We last left Sakura Quest in a position of Sanae giving up and Yoshino not truly understanding the lives of the town she’s attempting to revitalize as Queen; and boy does it parallel real-life struggles. Luckily though, we’re starting the episode on the right foot. Setting her presumptions aside, our pink-haired protagonist sets off to learn about Manoyama sculptures on her own (and luckily not down the fish-carving gimmick route).
Focusing on ranma once more, Yoshino endeavors to learn as much as she can from different sources, going so far as to go to galleries, museums, and the lumberyards that supply the wood. With this break, all the ladies (minus Sanae) have the opportunity to do their own self-study regarding the matter. As such, they learned the history, not just of ranma, but of woodcarving in Manoyama as a whole. Interestingly enough, the discovered that the wood carvers originally began carving Buddhist statues, and as time went on, the demand for that waned, and so they began to do more commercial items, such as the ranma, leading us to the position to where the town is now. In Manoyama, no doubt including other places, woodcarving changed over specific eras. The current problem facing the town regarding that is that it’s all in a period of transition. What the next era of wood carving will be and the lack of young blood entering the field is what has left it stagnant and dying, the product of an aging generation adverse to change. But bringing around that change is easier said than done.
And let me tell you…our girl, Yoshino, has some pretty out there ideas. Hate to break it to you, but a wooden Sagrada Familia-style structure seems like a horrible idea.
Meanwhile, Sanae is struggling with her own issues regarding her feelings of running away and inadequacies that Kazushi succeeded in stirring up last episode. Why is she doing what she’s doing? Does she even like it? If she doesn’t, why continue? Enter Tatsuo, acting as the excellent foil to Kazushi, who continues to labor over a cancelled order that their master left uncompleted in his passing. The customer who ordered the piece died as well, so why bothering continuing? What Tatsuo said kind of shook me.
“Sculpting is just a job. There’s no point in it if you don’t get paid.”
But I have a feeling Sanae does not feel the same, at least not deep in her heart.
Who would have thought that the bard I’ve obsessed over for the last few episodes was a nomadic artist with a minute celebrity status!
The way to bring attention to a project is to have a name with influence attached to it, and the Bard is the ticket. Using his name and influence, Yoshino was able to procure some sponsors and get the poorly-planned Sakura Pond Familia off the ground. With a nice heartfelt conversation with Yoshino, Sanae gets back onto her feet ant working as the Minister of IT once again, solving a bunch of problems at once. If sponsors won’t cut it, turn to crowdfunding as well. Next, Yoshino’s original planned involved a huge renovation of the castle, but why do that when you have the train station? That is the central hub of activity in town and has the most people coming and going. The plan turns to displaying the woodcraft sculptures in the station for the highest amount of visibility. What sealed the deal for me with this episode, bringing Kazushi’s spectacular ranma into the fray. It’s not going to sit around forgotten, it’s going to be enjoyed in a public place for generations to come.
Good job team.
Why do we do what we do if we are so easily replaceable?
What’s the point of it?
This is something that Sanae has also been grappling with, and believe it or not, Yoshino has the answer for her. She doesn’t disagree that people are replaceable, but that everyone does the same thing their own way. Even though someone can replace Sanae at her job in Tokyo, they’re different people and can’t do things the exact same way she did previously. And so what if no one praised her, the silent majority still appreciates it.
I can relate to that. Why do I continue to crank out posts for a blog that five people occasionally like? There are plenty of more popular blogs out there that are far more consistent out there than me, with more followers, more likes, more comments. But…there’s still the people who come to read mine. Even f it’s only just a little glance. And so, I will leave you with that, fair readers.
I do this for me, and I do this for the silent you.