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JULY 2021


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Don't stop growing…


Aika Okita

7.2 2021

Pole Dance Instructor

I thought back to the time when I first met "Paul" until now.


At the age of 32, I was divorced with a three-year-old daughter, and soon after I remarried.

I remarried soon after, and became a "mother" to a three-year-old and two girls, one two years older than the other.

Then I had another daughter.


In a short period of time, I became a mother of four daughters and became a good mother to them.

I wanted to be a good mother to them and a good guide for them as a woman.

I was busy with work, housework, and childcare.

I was exhausted from the daily routine.


At that time, it was as if it just came out of nowhere.

"I should start pole dancing.

I thought.

I don't know why, but now that I think about it, I have no idea.


"After my 35th birthday, I'll start pole dancing, and I'll keep doing it, not just for three days like I've been doing...


I remember thinking that vaguely, but with a feeling that just fell into my heart.

I remember thinking that.

Aika Okita

I turned 35 in October and started knocking on the door of "pole dancing" at the beginning of November.

It was a lot of fun and I looked forward to it every week, but in December I found out that I was pregnant.

Perhaps it was because this was my third child, but I had plenty of time to relax my mind and body.

She had no doubts about having a baby, nor about continuing with the pole.

I continued to go to the studio until my belly got bigger, and I challenged myself to do the studio recital two months later.

At the end of July, I gave birth to a baby girl.

I became a mother of five daughters.

One month later, I resumed lessons with a baby in my arms.

Four months later, I entered a contest: ......

My passion for "pole" has not disappeared, and I have continued to take lessons, and I am now 39 years old.

Despite her short experience and poor technique, she is still the representative of the studio.

I have been recognized by my mentor, who I respect as a woman and as a human being.

I've been working as an instructor since September last year.

Now that I think about it... or rather, I think I am a crazy mother.

In my own way, I've been rubbed by people, polished by people, learned and lived among people.

I learned and lived among people.

But after that day when I was 35 years old, my life started to change drastically and vividly.

I did not have any dance experience.

I didn't have any experience in dancing, nor did I have a job or hobby that required physical exercise.

I was just an ordinary housewife, but how did my life become so "pole"?


I'm doing pole dance, which is mainly a genre of pole sports.

In order to perform the technique, friction between the skin and the pole is necessary.

In order to perform the technique, the friction between the skin and the pole is necessary, so the clothes are inevitably highly exposed.

Therefore, I have to face my own body.


The mind and body are closely connected, and any dissonance in either can affect the other.


If you change the way you think and perceive things, the way you use your body will also change.

If the way you use your body changes, the way you express yourself through pole dance will also change.


I was led to pole dance.

As I wrapped my body around the pole.

I was able to learn more about myself.

In order to become a better version of myself.

To become a better version of myself, I had to take a sincere look at my mind and body.

To express my potential.

To steer a brighter and more joyful life.

I believe that pole dancing is one of the treasures that I have acquired.


In the process, I met my favorite teacher, who I can't describe in a few words.

I was able to meet friends that I truly cherish.

I have a dream of making pole sports an Olympic sport and a dream of one day having grandchildren.

I want to be active until I die, even if I have grandchildren and become a grandmother.

I want to be an active member of the sport until I die. 

I am able to go through life with so many thoughts and feelings.


No matter how old you are, you can always challenge yourself.

There is a difference between not being able and not doing.

Thoughts always turn into actions.

The environment will change depending on your actions.


I will always remember the important things that Paul and my mentor taught me.

I want to keep the important things that Paul and my mentor taught me in my heart from now on.


And my other treasures.

My five daughters.

"Oh my God! Mom, stop it, you're making me look like a fool!

I'm secretly looking forward to the day when I'll be holding the pole

I'm secretly looking forward to the day when I'll be holding the pole while my five daughters say to me, "Stop it, Mom!

Thank you for all your help and support. ......


text and photo by Aika Okita


Pole Dance Instructor

Aika Okita


Lives in Kochi City, Kochi Prefecture / Belongs to MIKA Dance Produce / Mother of five daughters who is moving forward positively every day while working as a sewer, smartphone instructor, and other "do-it-yourselfers

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June 2021


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Things I wanted to write down before I turned 30.

