_____ The landlady and all the staff of Ryokan, Japanese style accommodation, see off the guest leaving till they disappear from the sight with benign countenance.
bonsai on the table in the lounge, changing according to the season and occasion
simple,elegant lamp stands at the corner of the small lounge.
decorated with “ikebana” flower arrangement, or treasure of the house like a small piece of ceramic incense burner, or scroll of paintings or calligraphy._
As you will notice in japan we are not used to welcome others by open arms and big hugs, but with a modest smile and bow instead of stretching our hand for shaking. I hope you notice they prepare to welcome you by, for example, sweeping the street outside the door and water a bit for fresh feeling, by selecting the vase and flower, selecting the sweet of the season, asking the kids to behave…etc.
When you happen to meet the group of students taking school excursion you might be surprised by their big voice saying “hello!” and often they surround you asking simple questions giggling or sweating, then ask you awkwardly for joining together for the photos.
The spirit of “omotenashi” can be seen even now at any place in Japan…I hope.
For you, who would like to travel in Kyoto,
Johnnie Hillwalker’s Kyoto walking tour
Kyoto Private guide, Shihoko Hirooka, Kyoto private guide