| It was my birthday last week.
To my happy surprise, so many mails, cards arrived. It was absolutely the biggest number of `Happy Birthday Cards’ I have ever had in my life.
That may be caused by Facebook, which let many people have known the date.
Being celebrated by so many friends, I found there was one typical Japanese feelings in my heart, which may be hard to be understood by western people.
In my mind, there were two different feelings.
One was that my desire to let many people acknowledge, and celebrate my birthday, since the day was special to me.
Another was that my desire to conceal the fact that the day was my birthday.
Since I know how small I am in this world. How little I have participated my friends’lives. How little I have helped them.
Most Japanese must have these kinds of self-contradictions.
My parents have never told other people, and even to their sons, the dates of their birthdays. And I have known many Japanese who are just like my parents.
Most of my life, I have spent my birthdays in many ski resorts, and very few people knew the date and very few people celebrated it. Plus I did not let anyone know of the date.
So the last week was a big exception.
Most of Japanese feel shy about telling their birthdays. Sometimes we even feel somewhat shameful to tell others our birthdays.
In our philosophy, we may have a very pessimistic point of view of our lives.
Japanese may have a twisted and complex mind in a way.
At the same time as I feel shy and somewhat shameful, I also like to thank many of my friends who celebrated my birthday.
Thank you very much my friends.