End of summer 2017 message

Hello Hugo

Another summer ends.  Your 6th in Japan in a row.  It’ll soon start cooling down again so no more sweltering walks to the station/school until 2018.

Here is a short UK update for you.

Today marks the 20th anniversary of the death of Diana Princess of Wales; it made news around the world at the time and there has been a lot in the media over it this summer.  I clearly remember when I found out; I was back home in Everton for the summer after the end of my first year at university.  My mum told me in the kitchen when I went down to make coffee.

As I posted yesterday, our Prime Minister is currently on a trade mission to Japan.  My repeated requests to the Foreign Office in the UK to lobby the Japanese government much harder and more publicly on the issue of parental child abduction have not to date been heeded and I fear that such issues will not be on Mrs May’s delegation’s visit.  As such I yesterday put in a freedom of information request to find out why this continues to be the case and when this will change.  I will update the blog in the coming weeks as soon as I receive a response.

I spent a couple of days with Dad up in Edinburgh, Scotland, over the late August national holiday. It is a fantastically beautiful city also with much on offer around it in the surrounding, mountainous countryside.  We concentrated mainly on the city centre but did manage to get the bus out to the Royal Yacht Britannia now moored in Leith, a coastal suburb of Edinburgh.

Dad celebrates his 89th birthday next month and everyone is meeting up, as we did last year, at the Boathouse down in Hythe to mark the occasion.  Plans are also being tentatively developed for his 90th birthday in 2018.

Less positively, both my aunt Diana and your Great Grandma have recently been diagnosed with cancers.  Diana is responding very well to treatment as it was caught early – she is expected to make a full recovery – but Grandma is still waiting for a full medical assessment.

Your UK cousin, Olly, is doing well.  He celebrated his first birthday in April and my sister returned to work at about the same time.

I have mailed you the items below in two tranches, one today and one on 24 August.  These include a genuine Edinburgh/Cashmere scarf – I tried it on before sending it to you and it is very soft and fluffy and will, I trust, help keep you warm this winter.

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Happy Easter 2017

Maundy Thursday 

Hello Hugo

This is just a short note to wish you a very happy Easter in Japan; I sent you some items (below) on Tuesday 4 April so I hope that you have them by now.  These included a commemorative coin marking the Queen’s Sapphire Jubilee, about which I posted here earlier in the year.

Easter 2017 2

Easter 2017 1

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Your Easter card and presents 

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Mailing receipt 

Happy Christmas

Happy Christmas, Hugo.

This Christmas marks your 6th in Japan.  I don’t suppose that anyone will take you to a church on Christmas Day  but you should, one day when you are old enough, visit Hiroshima’s best kept secret, the Noboricho Cathedral in Naka-ku.  Known as the Memorial Cathedral for World Peace it is built on the site of a parish church that was destroyed by the the 1945 bomb.  The then priest of the parish, also named Hugo (Lassalle), a German citizen who later became a Japanese (taking the name Enomiya Mabiki), survived the bombing and set about raising funds to build the modernist cathedral that stands on the site today.

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The Cathedral 

I hope that you have an enjoyable Christmas Day in Japan.  You remain, as always, in my thoughts and prayers.  Please see below for the presents that I sent to you on 7 December.

Happy 8th birthday

It is your 8th birthday today.  Your 6th in Japan.  I hope that you have a very good day, and one filled with blessings, in all that you do.  Another year and, amazingly, you will be half way to becoming an adult.

It has been reported that it is going to very very cold in England this week, even by November standards, and a lot colder than where you are.

See below for some items that I mailed to you earlier this month.  I was told by the Post Office clerk who processed the package that it should have reached you mid-to-late last week so I trust that it got there on time.

Happy birthday!

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Above:  your birthday card and presents as mailed to you

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Above:  Post Office shipping receipt, 18 November 2016