About Me  

I'm joining Service Space because ... I have been and continue to be inspired by the joy found in folks who give from their hearts, who do just because they love....there is big love and big hearts within/amongst those connected with servicespace!

A good day to me is when ... there is a lot of laughter from the belly

My hero in life is ...my grandmother, Mutsuko

My favorite book is ...the little prince

One thing I'm grateful for is ... my health, my friendships, my curiosity...(I know I know, one thing, but actually this could amount to a long page a day :-)

A Prayer Bag At Gun Point

Nov 01, 2020, 2 comments, 7 smiles Recently, while reading ArunDada's story in a "Sacred Space" Pod last month, I was reminded of an experience I had in 2010 -- ten years ago. (Amazing because it doesn't feel so long ago.) I had spent the day with my favorite Buddhist nun, Jun anjusan -- a woman who has walked all over the world for peace -- starting in 1978 when she walked across the USA. I have had the honor of walking with her in Japan and to sacred burial sites as well as nuclear testing sites in California. She is one of the most humble teachers I know with the strength and clarity of a cheetah; her voice is almost tiny but can move mountains. One day after a long day of fasting and prayer on the UC Berkeley campus near the Anthropology Department where Native American bones were being held, Jun anjusan and I were ... Read Full Story

Leading With Kindness

Mar 05, 2020, 3 comments, 9 smiles I haven't written much in a while - not since my grandmother died really -thought I'd write a little today. Wanting to bring back again stories of kindness that I was able to share when she was alive. Feeling a little rusty. Thank you for your understanding. Enjoy..... Went to the doctor yesterday - for the first time since just before she died and that was with her. This was my first time at this hospital and with this doctor for a check up. I was unsure of where to go or what to do. I decided to lead with kindness gratitude and humility. I asked the first person I saw, as I was walking out of the parking lot, if they could point me in the right direction. It turned out it was only her second day working there. We both laughed at the irony. She pointed me towards the main ... Read Full Story

Grandma Chronicles Aka Elder Wisdom ~ John: ...

Aug 19, 2019, 2 comments, 19 smiles Grandma Chronicles aka Elder Wisdom ~ John: How did you become such a happy person? Obaachan: I am happy because I don't have much time before I die. Me: You mean, so why be sad? (as in- no time for sadness) Obaachan: Yes. ... I don't hate no one. NO ONE. I have no hate. I have good friends. You are my good friends. I have good children too - Irene, Gracie, Joann, Larry and Bobby. Me: Gracie is my mom :) Obaachan: Really? Me: I'm your grand-daughter :) Obaachan: You are?! Oh, how nice! Me: Would you like to call Gracie? Obaachan: Okay! Me: Hi Mom! John: Hi Grace! Obaachan: Gracie! Where are you? Come and visit! Grace: I will soon :) Obaachan: Be good okay? Be nice to people, forever okay? Grace: Okay, I will. Forever :) Mia: Okay, Mom, we love you! John: Love you, Grace! Obaachan: We looooove you! We won't forget you. Grace: I love you all too :) There was more but this was the heart of the conversation - "The heart of the matter" -#lovematters ðŸ’ž    

Bound By Love Not Labels

Jul 27, 2019, 3 comments, 9 smiles Last night, when I went to see my grandmother, she was sitting alone at the nurses station with her word search book (for those of you who don’t know – when my grandmother came to live here over 5 years ago, I tried many things to keep her occupied – painting, magazines, crossword, music, coloring, mazes…but it was only her word search book that kept her interest…the one thing her mind could follow – she began to think of it as her job; it kept her from wandering – over these 5 years, I have gotten her the same BIG EASY WORDSEARCH book at least 17 times… each one has 100 puzzles and she does them all. Recently coloring simple pictures like fishes has gotten her attention too)….. SO my grandmother was sitting at the desk with her book but no pencil just staring at the letters as if she was ... Read Full Story

Being With The Other; Moving Towards Wholeness

Jun 19, 2019, 1 comments, 21 smiles I love this quote by Rumi – “Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and right doing there is a field. I'll meet you there” --- I am always interested in places of commonality. When I was asked to attend the “Hands Head Heart” retreat in Banyan Grove recently on “Being with the Other” – I thought, is “other” the right side or the wrong? And, how does the field in between hold the “others?” Is it a mutually agreed up space? Is it one that is built over time as in a bridge? I am not sure but I am interested in the questions and especially happy to be invited to this particular exploration. Saying YES to the invite was an easy decision. Of course truth be told, I am pretty much unable to say NO to any requests of Audrey, Nipun or any of his family for that matter. When someone ... Read Full Story

Just Back From A Produce Market ...

