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Shopping Adventure With A Few Twists


Another amazing day in Kumamoto and I have a very special job to complete today.  Gift shopping for my amazing little people, Sami and Steven.  And I’m hoping I can squeeze in a few other things as well.

So here are my shopping lists.  Ready, Set, GO!!!


Sami’s shopping list


Steven’s shopping list


To get to the shops,  we decided to hit the pavement today.  Below are a couple of pictures to give you a feel of what it was like for us walking along the side of the road today.


Enjoying a walk to the shops


And below is a photo of where I went shopping.  To be truthful I didn’t last all that long before I was pulled to Suizenji Gardens.  I did however make a small hole in Sami and Steven’s shopping list.


Shopping in the Kamitori


I’m more of a quiet kind of person and like being amongst nature.  Below is a  pictures taken at the Suizenji Gardens.  I had part of my day here just sitting, listening and relaxing. Thankfully there are also gift shops at Suizenji Gardens so I was able to most of the shopping completed.   I just needed to do one last stop on the way back to the Sohonbu for one final gift.


This is where I had lunch today and some quiet time.  Truly amazing.  You can see more photos of Suizenji Gardens on my Facebook page.


Time to enjoy a local book store (even if I can’t read much of anything on the shelves).  There is something about standing around in a book store and flicking through pages passing the time.  I admit that I spent a good part of my time in the kids picture book section but in my defence I was looking for a book for Sami.  If you look closely at Sami’s shopping list, she did request a ‘Japanese book you think is good for me.’  Well, to find that book, I needed to do a bit of reading.  :>)


This is one of my favourite book stores which is located in the Kamitori. Kids picture books are on the ground floor at the back.  :>)


Back to the Sohonbu by 3:00pm so that Helen wouldn’t be left waiting on the front door step of the Sohonbu. Soon after returning to the Sohonbu, Marc Sensei dropped in for a visit.  Always great to catch up with Marc Sensei and learn from his journey in both Karate and in life.  I look forward to enjoying time with Marc Sensei and his kids class on Saturday afternoon at the Sohonbu.  I may even get to go and play in the playground behind the Sohonbu.  I love playing there when Sami and Steven come to Japan.


Helen catching up with Marc Sensei


Ladies class tonight with Minowa Sensei.  Minowa Sensei has a great wealth of knowledge and is very patient. In the second part of the class I had the opportunity to develop Kusanku.   Minowa Sensei was very generous with her thoughts on basic techniques of this kata and also the application. I get the feeling I’ll need to revisit these ideas a lot more before they will become natural.


Thursday night ladies class with Minowa Sensei and some great ladies.


One of my favourite memories of today would have to be getting amongst the shops and stopping for a chat with the locals.  There are some truly inspirational people in this world with the most extraordinary gifts.  Below is a picture of a lady that has served and waited on me every time I have been to Suizenji.


If you are in Kumamoto, you’ve gotta try Ikinari Dango


If I get back to Suizenji Gardens before I go, I’ll get a photo of a husband and wife team that have also waited on me and gone above and beyond for the last few years.  Today, I was asking for slippers for Sami and Steven.  The man never had any in store with him, but he got on his bicycle and went away and came back with some really cool slippers.  Whilst I waited back at the store I was seated, given snacks to eat, ice tea to drink and an electric fan to cool me down.

And a quote for today:  “And then I realised that adventures are the best way to learn.” ~ Unknown


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