Nobody likes health problems, but let’s face it. That’s all a part of life. Needless to say, I’ve had my share of problems the last month or so; I’m not happy about this, but I’ve certainly realized how very very lucky I am.

By Bill Hersey

(Main Image: Bill and Cirque du Soleil Founder and CEO Guy Laliberté)

I thank God, friends, and the powers that be that I met one of Japan’s outstanding surgeons, Dr. Satoshi Ohtsubo, Surgeon-in-Chief in the Department of Cardiovascular Surgery, his doctors including Tatsuma Yamamoto, and the professionally trained nurses who I feel truly are the angels of one of Tokyo’s top hospitals, Saiseikai Central Hospital. I can tell you that I have really learned to respect Japanese nurses, who do a hell of a job with the many people that they have to work with. Thank you, girls!

The hospital experience has also given me the opportunity to get to know some really good people I should have gotten to know better long before. My hospital room has been a center of attention, with lots of photos of the wonderful celebrities I’ve met over the years. The most beautiful flowers came from a brilliant, sophisticated lady, Dewi Sukarno. Dewi is a star, and her flowers and cards reflect her sophisticated, international personality. I also sincerely appreciate the flowers and visits from so many members of the business community and the diplomatic corps, particularly a few of the best friends that anybody could have: the Ireton family from Warner Brothers, Dale Toriumi from National Azabu, and others. Most of these people have their own problems, but still take time to visit friends and help people out.

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Dewi Sukarno and Norman H. Tolman at Art Fair Tokyo

I missed a lot of events, including the anniversary of Bahrain’s National Day, which was very special this year, with the celebration of the Ambassador and his new wife (name). It was a colorful evening with a Japanese folk dance show. We wish them all the best.

Ireland’s St. Patrick’s Day celebration, with parties at the Embassy, parade in Omotesando, and Min-On’s presentation of the Irish Téada. The Irish ambassador’s wife Kathleen is really making a lot of friends here now that she’s here in Tokyo. Prior to coming to Japan, she took care of many of the visiting dignitaries to the President of Ireland.

We’d also like to congratulate Ambassador and Mrs. Chúc Mung Nam Moi. Their embassy, which is next to my house in Motoyoyogi, was wall-to-wall with people and their Vietnamese friends.

The 2013 Major League Baseball champion Boston Red Sox showed off their World Series trophy at a reception at the U.S. Embassy on Jan. 28. Ambassador Caroline Kennedy welcomed Red Sox Japanese players Koji Uehara and Junichi Tazawa, Red Sox marketing man Adam Grossman and the team mascot, Wally the Green Monster. Also at the reception was MLB Tokyo representative Jim Small, as well as former Major League players Masanori Murakami and Hideki Matsui.

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Red Sox SVP, Marketing, Adam Grossman, Red Sox players Koji Uehara and Junichi Tazawa, Ambassador Kennedy

Things are never dull at the Tolman Collection and no one knows how they do it. Norman Tolman attributes it all to his wonderful staff, who are able to work together and accomplish things that other galleries don’t seem able to do. One example: the Art Fair Tokyo project, which was put under the supervision of Kiyo Fukuda, who arranged things that guaranteed a successful show. Norman’s old friend from the PTA of Lycée Franco-Japonaise days, Francoise Morech, and Dewi Sukarno both stopped by to bring an aura to the event that was greatly appreciated. Toko Shinoda’s wonderful paintings, as usual, stole the show even among the 120 exhibitors and there was a continual crowd at the Tolman Collection booth.

Once again, thank you for all your friendship and attention. I look forward to seeing you all in the near future. Until then, take care. God Bless.


Bill and Egyptian sumo wrestler, Ōsuna-arashi