Monday, March 10, 2014

Slight Gems Filling My Soul

The littlest things in life bring me joy.  I only had a teeny tiny mug/bowl for such things as soup, and cereal so today I picked this up.  The bowl isn't the subject in discussion, but the store and encounter I had with the very elderly woman still keeping shop.  

I was heading towards the hundred yen shop to pick up something similar down the road, but on my way I saw the small family owned store, with ceramics and china stacked to the ceiling, with the lights hardly on.  I wasn't even sure they were open, but the little old lady was sitting in the back all wrapped up in a cozy red plaid blanket, and the sliding glass doors weren't locked.  Her daughter came to check in once in a while, especially as her Mom could hardly lift the bowls let alone put newspaper around them and put them into a plastic bag as I paid; but she was determined and I was happy to just speak with them, and let her take as long a she needed.      

As it was a bit nippy out I said something like 'Stay warm and cozy inside today' (just small talk, but in my slightly funny Japanese), but I swear the most beautiful, heart warming, and BIGGEST smile came across her face.  THAT made my day!  

I treasure these small moments in life, where true human heart and soul are revealed, and understanding shared.  I'd rather support these family run shops and pay a few hundred yen extra than go to a chain/commercial store.  You get to speak to individuals, to share and gain insight into who they are, their stories, lives they've journeyed.  And when someone opens up to share a bit of them selves, you can't help but be affected and touched by their legacy.

So here is a bit from this side of Tokyo, where it transitions into 'shitamachi' (lower city), Suitengu Shrine area; gems of family owned shops remain, filling my soul:)  

Have a wonderful week!


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