Some Tasteful Japanese Aesthetic….

Tokyo’s kitschy English signs, like the ones I linked to yesterday, are purely for the consumption of the young wannabe urbanite. The signage in smaller towns, particularly in the well preserved old towns, adhere to the spare, subtle norms of Japanese aesthetic. Elegant and beautiful, quite like the artful plating of their food or the…

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Future Tense

My sister suggested we get our futures foretold at the Kau Cim stall in the Asakusa shrine in Tokyo. I didn’t think it was a good idea. I do not believe in divination and felt it would play on her mind if she didn’t ‘draw’ good luck. But she was insistent and so we went…

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Chasing Shadows….

Perspective and composition, in much of my photography, thus far at least, has been more instinctive and impulsive than deliberate! As has the capturing of light and shadow. I am in the process of learning to remedy that and pay more attention to the rules. In the meantime here is a selection of serendipitous shadows from our travels……. Shadow…

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The Grand Gate On The Sea

I spot the Otorii from across the expanse of the (Seto) Inland Sea, emerging from the waters like a giant Pi symbol against the dense green mantle of the hills beyond. More bleached terracotta than the vermilion of the postcards, this 52 feet high floating ‘grand gate‘ claims equal billing with Mount Fuji as the iconic symbol of…

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Fortress In Focus!

The steel and concrete tower of the Osaka Castle is a 1995 restoration. Faithful to its Tokoguwa era splendour in appearance, and the final in a series of rebuilding attempts since its founding in the 16th century. The castle’s very modern interior houses a small but informative museum, with exhibits on the Shoguns (warlords), who were an intrinsic part of…

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The Cleansing Waters Of The Temizuya

Ritual cleansing prior to worship, is an age old practice. The use of water to purify oneself, being obligatory in most world religions until today. Traditionally, this purification was done at a river, stream or seashore.  As religions evolved, ablution fountains and Lavers started appearing in the outer courts of places of worship. The temple tank…

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Shinjuku By Night & Au Revoir

As some of you already know, I am off again, this time with R to Laos & Cambodia for two weeks. That is misleading actually. R was very sure he didn’t want an in depth cultural immersion, so we are only going to Luang Prabang and Siem Reap, with brief stopovers in Vientiane and Phnom…

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‘The Mountain Of Fuji’

“No, that can’t be Mount Fuji” I dismissed my sisters query very authoritatively, as I snuggled back into my seat. “Where is the snow cap and cloud cover?” My sister’s faith in my opinion was plain for all to see, when she turned to our guide for confirmation. “Nooooo! Where is the snow cap and cloud cover?” she…

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How Tall Is Tall?

The Tokyo Skytree is a freetsanding tower that is as different from the Window Tower of Uzes as you can possibly imagine. At 634m it is the world’s tallest tower and the second highest freestanding structure. My one thought, gazing at the soaring latticework of steel tubing looming in front of me is…..how much higher can…

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