29 May, 2011

June, The Boring Month

June in Japan is sometimes considered to be the most boring month of the year.

There is no bank holiday in June.

For students, it's before the summer vacation.

It means, other than weekend, people don't have any days off.

What's more, in Tokyo, it rains a lot during the rainy season, which normally starts in the beginning of June and ends in the middle of July.

This year, the rainy season has already started in Tokyo. Women around me (mostly editors working for publishers) are talking about buying a new umbrella and a new pair of rain boots... actually it sounds kind of fun.

Even on a rainy day, it's important to find something to make you happy;)

28 May, 2011

Street Art

I often like looking at graffiti.

Most of the time I don't know what it is, but I still like feeling the artist's passion to express his or her inner world.

I probably think this is by two artists. The first one only wrote the letters in winter, and the second one added the frame and more colours in spring.

On this big white canvas, on a street in Paris, there was the nice collaboration of the two people... probably they don't know each other.

25 May, 2011

Travelling by Train 2

A friend of mine from Hong Kong taught me why trains in Tokyo are not as crowded as before.

It's because they think subways are stronger against earthquakes.

I see... but I feel better on the ground rather than underground;)

As I don't own a TV, don't read newspaper, I am probably not receiving too much information as other people are.

If I need some specific information, I actively look for it myself on Internet. My life has been fine without "the old media".

This is the famous statue of Hachiko, the loyal dog in front of Shibuya station, one of the busiest station in Tokyo.

Hachiko (wikipedia)

It's a very rare close-up shot of Hachiko! Cute;-)

23 May, 2011

Travelling by Train

I normally work at home, and I don't travel by train or a subway.

I got on the JR Yamanote line, one of the major lines to connect many areas within Tokyo.

TEPCO, the Tokyo electricity company was reporting constantly the amount of the electricity consumption as a daily report on the displays inside the train, all over, so frequently...

This is a real waste of energy.

Honestly speaking, there are so many funny things related to the government and other authorities.

People have been loosing trust on them, and now they say the latest information on Twitter is more useful.

Ordinary people in Japan may be strong, and very calm. But I am loosing trust in Japan as a nation.

I am not so worried about that. Even if the government is corrupted, our spirits will live for eternity.

21 May, 2011

Sending Love and Light to the World

Sometimes people use the phrase "sending love and light".

For a long time, I have been looking for a way to do it.

Now I am happy to tell you that I found my own way to do so.

Photography has become an important part of my life as well as writing.

And capturing the light, and the love I found within me and around me at the time is what photography is all about for me.

And through this blog, I can literary send it to people all around the world.

We are going through a difficult time here in Tokyo, but I feel so motivated now. I will keep updating my blog, keep writing, and keep taking photos.

Happy weekend, my friends!


20 May, 2011

Café à la papa?

People in Japan love everything from France. These days, it is fashionable to use French words for shops and restaurants.

English words are too common, so they started using French worlds.

There are so many cafes and restaurants in Tokyo people never remember the names of.

For example, there is a nice French restaurant called "4em". Their customers don't know how to read it, but the restaurant is busy.

And not far from 4em, there is a cafe called, Quatre Vingt Neuf (89). Nobody remembers the name. But it is also full.

Here, the French language is not used as a communication tool. It is used as part of the design. So, it doesn't really matter if people remember the names or not.

On this photo, it's something I found few days ago, Café à la papa.

At the moment, it is a big mystery for me, why they use the name, and what kind of food or drinks they serve!


18 May, 2011

What Changed in Tokyo

It seems like the mental stress I had by the earthquake was bigger than I thought.

I still feel the earth is shaking again, so many times a day when there is no earthquake.

A lot of people have the same problem now.

Since I don't feel like going out when I know that the whole city is dark, I try to enjoy myself during the day.

And finding something interesting in the nature more than before.

This is what I found today near home. It's a Japanese maple tree. Looks like a person wearing a pink hat!

Nature is amazing, it always gives me a smile;)

16 May, 2011

What I Have Lost

Funny, but I don't feel like eating chocolates and ice cream these days.

