And at one point, Geni talked about how to make different sounds on the shakuhachi. He played a jazzy scale, and when he was finished, Choko San played a similar scale on the keyboard and said, "I thought you were playing this! Ishi ya---ki---imo---If you hear this in Japan, you jump in your shoes and wave the man down and tell him, I want two, or three!" (It's the sweet potato song from the trucks that roam the neighborhood in the evenings, peddling their fresh-from-the-oven yams. You can read more about it here.)
Choko San also played and sang a Japanese song that she said was very famous in America. She was surprised no one knew the words (in Japanese!). She said the song is about when you are sad, you should look up to heaven because then the tears won't fall and you can just push yourself through. It was really pretty.
She also mentioned something that I never realized before. She said that in Japan, when you leave from talking to someone and say goodbye, you say, "Goodbye!" and then walk away. In America, you say "Goodbye!" and turn around to leave but then--"Oh! I wanted to tell you this also!" She said, "It takes an hour to say goodbye in America!" When she related that difference, it struck me. If I even think of something else to say to someone, I just tell them next time I see them. I get so uncomfortable when my husband chases someone down for me to tell them something extra because, WE ALREADY SAID GOODBYE! This is why.