marius 5.1 you are here: pantha rhei: literature: golden
all sections at this site: more about marius - contact and links - pantha rhei - travels
back to pantha rhei: literature: overview
golden memoires of a geisha - arthur golden
a lovely novel that will learn you a great deal of a world probably unknown to most of us:
the geisha in japan
special is the historical flavour..

i loved this quote (p. 157):

we made our way up the street with nearly everyone we passed saying something to mameha, or at the least bowing to her, and then afterward giving me a little nod or bow as well
several times i stopped to bow back, with the result that i fell a step or two behind mameha
she could see the difficulty i was having, and took me to a quiet alleyway to show me the proper way of walking
my trouble, she explained, was that i hadn't learned to move the upper half of my body independently of my lower half
when i needed to bow to someone, i stopped my feet
"slowing the feet is a way of showing respect," she said
"the more you slow up, the greater the respect
you might stop altogether to bow to one of your teachers, but for someone else, don't slow more than you need to, for heaven's sake, or you'll never get anywhere
go along at a constant pace when you can, taking little steps to keep the bottom of your kimono fluttering
when a woman walks, she should give the impression of waves rippling over a sandbar"
i practiced walking up and down the alley as mameha has described, looking straight toward my feet to see if my kimono fluttered as it should
when mameha was satisfied, we set out again