Seishun 18 kippu can take you pretty much everywhere if you have the time~ Mine took me to Tokushima this summer, going through Gifu, Okayama on my way there and then Takamatsu and Himeji on my way back.
I love just sitting and looking out the window when I’m on the train~ mountains, rivers, more mountains, more rivers… skies, blue skies, full moon skies, sunny skies, clouds in all sorts of shapes, trees! Rice fields, houses, small and big.
It was such a beautiful trip~ I absolutely fell in love with the AIR in Shikoku. Something about the mountains and the sea and the big skies. Something about space~
In Gifu, it was time to harvest the first batch of indigo. And we learned how to do namabazome, dying with fresh indigo leaves. The indigo leaves smell so good as they dry and look a little bit like tea.
In Okayama, I stayed in a village in the mountains in the middle of rice fields and listened to a frog concert under the full moon. Friends of mine are organizing an art festival called Misaki Art Festival there. During the day, I went to see the sea, it was happy and silver and I saw the little islands in the Setonaikai for the first time.
In Tokushima, I visited two places that make SUKUMO, I wanted to see with my eyes where the indigo I use to dye fabric came from. It was wonderful. I felt great there, talking to people who love AI. Maybe because it is such hard work to make sukumo, and it takes a lot of time, I felt the patience and love in the people’s voices I talked to… I remember clearly Toyama san telling me she wants to make “II AI”, good AI, it’s not just AI, it’s II AI. In this II, is all the love. I met my first GIANT tree in Tokushima as well.
On my way back, I stopped by Takamatsu and took a boat to an island called OGIJIMA. The people of Ogijima live mostly a life of self-sufficiency, they grow their vegetables and fruits, I ate frozen AKEBI, which was so good! They pick seaweed from the sea and fish. I like that this life is to live, people are not rich, and houses are falling apart, young people leave the island to have a “better” life. but on the island, there is peace and the sound of the sea, the wind was absolutely priceless. I had my own private beach and it was absolutely heaven! ah, I also went to Megijima where there was a display of bonsais, and there again, I let myself float in the sea, it was warm and welcoming and loving~
My last stop was Amaji, in Himeji, where I stayed with two beautiful humans, a potter and his wife, whom I’d met on the plane three years ago. His pottery is only earth, that he fires with firewood only, and many colors could come up, from the ashes in the keln, falling back on the piece of work. Sometimes, the ash falls and creates colors inside a cup or a bowl, like little blue pools, like jewels. We ate popo, and brown rice and talked ALL DAY!
In French we say all good things have an end. but I really don’t think that is true. In fact, I am starting to think there is really no beginning and no end. My heart is so full from these moments. arigatou, seishun 18 kippu.