Look what I found! “The Buddha Cafe!”
We came across this wonderful cafe just as we made it down through the mountain pass from temple 12. It is located in Kamiyama which is the most beautiful town nestled in the valley surrounded by tall majestic mountains. This cafe is owned and operated by the most super friendly people Matt and Satsuki Lawson and their two beautiful children Kaiya and Bo, and is the only place you can get a hamburger for miles around. It’s so funny to see all the grandmas and grandpas stop in to order hamburgers. They told me that the locals love their hamburgers here, and I can see why, it’s delicious!
I stuck my head in to see the interior when we arrived and I can overhear Satsuki calling out to Matt, “Hey… there’s a monk outside”. Matt quickly came out to greet me and we chatted a little bit. I was really surprised to hear that Matt used to be an ordained Buddhist monk for 8 years! We quickly hit it off and became friends. They generously offered us lunch as ossettai. Matt and Satsuki made me a mighty “Buddha Bowl” salad and french fries which was really amazing. It took me a while to finish it.
We didn’t have much time to hang out since they were both very busy with customers and we also had to keep moving to find where we would rest for the night as it was getting dark soon, but Matt gave me contact info and told me to contact him when my ohenro was over and perhaps I could come back and visit and stay at their place for a couple of days. Knowing I am still new in my ordination he wanted to offer me some helpful tips and give me some support to help me on my spiritual journey forward. I really appreciated his and Satsuki’s help. A little foreshadowing but I did ended up revisiting their beautiful family after I completed the ohenro which was another amazing experience I can’t wait to share with you all.