Hearts Influencing Forever

A gift arrived from Japan last year from Jaq.

Distilling Devastation

Distilling Devastation

The gift raises money for housing children who lost both parents on March 11, 2011 – the day of Japan’s devastating earthquake/tsunami.

My friend, Jaq, co-created the gift and its concept.  I was thrilled to receive it.  What is it?  Peek here:  Out of Japan’s Tsunami… the post simulates opening the parcel yourself.

I found Jaq in the blogosphere.  The blog’s name  – Jinkspots – fired my curiosity.  I wrote asking about the origin of the name.  Our friendship began and I learned she was from England, had married a Japanese man and had two beautiful children.  Jaq and Kuri wanted their daughter and son to experience the Japanese culture, as well, so ended up making their new home in Japan about 300 miles south much before the Tsunami’s rage.

Having legitimate concerns over the misinformation regarding the cracked and broken nuclear plants, Jaq and Kuri decided to move “as far opposite” the nuclear site as possible.

They moved to a northwest location and began their new life.  As Kuri began building his field of work, Jaq began baking brownies and chocolate cakes to supplement the family income.  In our emails, she expressed her commitment to finding and presenting healthy food and healthy living for her family.

Jaq and I deepened our connection further through Face Book where she posted a variety of “foodie” photos and validated her dedication to organic, safe and delicious family fare.

Meanwhile, back here on West Coast of Canada a few years ago, I learned about a man named Jim who was offering “raw food” dining out of his home location.  A friend and I attended one of his courses where we saw how to prepare a good mix of wholesome and healthy plant-based dishes.

Jim told us he was a prostate cancer survivor who was determined to turn his health around with plant-based eating.  As he instructed us with joy and enthusiasm, I decided his vibrant energy and welcoming personality underscored his successful plan for good health.

At this course, Jim used basic kitchen tools to prepare a raw food meal that was the most delicious, entire meal I have encountered.  I’ve eaten meals interlaced with exquisite raw food or plant-based dishes, but this was a whole meal – all plant-based – from appies to dessert.

Apart from the whole taste experience, I had a unique and unexpected sensation.  I felt “thanks” from my body.   (Try taking that to medical science as a testimonial for healing.)

Jim began serving meals once a week in his tiny dining room built on the property.  He a catered meals and served them on site.  I was happy to learn Jim was teaching Raw Food classes in Japan.  I was even happier when Japanese chefs came here to take Jim’s course in his own kitchen.

Inevitably, Jim and his wife, Chris, were encouraged to open “Rawsome” – a plant-based restaurant in the heart of our village.  It was a risky move because specialty food outlets on an island means operating from a small economic base –

Jim and one of his helpers in the doorway of "Rawsome".

Jim and a customer in the doorway of “Rawsome”.


especially outside of tourist season.  Healthy eating is individual and the public still needs an education about the benefits of “raw”, never mind about its deliciousness.  Therefore, after several months, Jim and Chris found they needed to close the restaurant.  They headed over to Europe and Asia where they sampled international versions of “raw”.

Returning to the island, Jim has kept his plant-based lifestyle and profile.  I recently discovered, in their Rawsome on the Road blog, their plans to offer several courses in Japan this Fall.  I immediately thought of Jaq.  I sent her the blog’s link so she could read about Jim’s courses.

It turns out Jim’s going to offer one in the city closest to Jaq.  I wrote him asking about the cost of the course and explained my friend in Japan may want to attend. I hoped I could swing the cost for her registration.

Look at the response I received:

Jim Maurice 11:19am

“I don’ t think you need to swing it. She comes as our guest. No charge. Let me know what city she is from and give her our email : rawsomelivingfoods@gmail.com”

I immediately sent this huge surprise to Jaq.  Her response:

“…  What a wonderful message to wake up to. Of course I would love to go! I read their blog update – it sounds so fascinating.  I know that some of my friends have been going to raw food workshops. It’s definitely a hot topic here right now. What a treat!”

