Here’s my ideal way of starting 2016…
One of my star Mah Jongg students is gone for the summer but I just received the following message from her. All I can say is, thank goodness her husband and son are safe…and the Mah Jongg set is intact. Hey – we know our priorities, right?!!
“Ann, my house in Pennsylvania burned down on Thursday night. My son and husband (and two of three dogs) made it out safely. We are going through to salvage what we can. Guess what? That heavy wood case protected my Mah Jongg tiles! One must keep a sense of humor!”
And a beautiful enrobed set it is…I must add a sorrowful note to this story which I have spun with a bit of a frivolous air – sadly, the third dog did die. He was 13 years old, blind, deaf, and an incredibly dear soul. He couldn’t hear anyone yelling to get out of the house. He was sound asleep on the bed he loved. Hopefully he has now made it across the Rainbow Bridge where he happily frolics in the sunshine every day, sight and hearing fully restored.
I’m hugging Lizzie right now as I think of this dear old pup who didn’t make it out of the house…
Yesterday was Mah Jongg Wednesday with the OMs and S1 hosted. Look at the beautiful table with a spectacular fall centerpiece that was waiting for us:
Lunch was so delicious – spicy chili, three different and wonderful kinds of cheese, cole slaw, and – YUM! – corn bread!
Read on to see the very special gift I received…
A number of questions and comments have come in to the blog lately and so I thought I would take this chance to answer a few of them as best as possible:
The first question comes from Jill who initially wrote about the enrobed set she inherited from her grandmother: Hi Ann, Hope you are doing well! Did anyone ever respond to you about my enrobed tiles? I just picked up what appears to be a vintage Japanese Mah Jongg set. It has never been used. The label on the bottom of the case says “Kimura, Japan”. It is a very compact case with velvet lined trays. There is a booklet of directions which is titled ” Chinese Game of Four Winds”. Might you be familiar with this? Thank you! Jill
One of my favorite Mah Jongg experts, Tony Watson, has taken a shot at this (before he had a chance to see any of these photos): Without a pic it’s difficult, but I’m guessing it’s a urea resin set, small tiles with thick white top backed with thin bamboo, deeply impressed designs in a tiny suitcase. The booklet is a standard title that comes with many sets. Probably from the 60s/70s. But I’m only shooting the breeze here!
And, after Tony saw the photos, he added: Yes, probably 70s, I have a slide-top set with the same birdbam, but these dragons are very unusual for the Japanese sets, they look like those in Matthew & Johni’s mystery sets. Material is as I said before, urea, and very fine impressed designs – excellent quality, which is why they look brand new. I’m intrigued by the tiles to the top of the dragons… I can’t make out what they are, but they appear to have a 1 on them???
And you have all heard me extol the virtues of the great Mah Jongg teacher, Johni Levene, who wrote: I’m with Tony here – it seems 1970’s ish. I have one and know absolutely nothing about it but they are a nice quality and it’s pretty so I kept it.
And then Johni added more comments: Oh wait, that’s totally not the set I thought it was now that I see more tiles. Still, I think it’s the same time period. I’ve not seen it in that case before though, but it’s probably one of those private label type things. Here is one I have handy with a different bird. Its a slightly different style than hers and a bit later.
Here is a close up of the bam, not the same as the mystery set.
I love the Mah Jongg community!
Read on for more questions and comments…