It looks like I lost my daily habit to end my day with something sweet after the earthquake.

I also lost my habit to do my daily exercise at the same time.

I wonder I needed to burn a lot of calories just because of sweets?

Have a great week, my friends!

12 May, 2011

Enjoying Home

People in Tokyo are getting more and more conscious about the origin of fresh food.

I don't want to be so sensitive about radiation, but I do want to know what I eat.

If you eat at restaurants, you never know where the the origin of the food is. So, choosing food carefully at shops and cook myself makes sense to me.

As a result, I am enjoying myself at home more. This is an interesting "bi-product" of the earthquake!

09 May, 2011

Life in Tokyo Now

Life in Tokyo is basically okay at the moment, except it is extremely dark at night.

A friend of mine said "Tokyo is so dark now, like Paris" but in fact it is much darker here.

There is plenty of food and water available at shops. But I really don't feel like going out at night.

Probably a lot of people feel the same. Many of my friends here suggested to have lunch together, instead of dinner.

As a night person, this is quite challenging! Making an appointment to see people at noon is something new for me!

Have a great week, all my friends!

07 May, 2011

Some Surprises

What surprised me today.

1. Some Japanese coins, 5 yen and 50 yen, have holes in the centre. So unusual!

Japanese coins (google image)

2. People in Japan like to wear mostly dark clothing.

3. There is no trash bin on the street, and it's very clean everywhere in Tokyo.

4. Most shops always give you free shopping bags, unless you tell them you don't need any.

5. Vending machines take big bills, such as 10,000 yen bills (about 86 Euro as of today) even when you buy a single ride ticket for about 2 Euro.

Well, I was only way from Tokyo for 6 weeks, and many of the those little things surprise me!

05 May, 2011

Manneken Pis on Boys Day

Well, at the age of 42, I am starting to enjoy Boys Day in my own way.

I was sort of hoping this Manneken Pis replica to wear some special costume today;)
Please look at my old post, Costume Play?

Boys Day

I safely got back to Tokyo yesterday evening with full of good memories.

I left my heart in Paris. I hope somebody is taking care of it!

5 of May is Chidren's Day, as known as Boys' Festival in Japan, it is a national holiday.

When I was a little boy, I was not very happy with it.

I never had a courage to tell my parents why. The reason was, I was so fascinated by the Girls Day

Girls Day, 3 of March, is full of glorious and fantastic items, hina dolls, peach blossoms, white sake (shiro-zake), lanterns, special sweets, etc, etc.

Girls Day images (google)

On the other hand, Boys Day items seemed to be always connected to the aggressive side of boys.

Boys Day images (google) 

One of the items is a decorative helmets, which I had no interest on:(

I never told my parents but I actually wanted a set of those beautiful hina dolls. It seemed quite unfair that just because I was a boy, I never had a chance to receive the dolls. I just had to put up with boring Boys Day items.

Anyway, as a little boy, I was never interested in boys toys in general for the same reason. And because I never wanted any of the boys toys, my parents almost didn't buy me any toys.

This photo was taken at Musée de l'Armée in Paris. The boy seems so excited to see big cannons, and the father seems somewhat happy to see him running around.

This is probably what my father wanted from me as a boy. But unfortunately I wasn't born that way.

As an adult, I prefer "a canon" than "a cannon," and it's for happy shooting;)

02 May, 2011

Good Bye, Paris

I think I was very fortunate that I had planned a long visit to Paris soon after the big earthquake in Japan.

I was able to stop worrying about all the sad news from my country, and relax and enjoy life together with my friends here, new and old.

It was, of course, reported on the media that so many people outside Japan were concerned about us.

But during my stay in Paris, I really learned how the people actually cared for us, and how they were interested in our traditional culture.

It well known in Japan that people from many other countries love the Japanese "cute cute" pop culture (manga, amime, video games, etc) and sushi.

But now I know that those were not all they care for.

After I get back to Tokyo, I must tell all the Japanese people how France considers Japan as a good friend;-)

For over a century, those two countries have been attracted to each other.

One day I must find out exactly why!

I am going to leave my heart In Paris. I hope somebody takes care of it.