Living in Japan for a few months was quite the eye opener for a simple Mid-Western wood worker, such as myself. I went with a hungry mind and excited spirit at the prospects of learning about a different culture. My real motivation to commit three months to a land half way around the world was curiosity about the Bonsai.
I fell in love with the graceful and delicate lines the Japanese incorporated into the art of growing these miniature trees. I could study at home, but what I really wanted, was to immerse myself into the mindset that created such beauty. I landed at Narita International Airport on a dreary day and tired from the trip.
I wanted to get to my Ryokan and just stretch out for a while before heading into the bustle of the city. When my taxi turned down the narrow street leading to my hotel, I noticed a tow truck hauling a rather expensive car out of the lane. I realized that life goes on no matter if it’s Stuebenville, Ohio or Tokyo, Japan. It may have been unkind to find comfort in someone’s else’s “bad day”, but somehow witnessing this ordinary event set me at ease.