Yurino Oshima


UX Design Student / Actor / Creator

6.2 2021

Yurino Oshima

I am currently living in Vienna, Austria with my German husband and our shelter cat, Harunosuke, and I started learning web design with a focus on UX in May this year. I'm surprised at the unexpected turn of events, but I'm also convinced that I've finally settled into a place where I feel comfortable.

This is because 

When I was in the sixth grade, after my older brother passed away after a long battle with illness, I had a vague but strong idea that I wanted to live life to the fullest and enjoy it, even though I didn't know the meaning of life. One day, I want to be able to help society in a way that suits me and give hope to many people. That's what I've always wanted to do.

When I was 16 years old, I went to Tokyo from Aichi to audition for a major singer's competition, which was attended by thousands of people, and it almost opened the door for me.

In the end, I was forced to turn down the opportunity by my parents because of my age, and they insisted that I have to graduate from an institution of higher learning (although I understand the reasoning behind it now).

The illness and death of my older brother played a big role in my life, and I was never given the opportunity to do what I really wanted, but more than that, my family was very desolate, to say the least, and I was always pessimistic and hopeless about my birth in my teenage years. Despite my rebellious ambitions and aspirations, I lacked affection, self-affirmation and peace of mind, and this was the biggest problem and challenge of my life.

I wanted something absolute inside of me, not a huge fortune or easily changeable affection, but first and foremost, I wanted to find information from all over the world through books and the Internet, and at the same time, I wanted to meet all kinds of communities outside of school, young and old, men and women, different industries, different races... I was able to look into many different ways of life and hearts.

In the winter of my 18th year, I chose to become a Christian, and now, more than 10 years later, I consider that moment to be the greatest turning point in my life.

Because of the circumstances described above, I did not plan to work in the apparel industry after graduation. So what did I do? First of all, I decided to study English in Edinburgh for three months and then travel around 14 cities in Europe by bus, because I wanted to experience a different culture, especially a place where Christianity is deeply rooted and there are relatively few Japanese students.

It was a graduation gift from my late grandfather, who lived separately from my parents and always paid attention to my movements.


After returning to Japan, I joined a small entertainment agency in Yokohama that I was fortunate enough to work with, and I began to work in theater because I was moved by the theater rehearsals and speculated that I might have a chance to sing. However, I couldn't make a living doing something that I had suddenly started as an adult, so while I was ostensibly working as an actor, most of the time I was working at different jobs to make a living.

At that time, there were not many options for jobs that would allow me to earn enough money to live on my own in Yokohama, while rehearsing and performing as an actor, and paying back the scholarship I borrowed when I was a professional.

In the midst of all this, I almost always attended the Sunday morning service that I loved so much, and when I found time, I did church ministry and creative activities such as painting and knitting. Even though I had little margin or money to spare, I felt that I was finally able to live "myself" as an adult, and my heart was full and happy.

However, many people do not have a good image of this way of life. I think it was because I was a terrible talker, but from their point of view, I was probably a funny person who was doing this and that even though I wasn't particularly accomplished. Even though I wasn't living my life to gain their approval, I honestly felt frustrated.

However, a future awaited me in which I would be able to say, "I'm glad I took this path.


One Sunday when I was 24 years old, while we were all enjoying coffee and snacks after the service, one of the church staff secretly spoke to me. "A media company there is looking for a Christian who can act. You should do it. This was something that I had been praying for at the time, so I said yes and went to hear about it immediately.

I said yes, and immediately went to hear about it. It wasn't a job, and as it turned out, it was only a momentary role, but I was so happy to have a role in what I wanted at the time, and I believed it was an answer to my prayers.

The "lovely German" who was in charge of media marketing as a missionary in that project was my current husband. We started dating, and when he expressed his desire to return to Europe for a few years to fulfill his own dream, we got married in Japan and moved to Bremen, Germany in 2018 and to Vienna, Austria in 2020.

In this way, not only [having a partner with the same faith], but also [living abroad for a few years] and [acting in a film abroad], which were my dreams and on my prayer list, came true in a way I never imagined.

