Thank you for supporting Nippon Club of the Triangle.
I am glad to report that the Club added another successful year to its long history.
Year 2005 started with New Yearfs Mochi Making Festival at North Carolina Japan Center, with about 100 attendees.
In early fall, the Club held its Annual Meeting / Picnic, which was attended by about 300 people. In late fall, the Club participated in the annual International Festival. The Clubfs number of activities in this Festival gets larger every year. In addition, the Taiko Club and the Tea Ceremony Club, both part of the Nippon Club, are thriving.
I am looking forward to another great year with many activities planned for 2006.
Skip Wilder, recently retired, has spent over 15 years living and working within the Asia Pacific region (7 years living and working in Japan). He was one of the original members and founders of the Triangle Japan Club back in 1989. He hopes to be able to enhance and extend the influence of the club within the North Carolina and Japan communities.
I am a nature-lover at heart, and although RTP has developed tremendously over the past five years that I have been here, I still feel that this area has a good balance of urbanism and nature. I work for one of the many communication companies in the RTP area. With the recent rise in the economy, I hope for continued growth and activity in the RTP area.
Over the kettle,|
tea ladle hovers. Time stops
as the last drop falls.
--- Nancy Hamilton
Japan in Dixie|
umeboshi in white grits
Early budding trees|
show clearly--Mother Nature
is a shameless tease.
A bright sunny day|
Many deadlines rushing by
The Triangle Cha-no-yu Club has enjoyed another year of practicing Tea together and sharing our experience with local school and community groups. This year we performed 8 demonstrations in the community, among them middle and high school Japanese culture and language classes, museum events, elementary school teacher training, events in support of the Japanese Pavilion planned for the Duke Gardens, and, of course, the International Festival in Raleigh. We always enjoy the chance to share Japanese culture with others through the experience of Tea. We also simply enjoy deepening our own experience and understanding of Tea through our weekly practice. This year, we have acquired some new pieces, including new tea caddies both for gthinh and gthickh and have enjoyed incorporating them into our practice. Several of our members are also learning to create new Tea utensils through a Japanese Tea Ware pottery class now being offered at Claymakers studio in Durham. We invite you to come enjoy some of these new pieces with us! Our practices are always welcome to newcomers and visitors. We meet every Thursday morning from 9:30 to 12:00 in Raleigh. Also, our next demonstration will be Sat, March 4, at a special Dollsf Festival Celebration at the Duke Gardens.
For the information about Triangle Cha-no-yu Club, feel free to contact Nancy Hamilton @ firstname.lastname@example.org
*See Cha-no-yu brogg at http://blogs.yahoo.co.jp/trianglechanoyuclub/
The Nippon Club Home Page: http://trianglejapanclub.org/introe.html
The clubfs email address: email@example.com
Please add these to the bookmark in your web browser.
We are not able to put everything into the newsletter that we would like, and so we intend to add news and other articles plus color photos to our web page instead. The Nippon Club Home Page: http://trianglejapanclub.org/introe.html. Also, check out the links page! If you have articles or ideas that you would like to contribute, please send them to our email address. firstname.lastname@example.org
In addition to these, we have a Triangle Nippon electronic mailing list. email@example.com It is for exchanging your opinions on Japan, the US, North Carolina, or a variety of other topics from your daily life via email. The easiest way to subscribe to the Triangle Nippon mailing list is to use the online registration form on the Nippon Club Home Page, but if you prefer, you may also subscribe via email at: firstname.lastname@example.org
We look forward to hearing from you!
The Club's goals are to promote Japanese-American Cultural Exchange, to conduct local service activities, and to provide practical information to those Japanese who live in this area. The Club also seeks to foster deeper mutual understanding between Japan and North Carolina. The Nippon Club is no way limits membership to Japanese but warmly welcomes all who endorse its goals.
