My father brought me this maneki-neko from Japan when I was a teenage girl. As a young boy growing up in poverty in Akron, Ohio, he never imagined he would leave the country. Fast forward decades later and he had a family (my mom and me)…and a career that allowed him to travel the world, and to experience and enjoy the cultures of so many different types of people. He brought this love of diverse cultures back to me and it survives his unexpected passing away 4 years ago. This beloved object sits on top of a tower of books in my bedroom, resting on the box it came in, nestle in its original Japanese wrapping paper.