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No one's an island

There is an old cliché that goes, no man is an island. Of course, this applies to women as well. People need people, even if the person is a misanthropic grump who professes to hate humans, the truth is that hatred usually comes from an unrequited longing to be accepted by someone. By the time the person has reached the stage of being a curmudgeon, they have abandoned all hope of acceptance and vowed hatred instead. There are exceptions of course. Some people are just not happy in the company of others. I think a purely misanthropic person is a rare psychological state. The vast majority want to be part of a community. I certainly do. I need people. I need a place of belonging where I am accepted and welcomed as myself. When I first came to Japan, I found that in the community of misfit artists, poets, musicians, and assorted strangelings who had become my circle of friends. Most of them have gone back to their home countries or they have left this planet in search of other worlds in the afterlife. In the place where I lived, Kawasaki, I was an island. The apartment complex had at least 50 units but I did not know a single person there. I once walked into the downstairs apartment by accident, thinking it was my own. That did not help my case. After a few years I moved to a small, somewhat hippie town by the sea and found my community. Oddly enough, it was the same sort of community I lost touch with before, artists, rouges and interesting characters. Every so often, there is a community gathering where folks share their music and handmade crafts. It feels comfortable. I mean, there is still the whole language barrier and "oh my god a foreigner" wall that will always be there, but, there are also welcoming smiles and a connection through our mutual desire to create stuff. That’s the kind of place I like to call my home away from home.


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