Language Learning

My New Motto

Moving all over the world as a kid, I left too many friends behind. Heartbreaking! Every time.

Now, I make the most out of wherever I happen to be, right now. My motto: “Wherever you wander, there you are.”

I am at temple 59 in 四国, talking to an excitable monk who gives out free アイスクリーム. He offers to stitch a saying on a タオル and add my motto and photo to his gallery of visitors. We talk a bit more, and I tell him I feel sad I won’t see him again.

That’s when he suggests the perfect motto for me!
I sound it out (“ichigo ichie”) and write it in kana: いちごいちえ

He writes it in kanji (which gives the meaning): 一期一会

It sort of means “once in a lifetime encounter.” I meet people, I connect with them, and then move on—forever. Every connection is special.

As he makes my towel, I write down the other mottos in his gallery that I want to remember. After every answer in this game, I show one!

Ready? がんばって!