…but rather late nights and early mornings.

The past few days I’ve had a horrible time sleeping. Up at 5:30am each morning…anxious and crabby. Today that has started to subside and I only woke up from the frantic yelling of my name – it was 9am, and C was on the phone.

Everything from getting use to staying in another’s house, finding an internet connection, and having my freedom limited has taken a lot of my energy. That is on top of the usual duties of the two-day conference speeches, presentations, introductions, and dinners that we’ve been doing. Everything has been amazing and over the top and generous and delicious…but coupled with a cranky me.

There is a very large part of all of us that is very happy to have the conference finished – and on to the more individual reasons why we all chose to come.

For me – these past few days have brought up a few conversations of Japanese ‘zaidan’ (foundations) – particularly since the Rotary Foundation has been in charge of much of these events. I only have time for a few quick thoughts, but – folks in RI here are extremely well off. The place I’m staying has seven bedrooms. And others homes have amazing gardens and more than one ‘bath’ room, which is very very unusual for Japan. In speaking with one of the men, we had a great conversation over the difference between giving ‘money’ and giving ‘sweat’ and the different attitudes towards contributing to our world – and particularly how these very well off men in Japan view their role in RI (and whether it varies from the US and if so, how?)

Here then, in this country where the tax structure doesn’t provide incentives for donations, giving money is truely a luxury for the rich. Giving money is a luxury for anyone, really – but in the US our tax deductions make it more accessible. The ‘money’ vs. ‘sweat’ debate is a little of a round and round debate – but I do think there is a mentality associated with both. And I’m hoping that in the next few weeks I start to uncover what is happening here.

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