edogawa

Windy Blown Answer

Tuesday, May 7th, 2013

WIndy Blown Answer, Minmai Kasai, Tokyo

There is a saying out in old California that when the Santa Ana winds blow, all bets are off.  It appears to have happened here in Tokyo.  Those unpredictable winds seem have swept their way clear across the Pacific Ocean pulsate over Tokyo.

The skies in the morning were spotless.  It was nothing but an endless skyscape of blue.  By the afternoon the winds had pushed a collection of fast moving clouds as they raced over the land.

I stepped off the bus and just stared out at the sky.  There was one tiny wisp of cloud over my neighborhood.  I knew it was only a moment.  I knew that it would vanish before I finished my walk home.

It was time to be in the moment.  The time to push the shutter, and capture that slice of moment in way that only photography can.

It was my Windy Blown Answer.

 

 

 

 

Aloe Blooms in the Dead of Winter

Wednesday, February 13th, 2013

Blooming Aloe Kasai Creekside

 

Yesterday the temperature took a dive.  The dry crackling air rushed by as I zipped back from Nishi Kasai to my home in Minami Kasai.  It was cold enough that the weather forecast was calling for snow in the early am hours.

I was following a small creek that runs behind some houses where I came to an amazing aloe bush.  It was near freezing weather and this aloe was blooming with some bright red blossoms.  The aloe was so massive that is snake like branches were hovering only centimeters above the waterline.

Just a little nudge that even when I may be freezing and have wrapped my body from head to toe in winter clothing there is still life that manages to bloom.  There are colors that pop forth out of the gray.

 

Kyo Edogawa Riverside Gardens in Kasai

Wednesday, September 5th, 2012

One Red One in Kasai

Been on the computer too much the past couple of days catching up on some archiving I have been meaning to do for a long time.  The time was ripe to get out in my neighborhood today.

It was suppose to be a blistering hot day, but my 3 in the afternoon it had cooled off a bit and it was time to hop on  my bicycle and see what I can find in my neighborhood.   I live on the southern edge of Tokyo right between two branches of the Edogawa River.

My years ago most of my neighbors would have made their living harvesting seaweed, catching fish, and digging for clams.  There are still little reminders of the nautical past.  Many of the old fishermen now make a living running yukatabune (party boats).  Taking parties out into the bay for an evening of eating, drinking and catching the skyline from the water.

There are plenty of little gardens in my neighborhood.  It never ceases to amaze me how little space is needed, or how tiny a garden may be.  They are all gorgeous in their own way.  Down by the riverside, down the narrow alley ways that have been home for decades.

All in all a good day out in the Kasai.

Corner Roof Top Garden

 

Steping Up Aloe

Shadow Self in the Neighborhood

Saturday, January 7th, 2012

The sun was out.  There air is as crisp as it get in a Tokyo winter, and I went out for a pedal powered stroll.  The neighborhood has seemed so quiet since the new year, and before the schools start up again.  I stopped on a bridge to just look over the place that I call home.

I think of myself as a shadow that just blends into the surroundings, even though in reality, I stick out like the 6ft gaijin I am.  Which is the true version?  I am not sure.  I just wanted to pause and look over the streets where I step in Minami Kasai, in Edogawa ward of Tokyo, Japan.

Shadow Self Overlooking Minami Kasai Tokyo, My Neighborhood

Sunday in the Park with my Neighbors, and the Cherry Blossoms

Sunday, April 10th, 2011

After a cold and rainy Saturday, the weather warmed and I decided to stroll over to my local park to see the cherry blossoms and see if my fellow neighbors would too.  I was astonished to see how my people were crowded into the park.  Families had spread plastic sheets all over the park.  Couple strolled hand in hand snapping pictures as they went.

There are some possible reasons why so many ventured out this year to our neighborhood park.  Metropolitan Tokyo but a damper on the hanami (flower viewing) parties in their parks, but our park is run by Edogawa ward.  There were no lanterns hung this year, but there were many more people.  Maybe they came out to the local park rather than hopping on the train to a bigger Tokyo park.  I also truly feel that with all the tragedy and stress people have been under today was a chance to escape it, and to welcome the beautiful little things that the Japanese take so much pleasure in.

It again gave me a lot of hope to see so many people out and enjoying the weather.  There is still a long way to go, but we are going there together, and Japan will overcome.

