We have encountered countless examples of hospitality in this country. Invariably gracious and always accompanied by delicious snacks and meals. Two examples pictured here are our Komatsuka hosts Shigeko-san and Akio-san, but another incredible hostess must also be mentioned. She is Kenji-san's sister Etsuko-san who invited the Okano's, another Okano-sensei and ourselves on November 23, 2012 for "omochi" or pounded rice lunch. She teaches cooking and Kenji-san says she enjoys hosting guests and it seems she never sits still enough to have her photograph taken, but we managed to capture her.
Kenji-san entertained some of us be performIng 'magic'. He took soybeans that had been well soaked and converted them to fresh tofu and a residue that can be used to make 'vegi' burgers.
The guest Okano-sensei who we met for the first time is another incredible person. He is an avid fisherman and makes lures from shells. This skill evolved into the creation of shell jewelry which we were able to see at 'Cloud Nine' in Tsukuba City. He is a horticulture expert like Kenji-san. He enjoys horseback riding and does dancing/acting on stage dramatizing traditional Japanese tales.
Click on link to see photographs on Picasa.