Japan Mochi

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Tokyo is the most exciting and lively place you've ever been. Energy radiates from the crowds of people that press against each other in the cool evening air. Lights from the tall buildings that line the streets reflect off of hundreds of faces as you make your way through the city. 

Visiting Japan had been one of the best ideas you've ever had. You pop another konpeitō candy in your mouth as you try to navigate the busy street. The food, especially the candy, is some of the best you've tasted in your entire life. You pop a few more in your mouth before you're jostled by a suit clad businessman.

"Gomen'nasai (sorry)," you tell him with a slight bow. He ignores you and stumbles away, obviously drunk out of his mind. "Some people," you mumble to yourself.

That's when you realize you've been pushed into a dark alleyway. The lights from the street cast eerie shadows on the piles of empty boxes and bags of trash. You bend down to pick up your bag of candy that fell when you were rudely pushed. Several of the candies have spilled out onto the ground, and you sigh in disappointment.

Suddenly, one of the empty boxes moves. You look at it in surprise. It moves again slightly, and a small, round pink object wiggles its way out of the box. You watch as it hops over to the spilled konpeitō and starts eating them. Upon closer inspection, you notice what looks like a miniature katana strapped to its back. What an odd...whatever it is.

"What are you?" you whisper in amazement.

The round thing looks up at you with big black eyes. "Gomen'nasai, Watashi wa eigo ga hanasenai (I am sorry, I do not speak English).

You stare at the object in shock. Did it just speak to you? You watch it for another moment as it finishes the last of the spilt candy. You had heard the same phrase spoken many times on your trip already, so you rephrase your question. "Anata wa nandesuka (what are you)?"

The little pink thing looks up at you again. "Watashi wa mochi desu (I am a mochi)."

At first you're very confused. What does it mean it's a mochi? You slowly reach out and give it a light poke. It's soft to the touch, just like mochi. You're very familiar with the rice cakes, and you've eaten quite a bit on your trip. A small sakura pattern near the bottom of the mochi draws your eyes. 

"Sakura mochi?" you ask.

"Hai (yes)," the pink mochi answers.

"Anata wa, namae ga arimasu ka (do you have a name)?" you struggle to say in Japanese. You've taken classes for a few years, but it's not an easy language to grasp.

"Hai, Nihon Mochi wa watashi no namaedesu (yes, Japan Mochi is my name)," the little mochi answers.

"Nihon Mochi," you repeat. It's an odd name, but a talking mochi is odd too, so it kind of fits. "Anata wa koko de nani o shite iru (what are you doing here)?"

"Watashi wa sute raremashita (I was thrown away)," the pink mochi tells you sadly.

"Naze (why)?" you ask surprised. Who could throw away something so cute?

Japan Mochi looks down sadly. "Watashiniha wakaranai (I do not know)."

You look at the sad little mochi with sympathy. It's not fair for it to be left alone. You pull out another candy from your bag, and offer it to the pink mochi. "Anata wa watashitoisshoni kitai (would you like to come with me)?"

Japan Mochi looks up at you hopefully. "H-hontōni (really)?" You nod your head and smile. "Ah! Dōmo arigatōgozaimashita (thank you very much)."

"Dōitashimashite (you're welcome)," you say as you pick the happy little mochi up, katana and all.  You give it a soft kiss right above the eyes. It's so cute that you couldn't help yourself. Japan Mochi turns an even darker shade of pink. "Now to get you back to the hotel," you say to yourself as you exit the alley, blushing mochi in arms.

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