"The number of Japanese who live in Europe and have experience in theater is limited. Even though there is not a lot of demand, the competition is not high as long as you can find a slot, so I was able to get off to a good start, appearing in TV programs, advertising videos, teaching videos, and videos for corporate use.

I stayed in Greece for about half a month to shoot the movie "Persephone", an operetta film, where I appeared as an actor and also played the alto part as a singer. I felt as if I had been rewarded and consoled for wanting to be a singer in the past.

In Vienna, I was asked to make costumes by the producer of a dance team that I met in a church. In addition to my theater experience, I was also fortunate to have learned how to sew as a student, which helped me to protect my family's finances, which were under pressure at the time.


I am grateful for the kindness of God and people who give me opportunities, and I believe that the success of my life is that I have regained the bright perspective on life and the ability to recognize and love others because I recognize and love myself, which I had been given naturally in my childhood.


It's not all smooth sailing when it comes to the situation.

There are plenty of minor incidents, and in 2020, with the onset of the corona disaster that the world is experiencing, "My husband's longtime dream will come true next month. The timing of the event was perfect. For me, too, the opportunities for visual appearances and creative work ceased to exist at that point. I had just moved to Austria, so I had very little support from the government.

Then, as usual, I opened up my social networking site and saw a commercial for an IT-related company that I had shot in the Netherlands a few months before, in which I had appeared.

It was for a full remote job opening.

As I was desperately looking for a job due to an emergency situation, I immediately applied for the job, and at the interview, I made a point of saying that I appeared in the commercial to make up for my lack of business English skills, which I needed as a common language within the company.

As a result, I was offered a job as a technical support agent.

I was to be the breadwinner of the family and my husband was to be the stay-at-home husband while he was job hunting.

We had just moved to a foreign country, and suddenly the roles of husband and wife were forced to change, and we were forced to live in lockdown while having to save a lot of money.

I had to endure all sorts of problems that came with it, and I spent many days thinking about how to survive with my family and myself in the future, no matter where we were in the world.

It was about a year later that my husband finally found a new job.

It was about a year later that my husband finally found a new job.

When I was thinking that I wanted to do something a little more self-directed/creative, he recommended a UX design course that he had found through his new job that was perfect for me.

It's a full-time, remote school from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., with prep materials and homework.

It's a class that requires a lot of English comprehension and discussion skills, but thanks to the fact that I've been using a lot of English every day at work for a year, I've been able to keep up with it, and I'm thinking, "So this is where I'm supposed to be. I think.

At the same time, as I learn the skills necessary to be a UX (User Experience) designer, I am reminded every day that "this is a job where all of my history, which seems to be a jumble, can be utilized to a great extent.


It's a job that allows me to utilize all of my history, even the ones I thought were troublesome, such as my tendency to search for the other side of things and the essence of things, the days I didn't want to do it, and even the scars on my heart from being abused.

This is the reason why we should not be afraid of the Lord. (Hebrews 12:11)


At this point in time, I don't know if I will necessarily become a UX designer after this course, or if it will become my lifelong job, but I do have some thoughts.

At first glance, it's hard to imagine a complete picture of life, and each piece may look good, bad, or incomprehensible to you, but when you put them together, you end up with a picture that is unexpected but makes sense. I want to live my life in such a way that I can successfully complete the picture, and someday go to sleep feeling good.



text and photo- Satomi Uchino


UX Design Student / Actor / Creator

Yurino Oshima


Lives in Vienna. She started her career in the web industry after the Corona disaster and is now studying UX(&UI) design full-time. Works include the Greek film "Persephone", Australian TV "Back To Blett", and the commercial "Philips Sonicare International".

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May 2021
cherry blossoms_photo_by_Lea_Thomas.JPG


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As I Circle Around The Block

Every morning, the sun creeps over the dark silhouette of my neighborhood and fills our East-facing bedroom with the warmth of a new day.

Spring is here and the early, golden light is proof of its arrival.


Outside, the long rows of adjacent yards form a valley of sorts, disrupting the cityscape with a private strip of greenery.

The birds have been up for hours.

I look to see who’s singing but the evergreen boughs of the neighbor’s giant blue spruce are too dense to make any clear discovery.

