Wind Phones of The Woodlands carry messages to the loved ones who are gone forever

By: Priyanka Johri
| Published 12/26/2021


THE WOODLANDS, TX -- One woman’s quest to provide solace to people in her community who have lost loved ones has created The Wind Phones of the Woodlands. Priyanka Johri a local entrepreneur who owns Woodlands Eco Realty, Pure Mutts Animal Sanctuary; and Acorn Manor Assisted Living Homes has seen her share of losses. Taking care of elderly, hospice humans and dogs means that she loses lots of people and pets she takes care of. She understands what it means for families to lose a loved one may it be a human family member or furry family member.

3 years ago, Johri saw a documentary about the “Phone of the Wind” in Japan. Simple concept of placing a phone that is not connected in a private phone booth that is available to anyone who wants to talk to someone who cannot hear them anymore.

In 2010 Japanese Garden Designer Itaru Sasaki in outside the coastal city of ?tsuchi installed the original Wind Phone to talk to his cousin who he missed. It was unique way to deal with his grief. “Because my thoughts couldn’t be relayed over a regular phone line,” he told the Japanese public broadcasting network NHK, “I wanted them to be carried on the wind.” After the 2011 tsunami hit ?tsuchi and a tenth of its population was killed, the Wind Telephone became a place for thousands of tsunami survivors who visit it to deliver messages to their loved ones lost in that tsunami.

Johri loved the idea and thought it would be great to provide something similar to her families who have lost loved ones. But before she could start her project pandemic hit the world putting everything on hold. Seeing how many people in her community lost loved ones she wanted to do something to ease the grief of many. She decided that she needed to do the Wind Phone for the whole community and not just for her resident’s families. So this Christmas she created two phone booths where people can come and call their loved ones on the other Side and their words will be carried on the wind. Idea is similar to people releasing balloons or lanterns with the message to loved ones.

She says that it is more about providing the safe space for people who are grieving and have unsaid things weighing on their hearts. This is where they can come pick up the phone and pour their hearts out to a silent listener on the other side. It is the place where you do not have to hide your feelings and can be open about how and what you are feeling. It is about last words that were not spoken, a goodbye that was never said, or a hello again, a future plan or a secret you want to share with them. It can be anything you want it to be.

Recently she saw one of her friend post on her FB page “I wish Heaven had a phone”. She knew it was a sign that she needed to do it now. She has been seeing similar posts and knew lot more people were struggling this holiday. Johri said it is the right time for the Wind Phones. With pandemic loved ones haven’t been able to hold memorial services or funeral services in traditional way. But human need to grieve hasn’t changed. So many people are feeling disconnected and lost. Solitude of a phone booth gives them a chance to say what they may have said if they had traditional services. Just having a chance to say what is in your heart may make holidays little easier for people.

The Two Wind Phone booths are temporarily installed outside one of the Acorn Manor Assisted Living Homes in The Woodlands until January 2nd 2022 and are available to anyone who may want to visit and use them.

Both booths will be later installed permanently so they can be available anytime for people to utilize the. One will be installed at one of the other Acorn Manor properties around the corner and 2nd booth will be installed at the Pure Mutts Animal Sanctuary for people grieving for their pets said Johri.

For more information, visit the Priyanka Johri on Facebook or call 832-277-3577

Comments •
Log In to Comment