IN THE OLD DAYS ...
That's what old people usually say. Am I becoming old? A relic foreigner living in the mountains of Japan? No, NOT YET!!
Back in the day, people behaved differently. Some good behaviors existed and so did bad ones. My parents and I threw our garbage into a landfill. There were all sorts of garbage, from wood and plastics to mattresses and refrigerators. We didn't have to ask the earth if it was OK to fill up the land with our waste. So, we just threw it in.
Well, I don't do that anymore. And I haven't for more than half of my life.
As you can see in the photos, I am making a campsite and removing the trash heap behind it. It will take as long as it does. The land is useful, so let's use it!
Friends of mine, Nathan and Julian, inspired me to make a movie. These two guys have made music together for years and this year they began new careers in film making. At first, I asked them to help me make a movie in Akiu-Canada, but they pushed me to do it myself because they had other projects. And so, I began!
This film is a documentary about transformation, enlightenment and ascension (spiritual, physical, mental, emotional). Maybe we cannot consistently reach new highs on so many levels, but when we push ourselves to new challenges, our determination will inevitably lead us to growth. That is the crux of this movie. I want to document the human spirit as it faces problems and disappointment. Success is actually quite boring. It's a kind of "good job" feeling. Reaching success too easily isn't worth remembering. It's the struggles that we must go through in order to succeed. Those struggles are worth remembering. Overcoming obstacles and fighting exhaustion moves the body, spirit and mind to new heights. In that way, transformation will occur. Not only do we grow as humans, but the environment where we are also becomes a part of us and our hands, our passion becomes a part of what we touch. In other words, the world around us also transforms. You will see that Akiu-Canada is a work of art created by all the people who come here and move something.
To make this blog entry more concrete, giving you a mental picture, I can say that we are clearing an area that will make Akiu-Canada more beautiful and more useful. This area is very cool. People can see something unique and while escaping the heat and the crowds. A few years ago, may trees fell down at the entrance to the tunnel. We are clearing the entrance and preparing a place for you.
Wow! What an incredible start to 2021 and the new decade!
A pandemic, Tokyo Olympics, and so much work getting done here!!!
It has be an amazing 6 months. I'd like to thank the people like Azuma, Carpenter Steve, Nathan, Rick and Lukas for their consistency. These people were always ready to give their time and energy to me . I'm very grateful.
And in June I met a lovely lady who has decided to climb aboard the Hakkarainen Highway to love and adventure! We'll climb mountains, swim in rivers, and plant trees together!
This is what I have been asking for. A real partner. I'm happy, blessed and excited to join her life. We make a great team. Come and meet the new management!
It's almost the end of the year. It's a Monday night and I'm home alone. My kids are with dear mommy in Sendai while daddy works in Akiu. I have gotten quite used to being alone, but it's not going to last much longer. I have worked everyday for the last three years, and at the same time I call everyday a holiday. Now that's a contradiction, isn't it? I'm working, I have a job, but I am on holiday. That's so strange!
Things are not normal here in Paradise, Akiutopia. 秋保トピア。
I don't like normal. Normal is extremely boring for me. I have changed careers 4 times already and I am young enough to do it again and again if I please. I like it when things change. The only things I don't like changing are my daily rituals. I like to get up and go to bed at the same time everyday. I also like to eat my meals as usual, but my business? I want that to go up and down. I want to have the power to control my own business. So, if I don't want to work hard, then my business will suffer. Or, if I want to make more money, then I just have to put the time in to start a new project. I like being in control of that. Of course, the market is a whole other animal. And Novel Coronal Virus is an animal unlike anything we have ever seen!
This year, many people around the world were affected by travel restrictions, lockdowns and unemployment. Me too. I bet big on the Tokyo Olympics 2020, but they were postponed. I had thought that my guesthouse would have a breakout year. That didn't happen. I didn't really care though. To me, losing business to Covid 19 was a very small thing. I didn't concentrate on my losses. Instead, I focused on what I could do with all this free time! So, I began...
IN 2020... This is what we have accomplished:
All hallways have new flooring.
Tatami replaced in 6 rooms.
A new restroom (with a water toilet)
A new reception room
A new tool room
An outhouse was built!
New walls and ceiling in the onsen
Repair of many fixtures, electrical lines and water lines
The campsite began in 2020 and there are many customers every week!
4 rooms with new flooring
Painting interior and exterior walls... About 80% has fresh paint!
Repaired numerous broken walls inside and out
So, 2020 was an excellent year in Akiu. I am way ahead of my target. Maybe 5 years ahead of schedule. Now, I have time to expand Akiu-Canada. It'll grow outward, up the hills, along the river and even across the river. One day, it might even go inside the mountain. My plans are endless, just like my dreams. I just finish one thing and quickly start something new. I thank the mountains, the river, the winds, and the sunshine. I feel blessed.
Work to Learn, Learn to Work. That's one of the concepts my Education Company is founded on. I'm putting it into practice now by giving some young students a place to Learn and a place to Work. Now, beside my own kids, two other local boys are working here. I am teaching them how to work many different jobs here at Akiu-Canada. We are washing windows with only water and small towel. We are painting, cleaning and fixing things around the house. I like working with young people. I dedicate my life to teaching and helping improve who we are. I do this because I believe that once we become the best we can be, it helps the order of the universe. Globally, we make the world a better place. "Ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country." - JFK
This weekend saw the most visitors per day and per week. We broke some attendance records! That was fun! I have a camping manager now. His name is Seiya Yamadera. We are learning to build a campsite. I would like to create a sustainable system.
I don't write here very much because my energy is going somewhere else. Work.
Someone told me the other day that when we stop having sex, our energy has to be used somewhere else. My sexless marriage drove me to buy this place and commit twenty years to it. I used to love having sex with as many different people as possible during my teenage years and into my twenties. That happiness ended when I got married and we created two lovely children who are becoming quite remarkable in their own ways. During those early childhood years I started an English classroom in Sendai, Japan. It has been one of the most inspirational and energetic periods of my life so far. The creativity continued for ten years until my children needed a parent to be home after school. I decided to be the man at home, and my English school was at home anyway, so my then wife was pleased. But one day, I saw a German film on YouTube and it scared the hell out of me. Something inside my soul woke up and drove me to get closer to nature. The story goes that I became obsessed to find a place by a river, with lots of sunshine, good land and an onsen. It also had to be within 30 minutes of Sendai. After 8 months of daily action, I found what I was looking for. Heaven was waiting for me. I arrived and a huge force of energy took over. Nothing could stand in my way. Walls were smashed, ceilings collapsed, jungles disappeared and I just kept working, cleaning, picking up garbage and moving forward. That was three years ago. Someone once told me that we start fires and hopefully they'll start to burn with the help of others, and then we go and start another fire. I think that's happening here because I have received a lot of support from people. They have volunteered, given me stuff or paid for a service here. I appreciate those people because they give me the energy to continue. I want to show them something wonderful. I think if I look deep inside myself, I can create something that even I will be amazed.