Down to my left, a humble apple tree, flush with fresh white blossoms, catches the light that filters down through an old sycamore’s branches, still nurturing the first fuzzy buds of the emerging season.


Breakfast is a daily ritual. I can’t overstate my love for a lightly toasted slice of sourdough, generously dressed in honey and butter.

Like many others who were finding ways to cope with the consequences of a global pandemic, I learned to bake bread last year.


I learned a lot of other things, too.


John, my partner and musical collaborator for the last 13 years, boils water for coffee.

I sit down at the dining table, brushing against its uneven edge. We got it for free, years ago, cat-scratched and worn, and I consequently turned it into a colorful tile mosaic project.

Now, it is another artifact of one of the many lives we have lived in New York. 




musician / artist

5.2 2021

Lea Thomas
Lea Thomas

In the far corner of our living room, the light flickers like smoke.

A breeze ripples through the patchwork silk curtains I stitched together, stirring the gentle metal windchimes we hung in the window sill.


A collection of plants and textiles decorate the wall, encompassing an area reserved for floor seating and yoga.One of my favorite guitars, a vintage gold Japanese Les Paul-look alike, lives here.


My steel-string parlor acoustic hangs from the fringes of a light-filled alcove that houses my floor loom and spools of fibers. I believe it’s currently tuned to C-A-D-G-A-D, a sound I’ve been enjoying lately.


I like to sit here on the wood floor and look out from the bay window into the canopy of our guardian sycamore.

In just a few weeks, when the leaves are mature and full, this view will make me feel like I live in a tree house part of the time.

I get dressed to go to the park and pack a rollie. I stop under the last cherry in a row of trees that are just reaching peak bloom.

She leans an armful of blossoms down towards me and I press my forehead into the feathery petals. Have I ever felt anything so soft?

There is an energy igniting in the streets.

People are in a celebratory mood.

Last year at this time, New York City was in a lockdown and the magnolias mostly bloomed for themselves.


An occasional phrase breaks through the collective murmur as groups of friends and family get to know each other’s faces again after such a strange year.

I stop to greet each tulip.

They are with us for such a short time!


As I circle around the block, I come across a ginkgo tree, an Asia-native with lung-shaped leaves and a beautiful, sparse branching pattern.


Pausing to take in the clusters of green shoots, I remember that tomorrow brings longer days and the next phase of this cycle of growth.


text and photoprahs - Lea Thomas


musician / artist

Lea Thomas


Born in Hawaii and based in Brooklyn, Lea Thomas started her musical journey early with piano, later moving to guitar as her main accompanying instrument. Recording her own music as a teenager led the Japanese-American songwriter to New York City at 17 where she gained a footing attending an audio engineering school and working in studios before continuing on her own artist’s path for the next decade plus.


Thomas’s first record, Want For Nothing, was released in 2017, followed by her Part of This Place EP and an ambient/folk/field recording collaboration with John Thayer called Blue of Distance, released in 2018 and 2019, respectively. Her latest single, “What Did The Music Sound Like” was released on April 27, 2021.


In addition to her musical output, Lea Thomas is also a visual artist with a focus on hand weaving and natural dyes. Her frequent use of indigo pigment is reflective of her ancestral heritage. She is an enthusiast of traditional herbal medicine and produces her own line of wild, seasonal herbal products under the name All In All Apothecary.

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Released  "What Did the Music Sound Like"

The newest single from Japanese-American singer-songwriter Lea Thomas was released April 27 on Spirit House Records.

The song is dedicated to the music that served as a backdrop to the great shifts in her life, such as her move at 17 from Hawaii, where she was born, to New York, where she has lived now for over a decade.


In the midst of the isolating global pandemic, Thomas kept the production for the accompanying music video simple, filming it entirely on her phone and editing it herself.

The video strings together “selfie” clips with vignettes of New York that hold nostalgic significance.  

Lea Thomas - "What Did the Music Sound Like" (Official Music Video)

Lea Thomas - "What Did the Music Sound Like" (Official Music Video)

Play Video

Watch the video for “What Did The Music Sound Like” by Lea Thomas.



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Called to a place


I am currently teaching Japanese to Thai students at a high school in Thailand.

Before coming to Thailand, I taught in Mexico for seven years.