An American teacher in Japan is given an unusual bequest by Michi Nakamoto, her Japanese surrogate mother who has just died. It is a tansu filled with Michi-sanfs plum wine; each bottle is wrapped in rice paper. When Barbara unwraps the first bottle she makes a startling discovery: g The inside of the page was covered with close vertical columns of Japanese characters. The calligraphy was meticulous but delicate, written with a brush instead of a pen. Most of the characters were intricate kanji, the literary ideograms that took Japanese schoolchildren years to learn. Barbara didnft know any kanji or either of the modern alphabets; even the simplest character on the page ? there was a backwards C with a deep undercurl at the top ? meant nothing to her. It was like looking at a page of unfamiliar music and not being able to understand the melody.h
Barbara finds a translator who happens to know Michi, Seiji Okada. During the translation Barbara is deeply affected by the revelation that Michi and Seiji are hibakusha, survivors of Hiroshima. During Barbarafs and Seijifs complex love affair, she learns much about human relationships, Japan, and the devastating effects of World War II and Vietnam.
According to a review in Booklist: gDavis-Gardnerfs exceptionally sensitive and enveloping novel illuminates with quiet intensity, psychological suspense, and narrative grace, thecdivide between cultures, the collision of love and war, and, most piercingly, the horrific legacy of Hiroshima. But Davis-Gardnerfs ravishing tale also celebrates the solace of stories, and the transcendent bonds people form under the cruelest of circumstances.h
Angela Davis-Gardner, a creative writing professor at N.C. State University, began her teaching career at Tsuda College in Tokyo. Since that time she has wanted to write a novel set in Japan, with a particular focus on the bombing of Hiroshima.
Plum Wine is Angelafs third novel. Her first two novels, Felice and Forms of Shelter, were reviewed to universal acclaim in the U.S. and France. One of her hopes for Plum Wine is to reach a Japanese audience.
* Quail Ridge Books, Raleigh was filled with over 180 curious people on February 26. After 'the reading', the attendees held long conversations with the Author. One such attendee, Dr. Poole, is a retired pediatrician who worked with American medical experts and Japanese doctors for the medical research program of ABCC* in Hiroshima.
* ABCC: Atomic Bomb Casualty Commission Medical Research Program
Roughly two years ago, when I had gone back to Japan to work after finishing my education overseas, I recall a casual email conversation I had with a friend of mine who had also just come back to Japan in a similar fashion. My email started:
|gI was just at a train station, and it just occurred to me that Japanese people listen to music, but you never see them singing or dancing to the rhythm of the music.h|
The reply from my friend started a conversation that started casually, and ended with a statement that I still remember to this day.
As you walk around the streets of Tokyo, you will notice that everyone has a look of what can be taken as semi-boredom on their face. Even as the pedestrians and shoppers listen to music on their miniature devices of all shapes and colors, they do not appear to be enjoying the music; rather, they look as if they are trying to escape the reality of the world around them. The part that made me the most sad, however, is that no one appears to smile.
However, after a closer look, one can discover an interesting fact. The elder population is one group that actually looks like they are enjoying life. If you look at their faces, you can tell that they are used to smiling. Is this a representation of Japan before it was assimilated into modern metropolitan culture, or is this a result of being freed of their former responsibilities as parents and income-earners? I have not had the chance to talk to them and figure this out yet. However, they pay attention to the scenery around them, and they make an effort to talk and communicate with the people around them.
Seeing the elderly population, I am convinced that it is not too late for everyone else. Most people are, it seems, just enveloped in their daily routines, and they need a catalyst to shake them out of it. Some people have a misconception that not smiling is part of the Japanese way, but if you approach them with a smile, they will be drawn by this and they will eventually start to smile back. This is true at the workplace, and it is true for the tenants of the stores that you pass on a daily basis. Once others start to realize that you greet them with a smile, then every once in a while, they will initiate the greeting with a smile on their own. No matter what peoplefs misconceptions are about eproper etiquette,f this is common nature among all people.
These times may only be just a small part of everyonefs daily life, but if we can introduce a little smiling within the relationships of the people around us, then we ourselves are also encouraged to not be eenvelopedf in the Tokyo atmosphere.
My friend encouraged me by saying, gYou donft have to match the people around you; making other people match you is better for everyone.h It has been two years since that conversation, but I still sometimes find myself relearning the power of smiling. As time passes and I observe the people around me now, I also feel that people are also changing, little by little. I will continue to make my small contribution to the world by remembering to smile, and I hope you will join me as well.
Schedule of Upcoming Events