Note: Longtime UNS Member, Sharon Meyers, is currently studying ceramics in Japan for several months. This is a glimpse into her world and journey.
Hein-kyo – or Kyoto – offers a rare mix of an ancient, yet lively, vibrant culture that I find charming as I walk the narrow lanes in my new neighborhood. The small scale makes all seem so approachable and accessible: my 320 square foot apartment is perfectly intentional and comfortable; the local noodle shop has just one long bar for max 5 patrons; and the corner tea & pastry shop displays wagashi confectionary that is almost too beautiful to eat, while the entire tearoom is smaller than my Evanston kitchen. So much change – it feels right and I am ready. Today, my first full day of exploraQon aXer yesterday’s move in, gives me pause for
thought in reflecting upon the Kanji character for change. It expresses so well the start of my time in this space, this place and this new year.
Japan’s imperial capital for more than 1,000 years, Kyoto developed a culture of its own that remains singular in this country, including its history of four deities of divine protection. The studio of my ceramic studies is located in the western part of the city under the protecQon of the sacred White Tiger – hence the title “White Tiger Tales” of this weekly blog, sent to you as a newsletter, where I hope to share this special experience of living and learning, and learning through living, here in Kyoto.