When I tell this story, people say, "Mexico! Thailand! When I tell people this, they are always surprised, and even I feel that I am in a very different place from the future I had imagined in the past.

To tell the truth, neither Mexico nor Thailand (or even my current workplace, for that matter) was "Plan A" to begin with.  Still, I believe that I was called to a place.


I want to work abroad in the future.

This has been my dream since I was in kindergarten.

When I was in the fifth grade, I asked my parents to send me to an English cram school.

I also attended an English conversation school, and during my summer vacation at university, I did a homestay in the United States with the money I saved from my part-time job.

For a long time, I thought that "overseas" meant "English-speaking countries.

I changed my mind during spring break of my third year of university.

After studying Japanese language education as a minor, I participated in a three-week educational internship in Mexico.

This was the overseas training I had been longing for.  I was assigned to the elementary school and was in charge of 6th graders.

It was difficult because I didn't understand Spanish, but the students were all friendly and very cute.

I was allowed to do a homestay with a Mexican family, and they took me to the pyramids and museums on weekends.

At the end of the training, they asked me, "Would you like to work for us after you graduate? She asked me if I would like to work for her after graduation.

It was probably a joke, and I didn't take it seriously at the time, but that summer I was given a formal interview.  However, my parents were fiercely opposed, saying that I had to be dispatched by a proper Japanese organization.

At the time, it was an ice age for employment, but as expected, many of my friends had already found jobs by the time I was about to graduate. At that time, I received a notice of the final interview for a temp job.  The result was a rejection.  I was so shocked, thinking that I was going to be lost after graduation.  The next evening.  The next evening, I opened my email and found a message from a school in Mexico saying that I was officially hired.

When one door closes, another opens somehow I managed to convince my parents to let me go to Mexico.

Japanese language teacher

5.2 2021

Satomi Uchino
Satomi Uchino

Even though I had been there once for practical training, the training and the actual work were completely different.

Even though my internship was at an elementary school, I was assigned to a junior high school and high school, and I had to deal with a class that was as naughty as a zoo every day.

Even so, my colleagues were all respectful and enthusiastic teachers who carefully nurtured me as a newcomer.

I was able to develop my basic skills as a Japanese language teacher, and what I learned here is still the basis of my teaching today.  I retired from this school after three years of service, and later taught at a local university in central Mexico.


I ended up staying in Mexico for seven years, but I tried to go to Thailand once during my stay.

I had the "impatience" of a woman just before 30, just like anyone else, and I had a vague feeling of anxiety about whether I could stay here.

At that time, I applied for a teaching job in Thailand and made it to the final interview, but was again unsuccessful.  I was devastated, but a Japanese acquaintance who had lived in Mexico for a long time had this to say to me: "Don't panic!

There's no need to be hasty! The time will come when you will be called to a place, and when it does, things will go smoothly! She encouraged me.  That's when I first encountered the idea of being called to a place, but looking back, I feel like I'm being called to Mexico.

If that's the case, I'll stay here a little longer.  I set a deadline and decided to give it a try.

By the time I had set a deadline, no timing or opportunity had come my way.

I guess it's like distancing yourself from a rotten lover.

I decided to return to Japan with no idea what to expect.

I've had enough of Mexico! I have no regrets! But I couldn't stop crying on the plane.


After returning to Japan, hard days awaited me.

I was done with teaching Japanese, and although I tried to find other possibilities, I was not very enthusiastic.

I wonder how many times I received rejections and rejections.

I was sad that I was worthless.

I did about three random short-term temp jobs, but I didn't find them enjoyable at all.

I couldn't find anything "worth living for" or "worth doing," and each day felt so long.

There were days when I didn't step out of my house at all.

When I came to my senses, the idea of "teaching Japanese abroad again" was rising up in my mind.


Then, I received a call from my former teacher at the university.

She said, "A friend of mine who is working in Thailand is looking for a replacement, would you like to take on the challenge?

The chance to go to Thailand, which I had once given up, suddenly came to me.

Perhaps now was the right time.

I hurriedly sent in my resume, and within two weeks, I received an offer of employment.

The day was December 26th.

I thought it was a one-day late Christmas present.

