Right at the start of part 2, when 小夜 is lighting up her bamboo torch, she says there’s holes where the 節 is. My dictionary gives me two possible readings for it’s with related, but slightly different meanings. For the reading ふし it gives me ‘knot (in wood), node in a bamboo stem’, and for よ ‘space between two nodes (on bamboo, etc.)’.
It says the second reading/usage is an archaism, but I feel like that doesn’t necessarily mean anything here.
It doesn’t matter all that much, since I get sort of how it looks like. Has anyone seen something like this, and/or know whether the hole(s) is more likely to be in a node or in between nodes? I don’t really know too much about bamboo to know whether one place is maybe easier to create holes in than the other.
Maybe halfway through part 2 小夜 tells 小春丸 about how busy it gets during 採れ秋. It’s not too difficult to get to harvest season from there, but I like this word. Im wondering it it’s a common expression. Googling it I found a few agricultural blogs, but that’s about it.
Towards the end of part 2 I got to learn about a new grammar point: （小夜）は（小夜）で which I found a relatively not super useful article on here. I sort of get it but don’t really get the nuance or how exactly it differs from merely saying 小夜は or 小夜も in this case.
Here begins part 3!
Right at the start there’s いっぺん, and I hate when it’s just kana for a multi possibility word. ‘Once’（一遍）makes a lot of sense in context. But so would ‘a little’ （一片）- unless this one maybe is only for physical things?
Shortly before the break at the end, we have なかりけり. If anyone else was wondering about this and hasn’t looked it up yet, someone was kind enough to ask in hinative.
I copied the answer in case anyone didn't feel like clicking links
I’ve only read part 2 so far so I can only comment on that
Well, ... comments I guess
The reading being an archaism would definitely mark it as the more probable one in my eyes The author is really putting a lot of effort into the old language!
For the rope, I think that she used that rope only to transfer the fire (from inside the house?) to the small stick. Then I imagined that she put the small burning stick into the larger one so that it would be inside that hollow section of the larger bamboo, so it gets protection.
I think they drilled a hole into the “knot” thing of the bamboo (which blocks up the inside as well). You can see it here:
(unfortunately this is Taiwanese Chinese and the word does not seem exist in Japanese, but it seems to be a popular thing in Taiwan given the number of websites that sell these)
Anyways, I think they drilled a hole into what makes the bottom of that cup, and then she could stick the smaller burning stick into that hole so that it would not touch the larger stick but still be protected inside the larger bamboo. The outer one was cut diagonally so I think she could plug the small one in without getting her fingers burned. I hope.
For the grammar point, I found this article. I was too busy reading so I did not look up the ton of unkown (to me) words in that article, but it feels like it puts a stronger focus than just は? Like “when it comes to ~”, “when ~ is concerned” or something like that.
Ooh, I didn’t know all that about bamboo, I suppose that’s really where I should have started looking for answers. So the nodes each have a bottom, so to speak; it makes sense that that’s where the hole would be cut, then! And also make getting the smaller bamboo in there easier than what I was imagining.
The rest pans out with how I understood the construction as well, which is reassuring. Thanks!
Only thing left to wonder: does ‘space between two nodes’ include cases like here where it’s just the space between a node and where another would have been?
Ooh, this helps a lot! So it is both a comparison to something else, as well as emphasizing a special characteristic inherent to the thing named itself, if I got that right. I think that was the missing piece!
This is really sad, it only being week 2, but I might need to put this book down for now and come back to it later. The reading pace is fine, but I’ve been having difficulty scrounging up the time to actually read; things have just been too busy on my end recently. :\ I’m definitely making it a goal to read all the way through, though; I’ve wanted to read a fantasy book in Japanese for a while now. Good luck to all those continuing on, and you’ll see my silly questions at some point in the future. o7
I also think the connecting parts are for stability. And it’s hollow to save material and weight, and thus it’s able to grow tall while still being very thin. (Imagine they were made from solid wood and grew to a height like in 嵐山 - I guess they would topple over on any occasion.) Trees are solid but they need to be much wider around the base to maintain stability when they grow that tall.
It’s a common strategy in nature to have a hollow tube to get high stability with little weight - see straw, for example, or your thigh bone.
When I searched for the photos I learned that they were used as scarecrows back in the day to protect the valuable fishes in the ponds from fish-catching birds.
What sentence is that in? (Tries to pretend she has any memory of seeing that word)
Bamboo is really amazing stuff (as long as it’s not growing in your garden as it’s a total weed and hard to get rid of, apparently). When I visited Hong Kong I saw it used as scaffolding on high rise buildings.
I was also confused by the 〇は〇で thing, and I found it really hard to search for. Reading the articles posted here definitely helped me understand the general meaning, but I’m not sure about the nuance between this and other grammar points. The Goo page even says it’s the same as the contrastive は, and some other meanings of は.
I guess importantly, it can also be something characteristic to the person’s situation, not only about the person themselves, which would be the case here. I still don’t see how it’s different from just using は though. Does that nuance not exist at all with は?
Surprisingly a lot compared to 獣の奏者! Thankfully it hasn’t been that hard to understand though. The one I find strangest is actually seeing みな instead of みんな.
I still have to read part 3 later today, but it shouldn’t take long.
I do wish there was more kanji. I did a slight double take on なかになにかを隠している.
Question at 9%
What exactly does the second sentence mean? I see にしておく is a phrase, but the English definition on jisho isn’t helping and I don’t see it in a monolingual dictionary. Also, おしい has too many definitions.
Yeah, it definitely seems to be aimed at much younger children than Kemono. They did not even use the repeater, did you notice? That annoyed me many times in another book aimed at young children (but I could not find out what the suggested age would be… maybe 3rd-4th grade elementary school?)