You would think that bringing to Japan one of my bags, made entirely of traditional Japanese patterns like the wonderful large wave or seigaiha pattern on the front flap–repeated many times over on our Tokyo hotel’s elevator doors for example, would be superfluous, like bringing coals…., but I have never had such an enthusiastic response. We were first checking out a department store in Osaka and wandered into one department where we attempted to communicate with a saleswoman about the various kimonos. At one point she pointed admiringly at my bag and when I indicated to her that I had made it myself, she clapped appreciatively. The same response–with variations–came from a Ryokan matron, a taxi driver, a museum shop salesgirl, and various and sundry other folks.
Those Japanese have such good taste.