Sunday, February 21, 2016


Looks like Rikumo has been around for a while, in Calowhill, and I just haven't known about it. Well, now I do! So it counts as new. Right?

Anyway, seeing Rikumo has happened at an opportune time for inspiration. I haven't pursued any of my Japanese studies in years, at this point, for various life reasons, but very recently I've been missing it intensely and have wanted to start again. I even have had the same fantasy I have every year, to take the JLPT, at whatever level seems feasible. My apartment has a decent layout for a chashitsu, even with machiai and mizuya.... Hmm....

What I really miss is studying the language, especially poetry and shodou. I have blog drafts from 2013 and 2014 about verb forms and tanka. Sometimes I practice shodou on cheap paper, but I always feel it's just not good enough; as with the language, I can imitate, but never seem to get the nuances. Some studies really do require a highly skilled teacher. But, however much remedial practice it may need, my brush shall rise again!


On my way home from brunch today, I passed a new store (Walnut between 12th and 13th, south side) called Rikumo. I had time only to press my face against the glass, and make a note to visit later, but it looks like a world of wonders—including actual dougu! Even in the window, chasen, chashaku, and what looked like a bowl for koicha, and in the distance I could see tetsubin. Who thought we'd have a store in Center City that sold tetsubin? I don't know how long it's-a-been there (はは), but I'll be thrilled if it can find a steady customer base at that location and will continue with events &c. (The online presence looks great, too, though of course it's better to see things in person, especially when they're ceremonially meaningful.) I'd love to hear what chanoyu fans think of what's available, especially the matcha (Ippodo, Kannoshiro; at the Ippodo site you can even search by Tea discipline). I didn't see tatami or shodou supplies, but hey. 仕方が無いね. We'll always have the good people at Awesome Art Supply.