As some of you know, I have recently ventured out to Asia for a 6 month thrill seeking holiday. Part of my hope while here is to spread the basic principles of karrihour. Japan was my first stop and let me start by saying if I had to give a bracelet to everyone that was kind to me there wouldn’t have been enough. One couple in particular will forever remain my fondest memory of the time spent here. Like many foreigners to Japan, the main goal was to have a sushi feast. On my final day I trekked to Tokyo and found a reasonably priced joint with the sushi go round set up.I began feasting, often referencing the English picture menu to confirm what was being served. The gentlemen sitting next to me noticed my hesitation and offered to order me custom rolls if I had any in mind. He was joined by his wife we began chatting. He asked if I was reporter as I was constantly taking pictures (instagram habits die hard). I took this opportunity to ask which train I should take to get me home and they offered to walk me there following our meals. We continued chatting and when asked what souvenirs I had bought in Japan I replied that all I had were my photographs but I was planning to get some green tea. Again he offered to take me to a grocery store where I could buy some. When it came time to leave, the gentlemen asked the waiter for the bills and had a brief exchange in Japanese, the only word I understood was ‘Canada and immediately I clued in to what was happening- they bought me my dinner. Despite me insisting on contributing, they insisted on treating me. We then walked to the grocery store where they advised me what teas to buy, and then onward to the station to find out what trains to take. Turns out there was an accident on the line I needed and therefore the routes were all being diverted. Without hesitation they told me they would accompany me part way as the trains could be confusing. By this time was feeling incredibly guilty as they had gone more than out of their way for me but also so grateful as there was an obvious language barrier making it difficult to maneuver the city. I had already decided at dinner that this couple would be the first karrihour bracelet recipient but I was nervous to pull it out. As we said our goodbyes I handed them the bracelet and explained the movement, urging them to pay it forward to the next person that returned the kindness they shared with me. He wore the bracelet immediately and in that moment I was filled with an overwhelming amount of pride for Kar, the whole Oksanen/Maclean family, and everyone else that has played a part in karrihour. One person at a time we are keeping your legacy alive. This was only the first stop of many and the hope is that soon some of these international recipients will post as well.

Mr. and Mrs. Tajiri if you are reading this, domo arigato!

Sheena Naidu


  1. Hi Sheena, It’s Judi – I saw your post on FB to visit Karri hour and so here I am reading away. You are a really good writer Sheena and this is a beautiful gesture which shows the good in people – an ongoing reflection of your dear friend Karri. hugs.

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