These cherry blossom floating candles, tiny and sweetly-scented, arrived in a package from my very dear friend in Japan. She and I have been friends since high school, and as the years pass, we’ve only grown closer in spirit. She is my “all-weather, all-season friend,” and someday I would like to live next door to her in the Napa Valley so that we can have tea and conversation together every afternoon. For now, from time to time, we send each other packages filled with loveliness from our respective corners of the world.
She sent me so many beautiful gifts in shades of pink and lavender this time:
The coin purse is from Kazurasei in Kyoto, established in 1865 and most famous for artfully-crafted combs and hair ornaments to wear with kimono. The moment I saw this coin purse, I knew what I wanted to do with it. When the rain stops, I’m going to carry some loose change in it and walk to Starbucks for a cup of tea. I’ll wish my friend were with me, of course, but at least I’ll have these books and magazines to keep me company:
I’ve already started reading the little book on the left with its title that translates to something like Thinking of a Gentle Spring. My friend first introduced me to its poet-author in the early days of our friendship, and this volume opens with a simple, sweet tale of a friendship between two young girls named Milk and Cocoa.
One of the gifts came in this packaging the color of cherry blossoms. Like a fortune cookie, it reads, “If you understand nature, then you’ll be able to live a long happy life.”
Thank you, dear friend, for knowing me so well.