Who was being kind to whom?
Serendipitously following last month’s post by my friend about kindness around the world, I am indeed on holiday in Canada during this next posting, which I have asked my associate, Cesar Balota, to contribute in my absence. In August, I volunteered for a 2-week mission to provide cheer to lonely displaced survivors still living in temporary housing (kasetsus) all along the Iwate cost. In other words, I was supposed to be a part of the kind party. Yet, things turned out very differently. Oh sure, we did do what was requested of us – including leading sing-alongs, preparing simple Singapore-style meals at mobile cafés, providing material for and guiding interesting craft activities, and even learning to do hand massages for the mostly elderly participants in our daytime programs. But we found ourselves not just witnessing, but being on the receiving end of many kindnesses. The local workers we were meant to be assisting, were so solicitous in making sure that we could active