Hidemi’s Rambling by Hidemi Woods

Singer, Songwriter and Author from Kyoto, Japan.

Hidemi’s Rambling No.399

on February 29, 2012

Every year in January, I visit a temple to pray for good luck in the new year. It’s a common practice for most Japanese people. Since I moved last year, I visited a local temple of my new town for the first time about a month ago. It was a small, uninhabited temple surrounded by three large trees that were over three hundred years old. Before praying, offering money should be put into a wooden box set in front of a temple building. I usually put a one-yen coin that is of least value in Japan into the offering box because I’m cheap. But this time, seven feet of snow buried the site and I couldn’t go in. I had to pray outside the entrance and throw in the offering money. As the temple building was a hundred feet away, my one-yen coin, which is made of tin, couldn’t possibly reach there. Even so, I threw it with all my strength because I felt that the closer the coin landed, the more grace I would get. Since then, I’ve had a pain in the joint of my right elbow for a month. I feel a sharp pain in my right forearm every time I bend my elbow or hold something with my hand. My partner reads this as a sign that says I should stop being stingy and being too careful for small change this year, as my desperate coin throw caused it. It sounds to me more like his request than a sign. I, on the other hand, read this as a punishment to throw money onto the ground. Either way, I’ve got a pain from a temple instead of grace…


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