We roll back into Shisoshi to find it finally out of the grip of a freakishly Canadian spring (chilly/rainy) and well into its baby-green mountainside phase. We can leave the windows open. We can spread the nutella. Everything is different.
We return in the triumph of mid-spring, and the knowledge that Jermaine is dead, after 3 months, one week, and three days in this world.
I haven't said much about him in a while. The persistence of that remarkable burn has continued in the background. At times it has continued to get in my way. I didn't let him stop me from visiting hot springs in Hakone or Kinosaki. He made me want to get a bike rather than trusting my old shoes to take me jogging to escape the noise in my head. In Okinawa, I went snorkeling.. and had to wear just one flipper (along with my prescription mask since I forgot contacts.. win). I bought two new pairs of Jermaine-friendly shoes in Tokyo which vastly improved the quality of my life. The first pair of shoes were pretty terrible. They wore out quickly and painfully.
Exhibit A. Check out those plastic ridges. Those were only digging into the skin of my foot for like a month. I am lame for not buying shoes earlier.
My Tokyo shoes are still in pretty good condition. And they are cuter. And they were the same price. Thank you Harajuku shopping district, boo, Jusco, for your lack of selection.
On Saturday, May 1st (how wild, how gay, the lusty month of May..?) I wore my real shoes and spent the entire afternoon walking through the streets of Hong Kong. After that, it hurt too much to wear my old silver 3-euro (actually free because I stole them from Ashers) slippers, so I relented.
On the night of Monday, May 3rd, I was in the shower in the second best hotel of the trip. The washcloth caught on the edge of Jermaine and I winced. But when I got out, the scab was gone, and there was no wound underneath, only pink scarred skin. And every ability to go out in real shoes forevermore, amen.
I like that Jermaine went for good as the last vestiges of winter did the same. I find that quite fitting.