About ten days ago I was walking along when a little Japanese boy walked up and asked if he could interview me. This sort of thing had already happened to me several times in Japan, so I knew what was going to happen. Japanese kids across the country are gathering data from foreigners, I assume for either an innocent school project or nefarious government monitoring, asking basic questions like where people are from and why they came to Japan. I answered his questions, but at the end something different happened that had not happened before that time, and has not been repeated since. He gave me a small origami crane as a token gift for helping him complete his task. It’s not a particularly special origami crane, but today I realized that I’ve been carrying it around with me ever since that day. By all measures I ought to leave it behind somewhere, or just dispose of it. For whatever reason, I’ve kept it with me and can’t bring myself to trash the little thing.

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