Oita is such a beautiful place. I'm fortunate to live on a high hill and have vacation-worthy views from my apartment. As I drive to and from my apartment, I get glimpses of fantastic views of mountains and the ocean. The scene changes as the sun and the moon move on a wheel round and round, intensifying the illusion that this day is separate from the last. As with our perception of the days, I think people see what they choose to see, to a degree. Sure, Oita is industrial. There is rust, and towers puffing smoke and fumes. But it's picturesque, too.
I am in love with the roving clouds. Of all the aspects of the weather in Oita, I think the clouds affect my state the most. I love most when they are thick and white and sitting in the mountains on a clear day. Without them, the mountains blend into each other. With them, I can see more contrast and get a better sense of how high the mountains stretch into the sky. I don't know why, but when the clouds get dark, I feel so calm. When I look out at a slate gray sky, it's like the color pulls me into it and out of myself, and I can relax. I love the views and weather of Oita. I loved Los Angeles, California, but I always did miss weather of any kind aside from "sunny."
When I look out from Oita toward Beppu City I get a sense of a prehistoric time. I think it's something in the shape of the mountains and the species of trees that seems anachronistic. It's fascinating: I see and feel the differences as I travel from the east of the USA to the west. I noticed more differences when I traveled to Hawaii, and now that I am in Japan, I can see this transition happen over a vast expanse in my memory. As I move, the greenery changes a little and the animals change a little, but everything is connected. I think the oceans create an illusion of separation in the land like light creates an illusion of separation in the days, but really, it's all one.
It's easy, in the city, to get distracted by the hubbub of life and to never look past the buildings. I try to remember to look around and go to places where I can see beyond man-made things, and enjoy the beauty of Oita, while I can.