When hearts open, hearts respond!   Jim couldn’t have validated his heart’s contents any more profoundly.  His generosity will spread profoundly into untold numbers of lives.

I can only hope to meet his loving kindness with a modicum of equity by ordering from his delicious repertoire of health before he’s off to teach my friend Jaq in Japan.

12 thoughts on “Hearts Influencing Forever

  1. Hi Amy,

    This is a lovely story of building connections and carrying them far! It is so heartening to note that such benevolence exists around us! Those emails you have quoted exemplify that love lies at the core of our hearts…we just have to look within to discover it.
    Thanks for sharing!

    • Yes, it is heartening, Balroop. And the gift seems doubled when it’s so completely unexpected. About the love that lies at the core of our hearts…I wonder how we can get the leaders of countries to harken to that fact. Will they ever be still and LISTEN to their tiny inner voices? Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could observe them the day that truth dawns?

  2. Oh Amy! It was such a lovely email to wake up to. I was excited to think I may be able to meet your friends, plus I’m passionate about food and healthy eating so they sounded extra-specially interesting. To actually be invited to Jim and Chris’s seminar as a guest… I’m not quite sure what I’ve done to deserve this but I feel exhilarated at the opportunity to learn and share and as always with you, the timing is impeccable. My cake and catering business is growing – today we just signed another outlet – and I’ve been considering our next move. Raw food is something I first heard about only recently, when some friends of mine attended a workshop which they raved about. I was already interested when your email arrived. The tiny little seed to start all this that landed in your fertile heart may yet grow to become something none of us expected. I can see doors opening all over the place! With all my heart Amy – thank you. And thank you for being so brave and for sharing this story with others too. I’m looking forward to doing the same.

    Rawsome on the Road arrives in my city, Fukuoka, on 17th September. So no doubt I’ll be sending you a picture of me eating something healthy and delicious with Jim and Chris soon!

    Big love to my beautiful friend
    and to the wonderful, supportive community you are nurturing here.


    • Your description of timing just validates it was to meant to happen and NOW, Jaq. How I would love to be a fly on the wall. I put a big heart on my Sept 17 Calendar: Japan! Then…I get to look forward to choosing a goodie when Jim and Chris are back in October. October is a month of anniversaries – deathaversaries, actually. Three big ones. As much as I believe “it won’t affect me this year”, it gets emotional. So it’s good having a wholesome treat to anticipate.

      Boy oh boy – the tentacles of goodness – the fruits of gratitude.

  3. Reblogged this on Jinkspots and commented:
    Something wonderful landed in my lap the other day – an invitation to a Raw Food seminar in September. This is the story of how it all happened. With big thanks and love to the beautiful Amy x

  4. I love these amazing internet connections….this is a lovely story. My granddaughter is into raw foods in a very big way and she makes the most DELICIOUS food, a symphony of taste sensations…cool post. And your banner photo is sublime.

    • Thanks Sherry. It’s good hearing about younger people being into raw, plant-based food. It IS awesome…it sounds silly but I sense my body being so grateful when I’m eating raw. And with all the great local produce, well…we have so much abundance, don’t we, fellow B.C.er?

      Yep…I thank Gail every time I open my blog. When I asked her permission to use it, she said, “Do you want me to take my name off it?” NO! Funny how creative people can be so willing to be in the shadow. So thanks for appreciating her work!

  5. I am so excited for Jim and Chris, hope their plans go wonderfully and I know your friend will be blessed by meeting them. I know they have a spot in my heart as you do. It was so exciting to be with all of you.

    • Was thinking of you this morning, Dee. As I watered, I counted 12 gorgeous tangerine roses on the little bush you sent in that arrangement for my birthday. The deer pulverize the bush in the spring, chomping down on all the new growth. It doesn’t have much chance to grow tall, but it’s a prolific little plant once it has a chance. It’ll be producing blooms like mad now that fall is coming and the deer have gone into hiding – the summer population becomes too much for them.

      Hope you continue to do well – let’s face it…that rawsome meal that Jim served you must have boosted your good genes considerably! 😀

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