United Nations International Day of Peace 21 September

This post isn't really about peace or how we could achieve it. I tried writing that one but it was very cliched. I kept coming back to paper cranes, so here we are.

Peace is inextricably linked to origami cranes and the story of Sadako Sasaki in my head. She was very young when Hiroshima was bombed, and she died very young from leukemia. There is a Japanese legend that whoever folds 1000 paper cranes will be granted a wish. In the book Sadako did not manage to fold 1000 paper cranes so her friends completed the task. One year I was in charge of teaching a bunch of Brownies how to fold an origami crane as part of remembering Hiroshima and Nagasaki. (Brownie meetings have themes.) I got sick. Was I excused from my teaching task? No. Picture me on the day, hopped up on decongestants, pain killers, and antibiotics, probably floating 30cms above the floor, unable to raise my voice above a whisper, teaching excitable girls the intricate art of folding a paper crane. I had a 'translator', in the form of one of the other leaders, translating my whisper into instructions. Honestly, I don't remember much about that afternoon.??

I think they're linked in my mind because when I went to school, August 6 was a day to remember the people who were affected by the bombs. It was also focussed on peace and ending war. Save the Children (NZ) have a nice definition of what peace looks like to them. "[we] work with children in situations where peace could mean better health, fair working conditions, protection from domestic violence, safe schooling or a way to have their own voices heard. Peace is vital…" I hope they can achieve it.

Random fact: Japanese astronaut applicants are tasked with folding 1000 paper cranes in their?? process.



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