I must happily state that Ayame’s tea ceremony was a resounding success. The other guests and myself enjoyed the experience thoroughly. It was both informative and relaxing. As Ayame had explained to me previously, the guests were two members of The Raptorfang Clan, the lovely woman from the community center, her guard and myself.
Kira, the matron of the Raptor Fang Clan was the guest of honor for the evening. She performed her duties as asked without fail. She and Thya, a member of her clan, both came dressed in yukatas in honor of the event. I greatly applaud their efforts. Kira also did quite well in directing conversation as would be the custom in the school of tea ceremony in which I have personally participated in Kugane.
I feel as though I participated more as would be expected as opposed to taking a more enthusiastic approach. However the subtle differences in Ayame’s version of the tea ceremony as opposed to what I would practice in Kugane were enough that I admit I may have focused a bit more on the performance on the ceremony than on the serenity it is meant to instill upon the participants.
I can however say that the ceremony left me with a welcome sense of calm that I have not felt in sometime. One I would say I have not felt since I decided to make this journey. As I left however I felt eyes upon me which was slightly unsettling, but as I was wearing a Kimono in Eorzea I can only imagine it would attract attention.
I was rather interested to find out a bit more about the large Raen, Kamui Akagane. There may be more than meets the eye to this stoic giant but he seems to take great pains to stand as a bit of a buffer for Imadyn and I would very much like to learn more of their partnership. Granted I may never do so as I do not know if I might have an opportunity to speak further with himself or Imadyn. I will however endeavor to do so in the future.
Speaking of Imadyn, she arrived in a full suit in an immaculate white. It was quite the contrast with her dark complexion and it suited her well. Hopefully at some juncture I will be able to speak with her when she is more at ease and or in a situation where she is more comfortable. I can only imagine that the event was quite stressful for her. I do hope however that Ayame and myself succeeded in making her feel at least a bit more at ease.
One of the philosophies of the tea ceremony is to act in utmost consideration toward one’s guests. Which I believe Ayame accomplished quite well. She explained the events of the tea ceremony and what was involved to the esteemed Eorzean guests. She offered the use of well loved utensils and bowls for the event, and the room was prepared in the traditional fashion.
I believe Akagane-san was quite surprised to discover that Eorzeans are actually quite fascinated by the traditions, ways and fashions of the east. Enough so that I might savor a taste of home in a bowl of ramen or a well prepared cup of tea. I have found Eorzea to be a fascinating melting pot of sorts where the cultures, traditions and products of other lands all coalesce into a vibrant and colorful landscape.
To compare the two lifestyles to art, life in Kugane is a well structured and orderly painting, perfect in it’s color and measured in it’s strokes. Life in Eorzea on the other hand is much less orderly, the colors vary greatly between bright hues and somber undertones, the brush strokes range from undisciplined to precise. Yet somehow a brilliant image forms from the chaos creating a rich example of the life of man.
It is absolutely fascinating. I can say that with all of the locations to which I have had the great fortune to visit, Eorzea may be the most disorganized, but it is also the most vibrant.
I am eternally grateful to Ayame for just such an opportunity. To remind myself of whence I came, that I might remember why I left the shores of Hingashi. Though with such comradery and amenities in Eorzea I fear I may not wish to reside in Kugane once more. Whilst I feel a bit torn those are decisions to make at a future juncture.
As is the same with the tea ceremony I must prepare for the future, but live in the present.