When someone mentions a grain harvest in Japan, most people natually think of rice. So, when a few acres of land just around the corner from us started growing what I eventually recognized as wheat I was quite surprised. Japan does grow wheat of course, but only a tenth as much as the State of Kansas and at over ten times the price.
In the USA, one thinks of "amber waves of grain" stretching from horizon to horizon as in the song "America the Beautiful". Here, in that part of Kashima City the locals call Naka, things are quite a bit scaled down. The wheat field of Naka is only a few acres in size. Otherwise things are done pretty much the same way, just on a smaller scale. The other day while on one of Momo's walks I noticed that a combine was harvesting the wheat. Like the wheat field, the combine was a diminutive one. It had been brought in on a flatbed truck. I have no idea how much grain they got from this little field, but it was interesting to watch it being harvested.
Speaking of big farms vs small farms, I am reminded of the story of the Texas rancher who visited Maui and saw some cattle up in the small farm community of Kula on the slopes of Mt. Haleakala (house of the sun).
A paniolo (Hawaiian cowboy) was riding his horse along the fence and the Texan pulled up in his rental car and asked, "is this your cattle ranch?".
Moke (mow-keh) answered, "Aloha, cousin. Yeah, dis my ranch".
Texan: I happen ta own a little ol' cattle ranch down in Texas. If you don't mind me askin', how big is your ranch?
Moke: See dat Jacaranda tree owah dere - wid the blue flowers? From dere up to da barn, den way ovah to dat yella house and back down to da road. Dats my ranch.
The Texan smiled and said, "Why son, on my ranch back in Texas I can get up at dawn, drive my car all day long until the sun goes down and still not reach the other side of the ranch."
Moke laughed and replied, "Yeah? I had one car li' dat."