I have always been fascinated with origami, the art of folding a two-dimensional piece of paper into a three-dimensional shape without making any cuts. The possibilities are literally endless.
Some time ago I learned how to fold an origami boat. It’s a simple structure, but it’s fun. There is something greatly satisfying in the final step, in pulling the tips open and seeing the sail rise up as the sides spread and give way.
I recently learned how to do a crane, though I still need to practice. (And I need proper origami paper; the stuff I have is too heavy and looks ugly when you crease it.) The crane is more complex than the boat, but not so much that it isn’t fun. Indeed, it is incredibly satisfying once you are almost finished, and you fold the head and position the tail, then fold the wings down, giving it shape and life.
In Japanese folklore the crane is considered a magical animal, and is said to live for one thousand years. It is held that if you make a wish and then fold one thousand origami cranes, your wish will be granted by a crane. Alternatively, some people believe folding one thousand origami cranes will simply bring you good luck.