Stories of Kindness from Around the World

A Thousand Cranes - A Scavenger Hunt in Reverse

--by fern514, posted Jun 29, 2014
Yesterday morning, I spent a glorious few hours with a group of close friends.  We were sitting down in a cozy corner of the cafe, sipping on delicious coffee and catching up on the past year.  

As we were leaving, one friend found a beautiful blue oragami paper crane, casually perched on top of the mantle of a fire place.  Attached to the paper crane was along a lovely quote that read, "You don't need to know.  Life wouldn't be this grand adventure if you knew what was coming.  Love the mystery."  Later, we discovered another piece of paper that shared the story of the paper cranes.  It read...

"On Valentine's Day of 2011, I came home to find a beautiful mass of moving color.  My ex-boyfriend had folded 1000 paper cranes and hung them on my porch.  He left a note saying if I made a wish, it would be granted because of his effort. 

At first, I considered making a wish and then burning them all.  I didn't want his energy hanging around.  But the different colored birds strung together were so beautiful and I appreciated the dedication it took to make so many.  I decided to make 1000 different expressions of my wish (something along the lines of being in love with life) and give them away to other people.  Whenever I was inspired and reminded of the way I want to be in the world, I would type out a wish and attach it to a crane with the intention that it would reach the right person at the right time.  I numbered each wish and planned to scatter them about when I reached 1000. 

While I was working on the project, the cranes were hanging all over my apartment.  I would ask guests to pick one.  I was delighted by the serendipity that came out of these interactions, the specific connection that a person had to their crane wish.  To continue to witness how the wishes affected people, even after they were scattered and found by strangers.  

One stranger who found a crane contacted me on my facebook page.  Their quote read, "Leave no stone unturned.  Deeply explore the beauty of your life."  - Neil Gaiman.  When I told him the quote was spoken as a farewell by a mother ghost to her son in "The Graveyard Books." John began telling me about his mother's death and how he had just finished carving her headstone."

Thank you, whoever you are, for blessing us with these beautiful paper cranes!!!  Finding them and reading their words of wisdom was an amazing gift and we feel so grateful. 

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Readers Comments

MOHAN NISHTALA wrote: Unique & interesting
MOHAN NISHTALA wrote: Very unique and intersting
Sylvia wrote: I have folded thousands of cranes over 30+ years as tangible prayers for peace and blessings. I often share them with people at events i attend. Today, i was on a bus tour of historic churches in the city where i live, and i left cranes in the various churches, as well as gifting some to other tour participants. I especially enjoy tucking them under windshield wipers of cars with bumper stickers that read "commit random acts of kindness and simple acts of beauty. " i find folding and sharing origami is a wonder full way to connect with myself, others, and the spirit of mystery.

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