On February 15, 2015, we had our Shinnenkai (New Year’s Celebration) at the Fairfield Community Center in Fairfield. Since the facility seats over 300, I estimated that there were about 350-400 present because there were people standing, many performers were on stage, and healthy children were running around in the park outside. In-coming Vice Presidents Matt Matayoshi and Yasutomi Makishi, Geinobucho Kinuko Mototake, Treasurer Juli Kodani, and Secretary Julie Beal were busy with many tasks to keep the big event running smoothly. In all the excitement, I looked out into the crowd at people greeting each other and enjoying each other’s company – chimu stringing past, present, and future together like a Hawaiian flower lei or an Okinawan nuchibana. I saw the performances on stage and saw chimu emanating from the performers. It was like sunlight in the early morning!
As I recall the scene, I realized that being President of our Knenjin Kai is an honor and pleasure and that the energy and warmth of chimu is our greatest treasure. I am so appreciative of everyone who gave up time and traveled great distances to help and participate. I am touched that people worked hard to cooperate and collaborate with each other. I myself will strive harder to do the same.
As the sun rises every morning, so do I hope that we constantly refresh our chimu. Let us always remember to cherish our time together and be brilliant in our performances as we did at the New Years Party. Let us put aside our differences and disagreements long enough to enjoy ourselves and each other.