Mr. Ida of Sapporo Tokyu Department Store
Around 20 years ago, we had never even dreamed of taking part in a local department store’s a special event until one day, Mr. Ida of the Sapporo Tokyu Department Store came to visit our shop.
“There is an interesting event. Won’t you come to Sapporo sometime? Autumn in Hokkaido is wonderful with beautiful autumn leaves and good food.” Mr. Ida’s smile and enthusiasm was such that we involuntarily responded, “We’d love to!” without a second thought.
Later, our shop was busy for several years and I was unable to continue attending the event. However, Mr. Ida would drop by our shop in Kyoto every so often.
Almost 12 years ago, following some in-company trouble, we reopened under the name, ”Ichizawa Shinzaburo Hanpu.” On the opening day, when the door of our new shop opened at 9am, an incredible number of people were waiting in front of the door. Standing at the head of the line was Mr. Ida who had rushed down from Sapporo. The surprise and sheer delight of seeing him there is unforgettable. Although he was no longer in charge of the Sapporo event, we were deeply moved that he still remembered us. We decided then and there that we would remain involved with Tokyu Department Store and indirectly with Mr. Ida.
Last May, when Shinzaburo’s interview on Cambria Palace, a TV program, was aired, our stock decreased so much so that we had to cancel taking part in the Sapporo Tokyu Department Store event. We are deeply sorry and regret having had to let down so many people.
This year, we are really looking forward to taking part in the event which will begin from June 6th.
It appears that Mr. Ida is retiring this year. In large companies, people are often transferred to another section after a few years and so even if a close working relationship has been made, sometimes it is cut off. We have been in business for a long time, and we still feel that relationships with people are essential. We are most appreciative of Mr. Ida and our long relationship with him and to mark his retirement, have checked and double checked all our preparations and will be taking five staff members from Kyoto, including craftspeople, to welcome customers in Hokkaido.
We look forward to seeing you all soon.
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