Dec 07, 2017, 8 smiles Just back from a produce market shopping spree ( a small market with a reputation for some aggressive behavior). The last time I was at a produce market, I was sensitive to what “wasn’t working” so today, I focused my attention on what was. One of the clerks remembered me and stopped to ask how I was doing. A woman helped me with my basket, while another smiled at me and remarked about the weather. On my way out, an elderly gentleman laughed at my bushel of kale (he did not know about my pet snail's tortoise appetite lol ) we shared smiles and small chitchat and then he wished me a lovely day. Consciously focusing on the good seems to bring out more good - What a beautiful thing. 😊❤️

First, I Want To Send Gratitude ...

Dec 05, 2017, 1 comments, 16 smiles First, I want to send Gratitude to Service Space and all the selfless volunteers who keep all the projects going - Thank you all for all you do. I was contacted a few days ago via fb messenger by a daughter of an old friend. I met this young woman when she was a little girl 30 years ago - her mother and I worked together and became close friends; I was like an auntie to her and her brother. I moved out of the state and many many years have passed; still, we share a forever love though we rarely speak or see one another. Today, I was able to talk to my friend's daughter who wanted to tell me that her mother was diagnosed with stage 4 cancer and was entering hospice. Hospice can last for years, one never knows...the thing that bothered my young friend besides of ... Read Full Story

Heart Connections

Nov 29, 2017, 4 comments, 15 smiles Yesterday after spending a beautiful day with a dear friend, I stopped at Berkeley Bowl (a sort of co-opy, less expensive, more laid back Whole foods) to pick up some produce... I noticed people walking by each other, no one making eye contact; if they were in a couple, they seemed to pretend they were alone - no one saying excuse me, hello or goodbye. I too, walking without disturbing the air, calling upon actor movement exercises like suzuki and viewpoints to move throughout without touching. Afraid to bring about conflict; afraid to connect for fear of...of what I do not know. The world at large just feels less friendly. I have learned not to take it personally I suppose - feeling less sad (it is grocery shopping and not a social event after all) and more accepting - this is where we are now. I still say thank you, ... Read Full Story

When Someone Threw Coffee On My Face

Oct 23, 2017, 22 comments, 47 smiles Tonight, I went to see a play by, and full with, women I consider fierce. En route, a car seemed to purposely cut me off, almost causing me to hit it. I was a bit in shock and angry both. I turned my bright lights on him and I drove right behind him. At the next stop light, I pulled up beside him. He was angry, and seemed to shout profanities at me. I rolled down my window and said, "Really? You're mad at me when YOU cut me off?!" He retorted, "YES!" And then threw what I think was his coffee grande (with cream) in my face! It covered my face, my car and my steering wheel. Thankfully, it was cold. I didn't know what to do but I was angry and tired and not feeling 100%, so I followed behind him with my bright lights on. I called 911 to report an assault by ... Read Full Story

This Came In My Email Today ...

Sep 22, 2017, 8 comments, 15 smiles This came in my email today - beautiful and stunning- uplifting as tears flow. Subject: Volunteers from Japan to help in CDMX Earthquake. From a friend - Arrived into Mexico City airport this afternoon and in the baggage claim a huge team of Japanese rescuers all in orange jumpsuits, serious and determined, ready to get to work, with their mounds of equipment, and the most moving moment, forgive me for crying, when one Mexican man began clapping and wordlessly the entire airport area joined in slow rhythms and all one could hear was the sound of human hands in solidarity and with profound gratitude for this human to human gift, clapping in unison for 5 minutes. And the Japanese men bowed their heads. Profound beyond words.