Goodbye Ishida San Part 2 (2009-04-30)his special bento. But before we could enter the building, we had to clean our hands with a wet towelette handed to us by a staff.
After everyone was seated, Ishida-san's son gave a short thank you
speech before the meal commenced. Then we began our lunch by
with a small cup of sake (we all said Kanpai)! The bento was
fairly simple consisting of vegetables and seafood. As the meal
progressed, everyone started to relax. People got up to mill
around the room, socialized with each other, laughed heartily, and some
even started taking pictures of each other. At that point, I felt
like I was in a celebratory event rather than a wake! There was
no gloom and grief that I could sense, as if we weren't mourning the
of Ishida-san, we were celebrating his entry into a second life.
And I'm all for that!
We lingered till about 1pm and started moving into my friend's
apartment around the corner. The "party" continued there and
people relaxed even more. Most people changed out of their formal
clothes, alcohol and drinks were served, the fruit and canned fruit
baskets were taken apart and divvied up for guests to take home (just
like in a Chinese wedding when relatives get leftover food from the
banquet to take home), and most importantly, a shrine was set up for
Ishida-san. His ashes would be displayed for 49 days before it's
I left the apartment just past 2pm with a couple other guests who
had to leave, so I could catch a ride with them in a taxi back to the
station that my friend paid for. I arrived at the funeral
empty-handed (I have no unadorned black handbag that I can use in a
funeral), but I went home with two bags of goodies. (^_^!)
R.I.P. Ishida-san. You will be missed.
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