Of course, we’ll need a guest book and a photo album for the artifacts and sentiments from lovely attendee. In our case, we’ll combine the two (written and photo messages) into one mighty tome with the help of self-service insta-camera (we have 200+ films on the ready!) with snaps added to the book on the spot, then personalized with their written messages.
The book itself is a classic Japanese lacquered artifact, heavy and handbuilt – btw these types of scrapbook are my favourite to make (loads of them usually using recycled board game and calendar paper) – purchased from urban history explorer Jason Vanderhill with assist from Laura Bzowy and hauled over by my kinfolk.
Look forward to settling in on the following Monday to see the photo treats and scribbled missives duly noted by lovely attendees.
My pals from Hootsuite – which obv was a such a big part of my life and something i never go to “say goodbye” to – made the most remarkably kind dispatch.
The intrepid Cameron Uganec nonchalantly dropped a note that he and Ryan Holmes had a wrangled a little something and sent me this link which features the sweetest words a fellow ever deserves to hear from colleagues > friends > family spread around the world.
This is rather personal to say the least and my first instinct is to keep it this way but i also know that many other people will truly be edified by watching/hearing this outpouring of agape. As such, no holding back.
PS I would do that thing where you tag all appropriate people but lots of “cool kids” aren’t hanging out here and this is a bit too sensitive to the schoolyard fo Twitter and def not Snapchattable so just going to send it out as-is, with all the hugs.
I will however include a reply to the participants who extended such a gracious effort to this drifting poet who is no longer drifting, ergo:
I am so wonderfully filled with all the emotions and so incredibly grateful to each of you for your words and vibes. I explained to Ryoko (who loved seeing all of you and was answering back to your charming Japanese) who each of you are, and how we came into each other’s world, and also how i never go to say “goodbye” … i didn’t want to leave, one day my body/life/world changed and was never able to return – this was *so* hard and as i collapsed and drifted for so long. So many times, just when i needed it most, one of you wonderful beings would appear with a helping hand, a kind word, a check in, a rescue I’ve forgotten a lot of things but not those #realtalk.
Now this wonderful video creates something far better than “closure”, rather helps me open this wonderful new reinvention of life. Truly thrilled and so completely surprised to see face after beautiful face (my goodness you are all so fabulously good looking!) – hearing your sincere words is something i will treasure this week and forever. This goes in the vault and in my heart.
Please accept my fondest thanks for letting me part of your lives and i hope to be a worthy friend until we are all olden and grey. Oh also, was so cool to see everyone spread all over the world on various career (is that what you call them?) and adventures. Of course, please make sure i have current postal address so i can send you random cards and treats and make sure i introduce myself to your kiddos (where applicable).
Thank goodness I’m a country boy… Back in our little home on the outskirts of a underappreciated provincial capital after a few days in the “big city”… All the skyscrapers, swirling highways, and hectic people… Well it’s just not for me. Here we have flowers, trees, fresh air and importantly, quiet.
The good news is, got the official paperwork underway, picked up custom rings and utilized at least a dozen different means of conveyance.
Totally wiped me out but 藤田良子 kept our pace slow and I didn’t try to do “too much” by rushing around to do everything in one day as a normal human would likely do. I’m hardly “normal” in all sorts of ways 🙂
We have a week till all the renegades start showing up, & 9 days til 3-days of action… still lots of little things on the list but most can be done while wearing pajamas.
So very grateful for all the kind words coming in and all sorts of different channels > You know I’ll reply to everything *eventually*, but might be eventually.
Now will rest (maybe after an episode of “Great Teacher Onizaki” (oldish tv fun & good Japanese study for me).
Included a neat train to sparkle up this wee missive.
After affidavit at Honorary Consulate of Canada located in the Tsuda lumber yard in an industrial port area of Osaka requiring creative transport route planning including various non-JR trains and the “New Tram” (which is no longer new but i suppose “tram” by itself isn’t much of a name), we hit up a hot spring spa next to a sports complex featuring a boat racing stadium – rather thunder-dome-esque – for several hours soak – indoors & out, then found an appropriate surface street bus (my preferred mode as involves less going up and down stairs/escalator/elevators to elevated rail or subways plus less general “hecticness” as I get very sensory overloaded easily) to Namba station area loaded with shopping streets, covered arcades where we bought some lovely blue hemp cloth for a tablecovering at goat farm party, as well as importantly devouring two mighty bowls of menya (noodles), along with boiled gyoza, at an impossibly tiny restaurant before heading back to hotel (where my request for extra pillow was denied) to watch an episode of Great Teacher Onizaki.
Today is picking up rings, buying various small items at Bic, Tokyu Hands, Shinseibashi then back to calm provincial town via speedy train.
This dispatch shares the logistics of getting to and fro various important locations for the wedding festivities, specifically: Munetade Shrine, Fuyahei resto and Rural Caprine Farm goat farm by party via train and taxi. Also, the general plan about what to expect, when to show up and how to dress. Plus an overview of activities to do with free time like museums (lots), hot springs, picnics, and day trips to Kurashiki (art and canals, Bizen (pottery and swords), Hiroshima (bombs), and Kyoto (everything). Plus tips on staying in communication with all your new friends – both Japanese folks and the other international renegades.
Getting Around Okayama by Streetcar, Bus, Taxi and Bicycle
In prep for a barrage of international renegade diplomats descending upon Okayama comes a few ways of getting around the city, as well as a finding other information about information, ya know for tourists.
Note: Next dispatch contains specifics about getting to shrine (ceremony), resto (fancy lunch) and goat farm (party). In the meantime, please accept my humble offering.
This dispatch shares wayfinding tips to get from the main train station, down a covered shopping arcade, over a canal, a stop for coffee at Stand (optional) and then to Koraku hotel (conveniently embedded with a post office and convenience store). Then passing statues and bars, to the Okayama View Hotel – located across from the Birkenstock store and ¥100 shop – and over to the Tenmaya shopping area and transit hub as needed.
A lil video in which i provide semi-useful instructions for riding trains (specifically from Kansai /KIX airport to Okayama), buying tickets, redeeming JR Rail Pass and getting to platform… as well as mispronounce various words, stumble through “advice”, share poorly-made photos, and in general provide a amusing if not entirely useful primer.
A few handy annotations for pals coming to Ryoko and my wedding about what to do when you arrive at Kansai/Osaka (KIX) airport including: getting cash, finding food, hitting up toilet and a few other fun oddities up until you get to the train station (more on that later).