There's no need to be hasty! There will come a time when you will be called to a place, and when that happens, things will go smoothly!

As She had said, things went smoothly and I ended up working in Thailand.




I had never been to Thailand before.

I had never been to Thailand before, and of course I spoke no Thai.

Even so, it is the same Asian country, and the miscellaneous streets and places of prayer in the city are similar to those in Mexico, so I felt at home right away.

I am the only Japanese person at work, but I teach Japanese every day with my colleagues who are serious and meticulous in a good way that is not typical of Thai people.

On the days when I am able to teach a class that is full of laughter and learning, where my students and I exchange energy with each other, I feel as if the flame of life is burning with a roaring sound.

I feel that I am alive.  My body must be exhausted, but I can feel my heart filling up with energy.

I've had my fill of teaching Japanese! I've tasted it all! I thought I was done with teaching Japanese, but this job is still interesting and keeps me excited.

I'm really glad I didn't quit at that time.

It's not a "Plan A" life at all, with all the failures, but I'm rather pleased with the progress I've made so far, where I've been called to places.

I have no idea how long I will stay in Thailand or where I will go, but I am sure there is a place that will call me.




text and photo- Satomi Uchino


Japanese language teacher

Satomi Uchino


After teaching in Mexico for seven years, she has been teaching at a public high school in Thailand since 2013.

She is currently distributing Japanese teaching materials on YouTube.

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April 2021


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Choose gentleness with intention

I run a small hotel in Bali called "kubu sari".

My first visit to Bali was in 1995.


At that time, I was working as a trainer and aerobics instructor at a hospital sports facility and studying aromatherapy.

Every time I went on vacation, I would go abroad and take aromatherapy treatments there.

I wanted to learn aromatherapy. I wanted to learn from someone like that.

I was on a journey to find a master of aromatherapy.


I studied various types of massage, such as Hawaiian Lomi Lomi, Mayan traditional massage, Taiwanese massage, and Ayurveda, but when I received a massage from a certain person in Bali, I thought, "This is it! I thought, "This is it!

Three months after returning to Japan, I told the company, "I'm quitting my job to go to Bali to learn Balinese dance and Balinese massage.

I told the company that I was quitting my job to go to Bali to study Balinese dance and massage, and I decided to stay for a long time.

This was the end of my strong desire to go to Bali, and it was only by chance that I started to run a general store and a hotel in Bali.


kubu sari hotelier / ototsumugi representative director

4.1 2021

Makiko Kurachi
Makiko Kurachi

One day, the owner of the regular inn where I was staying during a long stay

The owner of the inn where I was staying for a long period of time said, "My son is getting upset, please do something about it. The owner of the inn came to me.

Since I was taking care of him, I wondered if there was anything I could do. I thought to myself

So I suggested, "Why don't we open a store together? That was the beginning of my proposal.

He replied, "I'll give it a try. So we decided to rent a store for 5,000 yen/month and sell lamps made from bamboo and basket bags woven from natural materials.

I wrote "Wa" (harmony) and "Ai" (love) in Chinese characters on the lamps, which became popular among overseas tourists and sold unexpectedly well.

The owner's son, Wayan, enjoyed this and gradually showed his businessman's blood, and together they built the hotel "kubu sari", and then he built his own hotels one after another, expanding the business.

We are now leading an organization called "kubu group".


Back to the beginning, I tried to renew my contract with a grocery store when my two-year contract was about to expire.

The landlord, however, offered to triple the rent.

Since the store was very popular, the landlord seemed to be watching his step and raised the rent.

In addition, other stores around us copied them and the neighborhood became a lamp shop, and we could not sell any products at all.

Just as I was thinking of quitting, a Balinese friend of mine said to me

Just as I was thinking of quitting, a Balinese friend of mine came to me and said, "I want to send my child to school, can you rent me a rice field? Just as I was about to quit, a Balinese friend of mine asked me if I would rent a rice field to send his child to school.

The price was cheap, so I decided to rent the land for two rice paddies.

However, since we didn't have a lot of money, we couldn't do anything but rent the land.

So I decided to build a gazebo, a hut with just a roof, and plant a lot of plants around it to make it a place to picnic and relax.

