Happy New Year to everyone and best wishes in this coming year, a year of moving forward intellectually, spiritually and hopefully financially!
We certainly prayed for all those things at Ikuta Jinja at Hatsumode this year. In years we stay in Japan for New Year’s, our custom is to go to Yasaka-jinja in Kyoto at midnight. The Gion Starbucks is open all night catering to a freezing crowd of fifty thousand or more! This year we were abroad for New Year’s, and when that happens we go to Ikuta Jinja in Kobe.
There appear to be only coins in the giant offering bin but actually there was someone behind the white sheet raking bills out every so often. Despite efforts to remain unnoticed, I could pick him out, sneaking a hand in here and there to scoop cash. Now why would they want to do that …. collecting all the hard cash and leaving the coins behind like that …. ? Ha ha! I’m sure the donations are all going to a very, very useful purpose.
Meanwhile, good luck to Smith’s School of English Franchisees, Coaches and Students in 2014! This is the year to improve.
Martin Werner Zander
Smith’s School of English in Kotoen 月謝制 Real Monthly Tuition English Conversation School