Thursdays, 10.00 – 10.54 p.m. from 11 October 2012
34-year-old Tanaka Chiharu is a contract staff at a travel agency, has not had a boyfriend in 5 years and is almost 35. Although she is good-natured to a fault and a people person, her relationships have not lasted long because she cannot affect cuteness. Not that she does not want to get married. She wants to, and thinks that she should, but for some reason, she just cannot seem to. With friends of the same age getting married one after another and seeing the birth of children, she starts to feel anxious about remaining single as she grows old. Haruko, a talented, successful landscape gardening planner who works at Natural Gardener, has designed parks and the gardens of large homes. 44 years old and single, Haruko had a long-standing affair with her married boss Higuchi Toru. Maybe this is why she has come to think that work is life’s best partner and marriage is not necessary after passing 40. She has come to terms with her worries and also grown used to being alone, but on the few occasions that she goes to see her mother and grandmother, their laments sink in … … On the other hand, there is 32-year-old Kudo Junpei, who works part-time at the flower shop, Maison Floral. He does not have the confidence that he can make a woman happy and has given up on marriage. A graduate from an art university, he dreams of becoming an artist but has been out of luck. Although he has regrets, he intends to give up pursuing painting. Kawano Mizuki, Junpei’s junior at university and an artist about to hold her first solo exhibition, likes him and wants him to do a painting again. One day, Chiharu’s ex-boyfriend Kojima Keisuke comes to the travel agency with his young fiancee to consult on a honeymoon trip. Then, Chiharu’s younger sister, Chinatsu, brings her fiance, Tachibana Yoichiro, home and tells their parents that she intends to live in this home with Yoichiro once Chiharu gets married and moves out. Realising that Chiharu has overheard this conversation, her mother asks what she thinks about marriage. However, Chiharu is at a loss for an answer and leaves with the words, “I’m going out for a while.” She ends up drinking canned beer at her favourite park with a water fountain. Then Haruko comes by. This park was designed by her. A completely drunk Chiharu attempts to fly a paper aeroplane made from a leaflet but her bracelet ends up falling into the water as well. Haruko gets into the water with her shoes on to prevent the paper aeroplane from obstructing the drain. Seeing this, Chiharu has no choice but to follow suit. At that moment, water spouts from the fountain and the two women get soaked. To top it off, patrolling police officers discover them and they end up having to explain themselves at the police post. Chiharu drops in at Haruko’s place, borrows a change of clothes and even gets a lift to her office. Arriving at Natural Garden, Haruko is asked by Higuchi to see a poorly performing shop run by a subsidiary. That shop is Maison Floral. Haruko promptly visits and meets Junpei and Sakura Mai. According to Junpei, a new shop manager will be coming next week. On the other hand, Chiharu meets Kubo Yuji, a member of one of the clubs from university days, again. Yuji heard about Chiharu from Keisuke and has come to consult her on a company trip. Chiharu and Yuji had in fact once made a promise that they would marry if both were still single at 35 …
Kanno Miho as Tanaka Chiharu
A contract staff at a travel agency. She has not had a boyfriend in 5 years and is almost 35. Although she is good-natured that she cannot say no and a sociable person, her relationships have not lasted long because she cannot affect cuteness. This does not mean that she does not want to get married. She wants to do so someday, and thinks that it will be good for her. But she is not inclined to search for a marriage partner. She is even good at cooking so why is she not able to marry? It is a mystery to her family members too. With friends of the same age getting married one after another and experiencing childbirth, she starts to feel anxious about remaining single as she grows old.
Amami Yuki as Kirishima Haruko
A talented, successful landscape gardening planner who has designed parks and the gardens of large homes. She is candid and very helpful. As she gets older, she has come to terms with her worries and also grown used to being alone. Because she had a long-standing affair with her married boss, she has overcome her doubts on marriage and childbirth and is philosophical about love. She has come to terms with her worries and also grown used to being alone. Now that she has reached her 40s she thinks that she chose not to marry but is in the end married to her job. But on the few occasions that she goes to see her mother and grandmother, their laments sink in … …
Tamaki Hiroshi as Kudo Junpei
A kind-hearted man with a sensitive nature. He thinks of other people more than he does of himself, is a late bloomer in love and makes little headway. A graduate from an art college, he dreams of drawing oil paintings but that has not gone well. He works at the flower shop, Maison Floral, as a part-time employee. Although he is making the best of his life, he does not have the confidence to marry and support someone else and a family. He believes it is absolutely impossible for him financially and emotionally, the way he is now.
Koichi Mantaro as Professor Tanigawa Shuji
A professor at Meifu University. He has been researching the romance of women and teaches the class on contemporary sociology which Sakura Mai takes.
Ito Ayumi as Kawano Mizuki
A graduate of the same art college as Kudo Junpei and his junior at the same oil painting school. She adores the paintings that he drew and has been in love with his since she was a student. A distinctive woman with a will of her own.
Fukuda Ayano as Suzumura Mariko
A contract staff at a travel agency. Tanaka Chiharu’s junior. She considers Chiharu as her elder sister. She has a strong desire to get married and always keeps a lookout for matchmaking party companions from customers in order to find the man of her destiny. She has matchmaking parties twice a week.
Ishibashi Ryo as Higuchi Toru
The manager of the design department at the publicly listed Natural Gardener. He and Kirishima Haruko once had an affair. He has a wife and daughter.
Ichige Yoshie as Tanaka Noriko
The mother of Tanaka Chiharu. A full-time housewife. She is truly worried about Chiharu’s marriage and pokes her nose in everything. She has keen instincts and would immediately notice if there is something wrong with her daughters.
Kaji Meiko as Kirishima Yoko
The mother of Kirishima Haruko. A kind, gentle woman who cares for her daughter. She has been taking care of her husband’s mother. Her husband passed away when Haruko was very young.
Nakamura Yuri as Tanaka Chinatsu
Tanaka Chiharu’s younger sister. A naive person who speaks briskly. Unlike Chiharu, she is aggressive in love. She is always pestering her to buy things that she wants. She was introduced to her fiance Tachibana Yoichiro by an acquaintance when she was 26. Because she was pampered when growing up, she occasionally causes trouble and puts the family in a fix.