Opera in the Park

Opera in the Park Concert

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SF Opera’s annual al fresco concert in Golden Gate Park. Many years, people enjoyed Maestro Nicola Luisotti led the world’s big singing stars in a concert of arias, duets, and ensembles accompanied by the San Francisco Opera Orchestra.

From Tuscan village to San Francisco opera house, Nicola Luisotti’s route to stardom reads like a feel-good Hollywood movie.
Maestro Nicola Luisotti served Music director & Conductor at San Francisco Opera from 2009 to 2017.

Former General director David Gockley (2006–2016) said: “I believe that it speaks of glamour, sophistication, tradition, and innovation all things that infuse our plans for the future of San Francisco Opera.”  David Gockley announced on January 2007, that bringing on Luisotti as the company’s music director was a large part of his goal to “reinvigorate the core Italian repertory that is San Francisco Opera’s birthright.”

He no longer with SF Opera and moved on.
I like to say “thank you” I miss him very much. He is the personable and energetic maestro.
Nice to know he is busy with the Teatro Real di Madrid, and the Metropolitan Opera in the 2018/19 season.

By the way, someone sent me a private email after seeing my blog about Richard Wagner’s four Operas of the Ring Cycle.
I saw only one of them it’s called The Ring of the Nibelung #4. Gotterdammerung: “The Twilight of the Gods” on July 1st. 2018.
He wrote:
You remind me of someone who would spend 10 hours in line to get standing room only tickets to watch/hear a five-hour Wagnerian opera. I have chosen to step it up a bit, and only get premium seats or I don’t go. So the $500 to get my ticket to see Siegfried this summer was a bit extravagant.
– – – (a lot of gibberish here) – – –
I’m still working so no ocean voyage to Europe… it’d be a quick first class trip and back… I need to maintain my income for as long as I can… $500k isn’t enough for me to maintain a lifestyle without it. – – – (and more gibberish) – – –
Δ¥Δ¥   Mr. whoever, thanks for your email. Actually, I didn’t appreciate it. Please understand me that I am a retiree. I’m a frugal person (not cheap). I love all the luxury in the world just like you do. How do I get a luxury without a lot of money? For example, Broadway Musical or play – I go straight to the box office of the venue on a performance day. I say ‘I need only one ticket, I’m on a tight budget.’ He’d give me a center-front orchestra seat for the bargain price.  To get that, you must be charming. And, I am. (giggle)


Blue rose – an unrealizable dream

The Blue rose – an unrealizable dream

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August – Blue Rose
I had a brief encounter with someone who is a very high profile in business and charming individual. I’d say he is “Blue Rose – an unattainable dream.” Since the blue rose itself is a rarity in nature, it symbolizes the impossible or the unattainable. So, I’m feeling a bit of “the pathos of things” right now.

Excuse my language, what the heck. Maybe there won’t be sweet kisses, so? Life goes on. I live my own life and nurse my own wounds (Am I a strong woman? Not really. . . Live in America, I must pretend to be strong.  I guess that’s a name of the game.)

Orphaned Dog
This dog is amazing. I realized he is the one true companion for me. Don’t tell that to my son. My son brought this dog to me in June due to the owner (my son’s father) passed away. Strangely, he doesn’t respond to his name ‘Fang’, so I just say ‘hey’ when I need his attention. He avoids eye contact, doesn’t lick my face.
I took him with me for our adventurers. We had a good time every time, every place. Passerby strangers loved him. Everybody tells me “He is a keeper”. He is actually a better companion than any human.  I guess…

Note: I’m looking for travel companions (travel by cruise ships, trains, cars) – Share expenses.
The time is now!

8/04/18: The UC Berkeley Summer Symphony
8/05/18: Nihonmachi Street Fair Doggie World
8/07/18: National Night Out, Pittsburg
8/08/18: Movie at Orinda Theatre
8/11/18: Salesforce Park a grand opening
8/15/18: Rose Garden Oakland
8/16/18: Charmaine’s Rooftop Bar at SF
8/18/18: Aloha Poly Fest
8/22/18: Lands End – Hike with a dog
8/22/18: Union Square Live – Latin Jazz Youth Ensemble
8/24/18: Crazy Rich Asians Movie
8/25/18: Volunteer – clean my street
8/26/18: Golden Gate Fields – Live Horse Racing
8/28/18: Opera Preview: Cavalleria Rusticana / Pagliacci

Photo Gallery – August 2018 events of everyday life

Kindness Of Neighbors

Kindness of neighbors

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July – Kindness of neighbors
Big thanks to Leo. He is my neighbor, replaced the old damaged fence. As anybody knows that high-cost of labor. Leo volunteered to do all the work for free. He learned handyman skills from YouTube videos after retirement from trading securities job. Other-side of my neighbor also voluntarily fix things for me. Across the street, neighbor keeps an eye on the safety of me and my house – often I forget to close the garage door. Maria lives several doors away, she often comes to get me for her home-cooking dinners – she knows I don’t like to cook.


