about 4:00 p.m. The sunset behind them was gleaming and their laughter resounded in their town. Takeru enjoyed talking with them so much that he almost forgot the fact he had gone back to the past.

Their conversation moved on to the subject of their dreams. The most narcissistic among the four, Miyawaki, said, “Just so you know, I’m gonna become an Olympic athlete in Judo. The other day, I beat Kodama up, hahaha.” The class clown, Matuoka, said, “I’m afraid to say life is not so easy, Miyawaki. I hear you do nothing but play video games nowadays. Right now, children who are the same age as you and are keen to become an Olympic athlete are practicing very hard to be able to play sports well, heading straight toward their dreams.”

Matuoka went on to say, “But never give up. You can become only an Olympic athlete in STUPIDITY. You got a zero on the last math test, you know. It is more difficult to get a zero than to get a perfect score, I think. Any idiot can get at least one mark, but you can’t. I wanna give you a gold medal! Certainly, you may be stupid, but, in a sense, you are a genius at being an idiot!” “You’re going too far! But… you’re right!” Miyawaki said, and then all of them but Takeru burst into laughter. Takeru alone knew their futures, so he couldn’t laugh at his joke about their dreams.

Unintentionally, Takeru remembered their very sad futures. When Miyawaki was 17 years old, he broke his neck in an accident and was killed instantly while he was practicing Judo. When Matuoka was 22 years old, he was arrested because he committed a murder and robbery due to his debts. What did Tanaka do in the future? Takeru said to Tanaka, “Oh, wait… I remember now. You killed me.” Sliding his glasses up his nose, Tanaka was stupefied and said, “What are you saying? Are you out of your mind?”

Takeru didn’t go back to the past, but he just saw hallucinations because he was stabbed with a knife by Tanaka. Several minutes before he was dead, Takeru wanted to run away from severely tragic real world to the happy memories of his childhood. Children are lucky fellows because they don’t know the cruel realities which adults know.