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Ok, so please sit down and get a tea (so British, I know) and a snack because this story is about to get long (and exciting).
So it all started as a mission to find a piece by Ogata Korin in Japan. Pretty much all his works are national treasures and lots are owned by private owners, so to say the least, they’re a bit of a pain to hunt down. BUT I found out that there was a piece, ‘Red and White Plum Blossoms’, in a small sea side town near Tokyo called Atami and I was so ready to go and see it!
So we headed off early in the morning, excited as I was to board my first day trip (from what I can remember) in Japan! An hour and a half later, we arrived in Atami – the sun blazing on us with a slight breeze flowing through our hair (but it wasn’t actually as glamorous as that because I was sweating like a mofo).
Skipping to the number 8 bus stop (not really, but excitement levels were high) I saw a woman putting up a notice.
The skipping stopped.
NO. NO. NO.
‘The Museum Of Atami is shut today.’
My heart dropped. I was speechless and couldn’t quite fathom what to do.
We walked around the town for a while trying to lift our spirits before coming back home.
Anyway, long story short, it wasn’t even on show anyway since they only show it once a year so I guess it was good that we didn’t go all the way to the museum to be double disappointed!
Now the actual story will begin, because that was a bit of a pre story – ya know, just to prepare you.
A few days later, I found out that there was another piece by Korin in the Nezu Museum in Tokyo, which isn’t too far so I had to snap up the opportunity to go!
The museum is slightly out of the way, about 15 minutes from Omotesando, but it is so worth going as it is so beautiful!
Can we just talk about how beautiful the gardens are? Seriously! It was like a maze and I was overwhelmed by how amazing nature is. I felt so inspired to be there in the calm tranquility.
Wait, time to backtrack slightly. We got there and I was ready to see the piece.
You’re not showing it?
It’s only shown for two weeks in February?
I actually can’t believed this happened again. How? HOW?!
I guess it’s just my luck, but I decided to take a quick look around the museum anyway.
I walked into the small and dark exhibition room, the spotlights glisteneing on the gold screens and tiny, intricately painted boxes.
As I walked around looking at the wonderful pieces, there was one thing I had to take a double take on.
One more look, don’t be obvious, I told myself.
I actually couldn’t believe who was in the same room as me.
Tom. Cruise. No body guards. Just him, and his guide.
As if Tom Cruise would casually just be in this kind of unknown museum looking at the same exhibition as me. WHAT?!
I had to take a breather and look at another piece of art. This was it. I had to talk to him. I mean, it’s not everyday that you meet Tom Cruise.
He walked closer, taking close inspection to the pieces.
I did it. I made conversation. We literally talked about our love for art and I couldn’t quite believe what was happening.
That was amazing! He was so friendly!
I carried on seeing the exhibition and went upstairs to the next rooms.
Woah, he just made conversation with me. Another conversation about art. This was preeetty mental.
I actually can’t believed this happened though. I guess everything happens for a reason and one thing I learnt from this was be courageous and pluck up the courage to do something that you may never be able to do again.
All the best experiences come from doing something you’re scared of.