Welcome to the neighborhood, Hana, Sara, and David! Congratulations, Floyd and Mary! In the picture, three neighbor kids, freckled, blond and Velcro-sneakered, stand beneath the sign they’ve taped to our new mom and dad’s garage door.
Beneath this photo, is one of the three of us; transplants with similar blunt haircuts and coordinating seersucker outfits, sitting in the back of a brown Crown Victoria Station Wagon (later we dubbed her, Miss Vicky). The back seat has been turned down to create a kind of playpen in the rear of the car so that the three of us can sit together. There are toys everywhere. In the photo, I’m pressing a plastic phone the size of my head to my ear, my little brother looks caught, in the lens of the camera and my sister sits, holding a doll in her lap.
Looking at the photo now, I think we look a little stunned, as though we’re suspending our belief, terrified that we could wake-up at any moment to discover that all this–the toys, the smiling, teary adults–are a figment of our imaginations. But when we awake the next morning, the three of us stretched-out on mom and dad’s king-sized bed, it is all still true. (READ the rest of the chapter on my website hanahawley.com
photo by Kelcy Gatson on Unsplash
Head on over to http://www.hanahawley.com to read the latest about Hanako and Jiro’s adventures in Japan. A lot has happened since we caught up with them last. How will these changes impact their relationship? Chapters 22 and 23 are up. Click the link to read.
Hanako and Jiro in Japan
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Photo by Royji Iwata on Unsplash
Why did it sometimes hurt so much to think that everything wasn’t for her? That the story she stepped into wasn’t always her own? Wasn’t it possible that God loved her and her friend equally? She’d always had the sneaking suspicion He played favorites.
Read the rest at hanahawley.com
Photo by Christopher Sardegna via Unsplash
When you’re too old to shop Forever 21 but too young to give-up trendy clothes…
Chapter 14 of Hanako and Jiro’s Adventures in Japan is about aging and kindness. Read the full story at http://www.hanahawley.com
(Excerpt): The fluorescent lights, the pulsing music, the bright yellow bags: all of it for the benefit of the forever twenty-one and under set whose skin miraculously looks brighter under the punishingly harsh lights, whose feet have danced club floors to the music piping through the store’s speakers, and for whom the plastic shopping bags will swing with freedom about their slim legs as they leave the incubator of youth in an hour’s time.
When the older gentleman enters the room, everyone stands and bows deeply. Jiro follows suit, but Mr. Saito quickly reaches for his hand. “It is a pleasure to meet you, Jiro-san,” he says. And there is something at once elegant and sharp about the slender man’s eyes, a hint of humor, at the corners of his mouth that Jiro likes instantly.
Read more about Hanako and Jiro’s adventures in Japan at HanaHawley.com
Photo by Ana Grave for Unsplash
I talk more about my travel to South Korea and my visit to the baby home where I was an orphan, in part two of my story on Sister Theresa on my web (www.hanahawley.com). Read an excerpt below:
Everything I see makes sense, but it feels unreal and intangible. I breathe deeper, open my eyes wider. If I could dig my bare toes into the ground, scrunch the earth between my toes and somehow immerse myself in my surroundings I would. If it wouldn’t be rude, or be weird, I would walk off by myself for an hour or two, sit in the middle of the lawn somewhere, let the past find me.
Photo by Etienne Boulanger