The Hospitality Committee of the United Nations Delegations
Nov 6 • 2015
Accompanying Mme. Ban Soon-Taek, spouse of the Secretary General of the United Nations, were ambassadorial spouses and delegates from various missions on their visit to the Nakashima Studio and Foundation for Peace. This beginning of November in the Northeast was mild and sunny. Everyone enjoyed being outside and walking around the grounds to see the various buildings and appreciate the landscape.
Arrangements were facilitated by the Nakashima Foundation for Peace board member, Miriam Belov. We are very grateful to the Hospitality Committee for United Nations Delegations (HCUND), for coordinating the trip. A small bus brought the many women from NYC to New Hope, Pa. Mme. Ban and Mme. Miri Kim Oh, spouse of the South Korean Ambassador, came by car for security protocol.
Once everyone gathered first in the Conoid Studio, it was laughter and excitement as they were busy taking pictures of the place and the beautiful furniture designed by George Nakashima and Mira. Mira gave a short history of George’s life. We then divided into two groups. Ru Amagasu, Mira’s son, took one while Mira toured the others. Mira’s husband, Jon Yarnall, helped and shared stories. Kevin Nakashima, Mira’s brother, also shared stories and regaled the women. All visited the Wood Shed which holds vast amount of wood planks from all over the world. Then, onto the cozy “Mountain Villa” with its precious tea room. Finally, all walked down to the Foundation for Peace Arts Building to reconvene and have lunch.
Doing a most remarkable job behind the scenes was Soomi, Ru’s wife, who is Korean by birth. She had met Mme. Ban Soon-Taek in January at the luncheon at the Metropolitan Museum of Art and they had warmed to one another, speaking Korean and realizing they knew people in common from their country. Soomi was especially capable in making the Korean women feel at home. And today she helped everyone feel well taken care of for she also organized a sumptuous buffet luncheon this day. Mme. Hilale graciously brought Moroccan sweets that were a delicious surprise.
It had just been the UN’s 70th Anniversary on October 24th. The UN blue color lit the NYC headquarters and more than 275 iconic buildings and monuments in nearly 75 countries across the world. Miriam asked the women to visualize it encircling the globe in peace. All were open to being part of the meditation.
Miriam’s message – for whom it was an especially meaningful day as it was also her birthday:The universe had given me an extraordinary and special present. A most humble thank you flows from my heart. May you also feel a deep gratitude at this time of Thanksgiving for the universe’s presents to you!