When life hands you bitterness, all you can do is add sugar.

The sort of thing that really tries one’s patience

I’m no stranger to forced waiting. I’ve been stuck in queues, kept waiting by planes, and even trapped in a lift halfway between floors. (Quite a nasty experience, that.) Ah, but being asked to wait a year before I can lay my hands on the home video release of Croisée in a Foreign Labyrinth . . .

Given the choice, I’d probably go for the broken lift.

This test of patience is made all the more severe by the fact that I’ve already had a taste of this fine new series. What I’ve seen amounts to very little — enough to whet the appetite, not nearly enough to satisfy — but I am quite convinced that Croisée is precisely the sort of thing my battered mind presently requires: a weekly dose of iyashikei goodness, delivered piping hot and with the brightest of smiles. Each episode left me with a distinct feeling of soothing tranquillity that I can remember deriving heretofore only from the Aria series, so much so that I wasn’t the least bit surprised to hear of Satō Junichi‘s involvement in this project.

Truth be told, I’d much rather be taken on yet another relaxing season’s worth of gondola rides accompanied by my favourite undines. But where healing a soul scarred by unremitting travail is concerned, the adventures of a little Japanese girl in nineteenth-century Paris can’t be far behind in medicinal value.

And in the end, even the long wait may not be entirely devoid of virtue.

If nothing else, it gives me something to look forward to.