Semi Time

It’s that time of year again.  The so hot you feel like you’re living in a frying pan, so humid you feel like you’re swimming, summer days in Japan.

It’s the job of the semi (cicada) to ring in the hot summer days with its never ending whirring and chirping.  Once you hear the semi, you know it’s hot and humid outside (if you weren’t already dying from the heat).

When I first started living in Japan, I didn’t understand how anyone could concentrate with the ceasless sound of semi in the air.  At times the noise is so loud, you can’t even hear yourself think.  When you’re right next to one chirping on full blast, the high notes of the semi’s call leave your ears ringing.  Really, it’s that loud.

Now that I’ve been living in Japan for two years, I welcome the hum of the semi as a signal to feel free to swim in the sea, eat the many festival foods that abound, and enjoy the many fireworks displays that Japan is so famous for.  Hearing those first calls of “cheeeee, cheee cheee” gives me a sense of excitement for the coming of summer.  Sure, the sound of semi also means it’s going to become hotter than hell, but the heat also brings (in my opinion) the best season in Japan.

So welcome back, semi, I missed you.  Here’s to another great summer.

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