Today I really took notice of a bit of interesting culture that has gradually and naturally worked its way into our lobby here at Smith’s School of English Kyobashi. For at least as long as I’ve been here there has been a rather cute bear sitting in a basket perched ontop of the counter in our lounge area. I’ve been told that we received the bear as a present from a student long ago and he has been on proud display ever since.
We just finished up the Holiday season here and, as we often do, planned and held a Christmas party for our students here at the school. This is a fun event run free of charge, although last years (2007) theme was a bit of a pot-luck. Students really enjoyed not only seeing what all the other students and teachers brought to pass, but enjoyed seeing others try their food as well. Great night.
Well through some combination of all the talk about bringing food and giving gifts, our bear in the lobby became the official mascot of the menu for the party. I had heard it joked about before that “the bear is hungry” but didn’t think much of it.
However, over the last month the strangest thing has been happening. Sometimes i would come into the office or return from my lunch break and the bear would be holding chocolates! I thought it was a joke the first time I noticed, but then it happened again a few days later, and again after that. Now today, while making a hot tea for a student, out of the corner of my eye, I spied another student carefully placing a gorgeous foreign chocolate in the bears lap. It’s like a secret Santa that goes year round!
So now I now I know to check our bear for chocolate presents whenever I come into the school. It’s really great that our students care enough to share treats with us and it’s super cute that it’s developing into a little custom specific to our school.
Thank you for all the treats!