“What do you expect from life?” It’s a question much in the air these days. To be honest, I find one answer: To see, to keep seeing. To see what is ordinary and still find it wondrous. Yesterday in Ginza:
And Ginza a year ago to the day:
I slept at the office the night of the quake, but not well. In the morning I woke to news of the possible meltdown. In the afternoon I walked over to the Ginza neighborhood.
Tokyo changes constantly, but Ginza is unique because it has always maintain a certain sophistication, a poise. Even if you’ve been to the place just once, you can probably recognize it in an old photograph. This day it looked like it always does, reassuring, albeit a bit empty for a Saturday.
I bought a box of chocolates for the upcoming White Day. I put a coin in a monk’s bowl. I had a blueberry juice. Then I noticed these butterflies:
It was surprising to see a change of display so soon. I took note of the date on the glass, March 11, and remembered how window-dressers work through the night. Imagine while Nature was gathering its force, their hands were bringing us Spring.
The main Ginza intersection in the afternoon after:
View of the Nakagin Building by Kisho Kurokawa from the lobby of Panasonic headquarters in Shiodome:
The building is awaiting demolition, but it appears some people are home:
Every now and then I see copies of the newspaper where I work floating around town. Sometimes in the hands of commuters but more often at florist shops, where the English text makes stylish wrapping for flowers.
This dapper old man, however, had one tucked into the pocket of his white linen suit, as an accessory to his other accessory — a handkerchief in the breast pocket.
I see that jono caught a really good photo of this fish in the Ginza while I was away from Tokyo:
The fish, and other nautically themed window displays and things began appearing just around July 15 — which is “Umi no Hi” (“Ocean Day,” which sounds a lot less military than the official “Marine Memorial Day”). The date marks the start of real summer. Here’s my aqua-set, as promised to jono:
Elections start this morning, so there’s been lots of activity recently.
The slogan on the top reads “Now it’s my turn.” This candidate (not the man with the camera) is running for party that had been in power for over 50 years until they were deposed last year. The campaigners were handing out lots of literature, even to these Chinese tourists in the Ginza:
At a different hour another candidate stumps on a small truck in the Ginza. She’s an animal-rightist who believes that lives of humans, cats and dogs all have the same value.
Below is a campaign flyer for a well known inventor. He claims that looking through the mask improves eyesight. Incindentally I once had lunch with this guy a decade ago. Back then he looked older than this mask shows him. I can’t imagine what he actually looks like now.
In Yoyogi, they were removing posters from the campaign trucks on the eve of the election.