A first-time grandma (not sure it’s appropriate to write this on here)?
My son Robert informed me that I’ll be a first-time grandma in January. Big surprise and least expected. Tina is a “high risk” pregnancy. Her OB/GYN says she has a 50/50 shot of carrying the baby to term. She lost her premature baby many years ago.
I really hope they have a healthy baby in January. Tina will be the best mom in the world.
Oh, I cannot wait to hold the baby in January. Too excited. . . Tina & Robert, Love you a lot.

Note: I’m looking for travel companions – Share expenses.
The time is now! I want to travel more if I don’t do it now, it’s too late.

7/01/18: SF Opera Ring Cycle #4
7/04/18: 4th of July Celebration
7/06/18: Rotunda Dance Series
7/08/18: Hamlet – Actors Ensemble of Berkeley
7/09/18: Leo my kindest neighbor
7/10/18: Free Chick-Fil-A
7/14/18: Ethnic Dance Festival – Week 1
7/15/18: ‘Ice Mother’ Movie Czech Republic
7/19/18: Rugby World Cup 7’s Welcome Ceremony
7/21/18: Chevron Family Theatre Festival
7/22/18: Ethnic Dance Festival – Week 2
7/28/18: International Tea & Fashion show
7/28/18: SF Civic Music Assoc

July  2018



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June – Condolence
Morning of June 7th, my son’s father passed away peacefully. He had pain all over his body for 3 months, then finally admitted to the emergency. Doctors discovered cancer in his lung, spinal, bones, and spread all over his body. He died within 10 days. He was amazingly good looking even on deathbed. I haven’t seen him for quite long time. I exclaimed, “Wow, you are so handsome!” He replied “Handsome Devil” yes, indeed. His mind was very sharp and alert. I gave him my forgiveness and blessing.

My son, Robert was busy, going thru Checklist details and responsibilities after father’s death.
He asked me to take care dog “Fang.” I promised him for just one month. He is a good dog.

Enjoy this moment…Life is so fleeting.
The time is now! I want to travel more if I don’t do it now, it’s too late.

6/01/18: “Stomper” Oakland A’s mascot
6/02/18: Visited my Ex-husband in the hospital
6/06/18: Shadelands Ranch Museum
6/07/18: My son’s father passed away
6/08/18: Lily Cai Chinese Dance Company
6/09/18: Gamelan Sekar Java at YBG
6/10/18: Orphaned dog arrived
6/17/18: North beach festival
6/20/18: Lightshow & Summer Solstice Concert
6/22/18: Berkeley Community Chorus & Orchestra
Mendelssohn, St. Paul Oratorio, Op. 36
6/24/18: SF Pride Parade
6/30/18: Pasados del Presidio

June  2018

Poignant old letters

Poignant old letters

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May – Poignant old letters
It has been over a month since I returned from Japan.
I found old letters from my parents. In one particular letter from my, both parents described an abundance of love for me. The letter made me cry so hard. My sister condemned me due to my lack of “filial piety” many years ago.  However, every parent loves their children unconditionally.
I only have one sibling (my brother) in Japan now, it’s a poignant reminder of the passing of time. Also, it created existential anxiety.

5/03/18: I created Cactus Pot Garden
5/06/18: SF Ballet ” Unbound A”
5/08/18: SF Botanical Garden
5/12/18: Mother’s Day
5/25/18: BART at Antioch Station
5/27/18: Carnaval San Francisco
5/30/18: Senior Prom Dance

May  2018

J-Town Cherry Blossom

J-Town Cherry Blossom

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Cherry Blossom Parade
I watched entire Northern California Cherry Blossom Grand Parade on April 22.
The grand marshal Kristi Yamaguchi with her two daughters, SF Mayor Mark Farrell, CA State Senator Scott Wiener, and District 5 Supervisor London Breed.
Hundreds of children from Rosa Parks Elementary School, highly successful Japanese Bilingual Bicultural Program (JBBP)
It was great opportunity to see/learn them and enjoy cultural festivities.

