Mr. Mitsuya Toyao is the manager of a beautiful and welcoming little shop in Odai-Cho, in the Mie prefecture. The store is called Yamaneko-tei (やまねこ亭) which means something like the « Mountain Cat Pavillion » or the « Lynx Kiosk ». Its name was chosen to celebrate the freedom in the mountains. The place looks very cosy and welcoming, with wooden table and chairs for the visitors, a furnace in the corner, with a kettle ready for tea time.
More, two moustachioed inhabitants keep the place: Orihime (おりひめ) — the weaver celebrated at Tanabata festival (the Vega star) and Yume (ゆめ) — « Dream », both abandoned female cats who found a new home at Mitsuya Toyao's.
The shop was primarily dedicated to selling Japanese hair ornaments, but for some months, it has become the only "brick'n'mortar" shop where to find a bunch of unique nose flutes by different craftsmen. On the shelves, you can find instruments by Akio Takamura and Go Nagayama, Susumu Yasuda, Yoshihiro Sawada (RON) among many other that I don't know, notably the maker of the "Shōzan kama" ones, cream and grey striped clay, the craftsman who made the new wooden models made in cypress, etc. You even can find some Bocarinas!
And have a look to the shelves!:
I ordered some nose flutes from Yamaneko-tei (check their review in a later post...), and Mr. Toyao is very kind and generous. I used Google translate to communicate, and I paid by bank transfer to Japan. A bit slow, but no problems, and Mr. Toyao didn't wait for the payment to send the flutes, so I received them in some 10 days.
So, you can order nose flutes from the shop, by contacting Mr. Toyao through his Facebook page, or if you are in the area, it's certainly worth visiting the shop:
Yamaneko-tei - やまねこ亭
Sawara 141-2, Odai-cho
Mie Prefecture Multigenki