Akemashite omedeto gozaimasu (“Happy New Year”) to everyone. According to the Chinese Zodiac, with followers in Japan and other countries, the year of 2013 is the Year of the Snake. I did some internet research on predictions for the Year of the Snake. The dire “fiscal cliff” warnings for 2013 coming from the United States are disconcertingly similar to Year of the Snake predictions I found on the internet. This particular year is the Year of the Water Snake. Such a year traditionally brings many challenges and disasters. As a result, we are encouraged to stay alert this year. Those who do best in the Year of the Water Snake are the ones who are able to navigate tricky waters. We are encouraged to work with others to help navigate those tricky waters. I call on all members of the community to work together to help navigate the rough waters ahead in 2013.
I am grateful to my fellow Board members and all supportive members of the GVJCCA who continue to work together to help strengthen our community. Donations from our members, revenue from our advertisers, and the receipt of membership dues allow the GVJCCA to provide programs and publish the newly expanded monthly Bulletin/Geppo. Please continue with your support for the GVJCCA in as many ways as possible. Annual membership dues are critical to the well being of the GVJCCA and to our publication of the Bulletin/Geppo, a journal that deserves its reputation of excellence. Please keep your memberships up-to-date.
The first New Year’s community activity I look forward to attending is the 2013 Nikkei Community New Year’s Party held at the Nikkei Centre on Sunday, January 13, 2013. Doors open at 5:00pm. The Organizing Committee consists of the GVJCCA, Nikkei National Museum & Cultural Centre, and the Nikkei Seniors Health Care & Housing Society.
The second New Year’s community activity I look forward to attending is the annual Keirokai event. It will also be held at the Nikkei Centre. It takes place on Saturday, January 19th between 12noon and 3pm. The event recognizes the contributions to the community made by those 70 years and older. Great food and entertainment will be provided. Once again I will be challenged to perform tricky callisthenics manoeuvres conducted by that charming lady from Tonari Gumi. Once again I can count on being outperformed by the seniors in attendance.
I started this message with reference to the Chinese Zodiac Year of the Snake. The predictions for the Year of the Snake are not upbeat ones. I want to end my message with a more upbeat report, also emanating from China. I am preparing this message on January 4, 2013. A Chinese friend told me this is an extremely auspicious day. When one looks at the date 2013/1/4 and takes the liberty to write and pronounce it in certain Chinese characters (“ai ni yi sheng yi shi”), it means “I love you forever.” Besides being the name of a wonderful children’s book written by Robert Munsch, this is a great message to all those special people in our lives.
Gary Matson, President, GVJCCA