Train fare evasion
I lost my Clipper Card (all-in-one transit card for the Bay Area) because I was so distracted by watching many (8 of them) young black guys jump over the BART train fare gate (this is not a hurdles race). I am used to seeing it late night at Bay Point Station. In Japan, You will never see that type of behavior. Here, in California, some black parents themselves don’t know the morality. They have long been accustomed to behaving badly. The government must do something to break the bad cycle. It going to be a big culture change for them, and culture change is hard. (Don’t call me a racist, this is a fact)

About My Blog
My blog, only a few people see my blog. Search engines will not find my blog on trillions of websites. Still, it’s a meaningful scrapbook for me, and proof of being alive, that’s it.

I still think about my mother. She lived alone. Her life became meaningless. She actually told me that her life is so empty and no longer wish to live.
Now I am aged. I understand what she was feeling. I feel the same way quite often.
When we are no longer able to change a situation – we are challenged to change ourselves. And that’s what I am doing after retirement.
I like one of Viktor Frankl quotes “What man actually needs is not a tensionless state but rather the striving and struggling for some goal worthy of him.”

No learning without humility.
No growth without pain.
No reward without risk.
No change without loss.

Travel to Japan

Travel to Japan

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I’m so glad that I finally went to Japan. Sightseeing was fun, however, I realized my physical limitation. I walked many kilometers at a fast pace every day. My calves are still hurting.
I’m glad my brother’s entire families are thriving and doing well. It’s good to see people I have not met before – such as my niece’s kids Yuuki & Atsuki, my nephew’s wife Nana and two kids Yura & Kanata. I remember I met Auntie Kiyoko & cousin Shigeko over 40 years ago.

I wish to express my utmost appreciation and gratefulness to my brother Kanji and his wife Kazuko. I stayed at their house from March 22 to 27 and April 2 to 5. Kazuko prepared 10 kinds of side dishes for breakfast every morning. Brother Kanji helped wash dishes at home.
I forgot to say to them “May I help you?” or “How can I help?” — I am too damn lazy, shame on me.
We went out many different restaurants for dinners so I can experience different cuisine.

I just love being pampered. In Japan, people are shy, so you initiate “ask help.” Due to my bilingual, I got all the help I needed from strangers in Japan. Thanks, everyone!

What I noticed in Japan:
1) Cleanliness – Everything is spotless. It’s Japan
2) An automated external defibrillator (AED) in many places. Just in case.  Sudden Cardiac Arrest
3) Kei-cars, the minicars (the engine must be 660cc or smaller ) sold almost exclusively in Japan. They could go around and do their daily chores with this car.
4) Ultra high tech in Rail system among others. Yet, very people-centric.
5) see/hear vocabulary “reform old house” in Japan.
That sounds very strange to my ears. I jokingly thought that these houses are criminals and need to be put them in halfway house (reform house, a reform school for juveniles etc.,) LOL  
I am used to seeing/ hearing “remodeling, renovation” in the good old USA.
Reform = to adapt to modern changes in social, political, and cultural life.
Restructure = to effect a fundamental change in (as an organization or system).
Remodel = “restore to a good state of repair.” “to change the structure or form of something
Renovation = is the process of improving a broken, damaged, or outdated structure.
Refurbishment, on the other hand, implies a process of improvement by cleaning, decorating.

Also, Japanese people use many English vocabulary but they say it wrong. For example “buffet” (English pronunciation is bəˈfā where Japanese pronounce it Byuffe)

Have you ever wondered why the Japanese wear those masks? 
I had to ask my niece Megumi because she was wearing a mask all the time.
#1: She suffers from “Hay Fever.” She is allergic to cedar & cypress tree pollen. 25 million people (20% of the population) currently suffer from seasonal hay fever in Japan.
#2: Either you are sick or not wanting to get sick.
#3: Avoid Annoying People in public
#4: Too lazy for make-up.
#5: Fashion.
Click Link YouTube Video: Photos That Prove Japan Is Not Like Any Other Country

Travel to Japan  March 21 – April 5

🙂  Tokyo (Ueno, Asakusa, Shibuya, Shinjuku, Ueno)

🙂  Yokohama City (Chinatown, Marine Rouge Dinner Cruise, Sankei-en Garden, Minato Mirai)

🙂  Nagano prefecture (Jigokudani Snow Monkey Park, Zenkoji Temple, Sake tasting tour, Matsumoto Castle)