Saturday, February 13, 2016

In war and peace from Hiroshima to Home - a memory for Asami Nagayaki

One of my most cherished experiences - my first foreign travel venture outsdie of Trinidad and Tobago - was to Japan through a Fellowship from the Foreign Press Centre of Japan courtesy the Government of Japan. It was a fellowship for journalists from the developing World and I was the only woman and the only person from the Caribbean or from this Hemisphere inCrime was at zero level and the city and streets of Tokyo were absolutely safe for a woman, or for anyone for that matter.
the group  that included journalists from South East Asia and Africa as well.
Preliminary Police notice on discovery with description 
 I pull out this memory with sadness at the fate of young Japanese Pannist  ‪#‎AsamiNagayika‬ who came to ‪#‎TrinidadandTobago‬ for love of our country and the ‪#‎Steelpan‬ recalling that ‪#‎Japan‬ was the first country to invite me in, and open my life up to other journeys ‪#‎LenBoogsieSharpe‬ may remember. The ‪#‎JapaneseGovernment has been an active sponsor of developing many dimensions of our culture and heritage apart from cultural exchanges like these in the spirit of cultural diplomacy and cultural cooperation. It also sponsored our ‪#‎UNESCO‬ workshops for strengthening Trinidad and Tobago's and the ‪#‎Caribbean‬'s ‪#‎CulturalHeritage‬ see my photo album. My heart goes out to your family and country that opened its doors and its heart to me and so many other of our nationals - a couple of whom I met while I was there, as well. Oceans apart, yet Small World. It was not only our oceans that connect us but our culture and our basic existence as human beings in a universal chain of being.
 While there, apart from the theories and insights into the mechan
isms and the operations of Japanese media and society, I also learnt the crafts of origami, the Japanese art of flower arranging and the Japanese Tea Ceremony all of which I practice in some form or the other today. I shared the Japanese reference for nature and the Shinto and Buddhism sense of the oneness in the creation of all of us, whether as small or large island communities as we are.
When I saw the police bulletin announcing that your body was found with a description I shared it with my friends, saying the description would almost fit a description of me. As someone who has often been engaged in foreign communities, there is always the possibility that one may be at some time void of identity because no one recognises you. Anonymity could be a remarkable creative space, or it could be the tragic sphere in which you found yourself.
Post from Asami on returning home to Japan after Carnival 2014
As travellers, we do take a certain degree of risk of being away from home and community and family - if those even in our times and our place could be considered safe harbours - but we also so much rely on the friendliness and goodwill of the country and people to whom, as visitors, as strangers, we entrust our lives. We also take as a given that our country will be there for us as anchors, whether near or in the distance, in case of any storm we may encounter, as yours have been for you.
I am happy that you have met many Trinidadians and Tobagonians and Caribbean people who have bared their souls to you and made you feel, not a stranger, but as a member of our family. If only you can see the outpouring of love from my countryfolks and from yours, despite your brutal and violent death, you will Rest In Peace.

More coming soon GlocalKnowledgePot - global-local connections
 Stay tuned to ‪#‎LiTTscapes‬ ‪#‎Demokrissy‬‪#‎LeavesOfLife‬ ‪#‎GlocalKnowledgePot‬ @krisramp JapanEmbassy Trinidad@lolleaves
Coming Up: In War and Peace From Hiroshima to Home: My 30 year journey through the landscapes of global cultural diplomacy  
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