Thursday, 2 September 2010

The Shimmer of Heat (Translation of Post on 31st Aug)

Have you ever seen the shimmer of heat ?

It is a typical summer scenery in Japan.

The shimmer of heat is often called " hot-road mirage".

It is an inferior mirage which can be seen very commonly on roadways.
This hot-road mirage is usually most noticeable on hot sunny days.

"Fake water" on the road is the most common image of an inferior mirage.
It is totally transparent, but landscape beyond a mirage shimmers - gives you a "mysterious" feeling, I think.

But here in Thailand, we hardly see the shimmer of heat in spite of the ever-lasting summer climate.
I wondered why, and looked up Wikipedia.

It explains, "Warm air is less dense than cool air, and the variation between the hot air at the surface of the road and the denser cool air above it creates a gradient in the refractive index of the air.

Light from the sky at a shallow angle to the road is refracted by the index gradient, making it appear as if the sky is reflected by the road's surface.

The mind interprets this as a pool of water on the road, since water also reflects the sky."

I see!

Because it is always hot day and night in here, cool air never exists first start, and there is not any chance that cool air meets hot air, maybe...

Condition explained above is a typical hot summer day in Japan.
In my hometown (Yamanashi Prefecture), the air is cool in the morning and evening even during summer time.

"The Shimmer of Heat" ("Kagerou" in Japanese), one of Fujifabric's songs, is a music that Mr. Masahiko Shimura composed remembering his younger days in summer.

"Those buildings on the street" seems to be the ones of Fujiyoshida City in Yamanashi Prefecture where he was brought up.
You can still feel Showa Era (1926 - 1989) in this city as these pretty buildings are one of the main factors which make the atmosphere of old days.

(click on here to see a  View of Fujiyoshida City)

Holding a baseball bat in one hand, rushing out to buy some sweets with some pocket money in a pocket...
This is a typical view of Japanese young boys.

Mr. Shimura was a member of a local boys' baseball team, in fact, when he was in Primary and Secondary School, and he played an important role in his team as a right fielder with uniform number 8.

In the middle of the song, it suddenly starts raining, and this is also very typical of Japanese summer.

It is sometimes called "yuudachi" as it often rains in the evening.
In summer, it does not drizzle.
The sky suddenly gets darer and darker, and starts raining very hard with big drops of rain and the rumbling of thunder.
It is probably similar to showers in tropical countries.

After a while, it stops raining, and the soft sunlight, which is  no comparison to the one before the showers, starts falling across the town.
Thanks to the rain, the air is so clean and fresh, and the scent of grass gets stronger.

Heat in the daytime settles down now.
Trees in mountains, grass and flowers, crops in a farm, and of course, humans, are all settled and feeling relieved at the end of the hot summer day.

Let's take a look at a Fujifabric's great song now - "The Shimmer Of Heat"

To see lyrics translated into English, click "Fujifabric 1st Album" in Pages on the right side of this blog

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