I was working in a psychosomatic medicine department at the time, so I thought that if I could relax in a place like this, the patients wouldn't be so stressed that they would need to be hospitalized.

I thought it would be a place where people who are under a lot of stress could slowly regain themselves.

Birdsong, children's voices, the sound of plants swaying in the wind, musical instruments and chanting music coming from the temple.

I named it "ototsumugi" because I imagined that I could weave together various sounds and the voices of my heart

I named it "oototsumugi" because I imagined that I could create a beautiful tapestry.

When I actually built the gazebo and relaxed in it, I felt much better than I imagined.

Then again, I thought to myself

I thought to myself, "If I could sleep here, it would be so much easier not to have to stay in a hotel.


I thought, "I wonder how much it would cost to build a house? I asked a carpenter in the neighborhood about his daily wage with a light heart.

At that time, the carpenter's quoted price was 700 yen per day.

My head spun as I did the math.

As a result, I said, "I don't have any savings, but I can do that! I decided to go back to Japan and work.


After two years of working in Japan, going to Bali to build, working in Japan, going to Bali to build, and so on.

After two years of this cycle, one house was finally built.


After two years, one house was finally built, and then a friend said, "I want to stay here too," so we built another house.

After five years of working in Japan, going to Bali to build a house, working in Japan, going to Bali to build a house, and so on.

After five years of repeating the process of working in Japan, going to Bali to build, working in Japan, going to Bali to build, and so on, three buildings and four rooms were completed.

After five years, we have completed three buildings with four rooms, and we leave the rest to the Balinese to manage.

All the profits are used to employ Balinese people and contribute to the community.

He asked me to do something for his son who was struggling to make ends meet. His son, Wayan, bought a plot of land in Bali called "kubu sari", which Japanese people cannot buy.

We both have families and we don't have children, so he told us to come to Bali and let his children take care of us when we get old.

He told us to come to Bali.

When you give, you get given, and you get given again.

In Bali, when you are kind, kindness comes back to you.

You can be kind without worry, and your kindness will not be exploited.

You don't have to try hard to be someone else, but keep responding to the kindness in front of you.

And choose and express the kindness in you.


I know that there will be many difficult and painful things in your new life.

I am currently working as an aromatherapist at a psychosomatic clinic, so I talk to many people who are in pain.

When you are in pain and can't do anything about it, please go to a kind place and receive kindness to the fullest.


Then, when you feel a little better, grab the small kindness inside of you and don't let it go, even if you have to.

I received a lot of kindness in Bali, and I think I learned a lesson about kindness.


In Balinese legend, Barong, the god of good, and Randa, the god of evil, have an eternal battle that cannot be settled.

It is because of this deeply rooted idea that we have the awareness to choose the goodness within us.

No matter what kind of world we find ourselves in, we should "choose the kindness within us and move forward with a smile. I think.


There is a way to aim for something, but there is also something to be found by choosing daily kindness.

More than halfway through my life, I am thinking about this.


In April, I will begin my work to care for children in need.

Remembering the smiles of the children in Bali, I am going to go forward with a smile again so that I can see many smiling faces.

text and photoprahs - Makiko Kurachi


kubu sari hotelier / ototsumugi representative director

Makiko Kurachi


President of ototsumugi / Owner of "kubu sari" hotel in Ubud, Bali

Owner of "ototsumugi", a traditional Japanese house salon

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STAY SALTY ...... people here


The Power of Enthusiasm


childcare worker / certified psychologist / colorist

4.1 2021

Iroiro asobist Mayumi

My dream is to increase the number of creators in Japan.

For the past 10 years, I've been thinking about what kind of jobs will remain when AI takes over in the future.


For me, I think it will be "creativity" and "hospitality. I think so.


I don't know if I had a global perspective back then, but now I believe that Japanese people have the ability to do so.

It is a fact that Japanese people have a high level of color recognition and are very good at speech and hearing.


There are four seasons in Japan.


That is why it is said that it is because they needed to distinguish the subtle shades.


I think the same thing can be said not only for colors, but also for sounds and words. I think so.

Now I am trying to prove the power of the Japanese in the form of childcare, despite the twists and turns.