Now seated comfortably on the bus toward Narita Airport, I thought about that first night in April when I arrived not knowing what to expect but completely open to new adventures. As I waited on that chilly night for transportation to take me to Tokyo, I saw a porter bow deeply at a departing bus. I was struck by the grace of the salutation, the expression, and the ultimate acknowledgement of respect. Throughout my stay, I was bowed to, my students bowed to each other, and I too began to bow: apologetically for not knowing the language well enough to communicate freely, but most of all as way to express my appreciation and gratitude.
One late afternoon in June I was walking toward the Gotanda Station and passed the same spot on the bridge that is in the image of the first posting of this dairy: trees sprinkling their fading blossoms along the river one rainy day back in April. The sun was now setting on this very same scene, casting a dreamy golden light on the buildings and water. The trees were now a fresh green. I stopped for a moment to take a picture. Later when I compared the images, I was struck by the differences—spring to summer—which not only indicated the passing of time, but renewal and transformation.
Thank you for your reminiscenses of your time in Japan. It almost felt like I was there. How fortunate or you to have such an eyeopening and thrilling adventure. And thank you for sharing it with us.
Thanks for taking the time to read my stories Susan. My experience in Tokyo was amazingly transformative on many levels—I’m all the better for it. Now the focus turns to yoga and life in LA!