Packed Park Flower Garden

Picnic on the Hill with Cherry Blossom Row

Tulip Row

More to Come, Cherry Blossom Buds

Walking in that Magic 15

Monday, September 20th, 2010

Photography and cinematography books always talk about shooting in the magic hour.  That time when the sun is setting and the light takes on a magic golden glow.  This is all true, except for the fact that the time is more like only 15 minutes of golden light.  I love it when my walk home coincides with that golden light.  The ordinarily beautiful bathes in that liquid gold.

A/C Unit, the Sun and Me

Sunnyside of the Mailbox

A Good Day to be Out

Windy Hood

Thursday, August 12th, 2010

I wanted to go into central Tokyo today but the weather decided otherwise and I just walked around my neighborhood while the wind whipped around me.  My neighborhood sits of the edge of Tokyo Bay.  Being in such close proximity to the water is a blessing.  The breeze blows in, the ocean smell sometimes drifts in though the open windows.

These are the things I see everyday.

They are the beauty in the most ordinary objects.

They are my hood.

Forrest House

Beyond Gates

No Bicycle, Red Door, Blue Net

Riverside or Liverside?

Wednesday, July 28th, 2010

I guess it all depends on your point of view.  The sun is baking the small boat rental, and fishing boats that line part of the river on the Kasai, or Urayasu side of the Kyoedogawa River.  It is a little piece of the local culture that I love to investigate.  Old signs that are faded to perfection.  The algae green water that flows out to Tokyo Bay, along with that ocean smell that wafts over the neighborhood.

Window Patch

Riverside Pylon and Bob

Get on the Boat

Heart Circle Fly Spiderella

Wednesday, June 23rd, 2010

Rain and rained it did today.  It poured so hard that I couldn’t see out my window.  I do like the rain, as long as I am not caught in the middle of it.  I saw a common species that inhabits the streets of Tokyo after a big storm.  I have named this species the “Spiderella.”  They can be found by the side of the road, sprawled out soaking up the sun after the rain stops.

The Pure Heart, Lost for Now

Taking Flight into the Self

It All Comes Back Around

Spiderella

Perception is Hard to See

Wednesday, June 16th, 2010

It poured.  It came down so hard that it was hard to see that far ahead today.  It reminded me of what a good friend and I used to say.  That in order to truly perceive, one had to see with your ears, smell with your eyes, taste with your fingers and hear with your nose.  All the senses must be used in ways they are not used to in order to benefit from the whole picture.

Think about it.  Can you hear a potato?  Can you touch a blue sky?  Can you smell blue?

Mix it up, jumble it up, use your senses in ways they have never been used before.

Friends Lend Me Your Ears so that we Can See

Five Wires are Better

Edogawian Bird

And It Continues

A Broom Should Always Look this Good

Sunday, June 13th, 2010

I had to venture to the heart of Edogawa Ward to have my free yearly health check.  I love that there is some preventive medicine practiced in Japan.  It might not be perfect, but it is better than none at all.

The temperature peaked at about 32 yesterday.  Quite hot for June, but at least it was dry and in the shade it was perfect summer weather.  After the check I wandered alongside a shaded stream a little light headed from the lack of food, and the blood sample given.  I love looking at the simple structures and constructs that people have created for themselves and their community.  There were places to sit, things to climb on and back doors with everything all decayingly tidy.  A sort of wabi sabi attitude in the hot dry air.

This is the Tokyo that I have come to respect.  The endless winding streets, were everything at first glance looks the same as everywhere else.  Train your mind and your eye to work in unison to see something uniquely beautiful.

Tokyo, rust, concrete and wood.

Box Door Broom

Second Past the Hand

Got Your Nut

Plaything

Yellow Roof Exhaust

Stop I Will Shoot

Thursday, May 13th, 2010

The first image was taken at a local workshop in my neighborhood.  I must have passed by this front a million times.  I had never noticed how beautiful and balanced the front was.  I guess the main reason I never noticed it was usually there are several cars and trucks in the driveway.  Today it was as clear as the skies.

The second image the sun was just hitting the stop sign.  You know the way light will just hit some object in the late afternoon or the early evening, this was a perfect example of that case.  I had no choice but to obey the stop sign and and SHOOT.  SNAP, SNAP went the shutter.

Both images are a wonderful example, of no matter how many times we tread down the same streets, unless we can shake of the mundane and truly see, it would be just another day.  Instead if you can beautiful enlightening moments can occur.

Door Mailbox Window Squared

Stop ! Walk ! 止まり 歩く

Kasai Me on a Sunny Saturday

Saturday, May 8th, 2010

Got to chat with some of the owners of the properties I was photographing today.  I always feel like I have been busted when I get asked questions about what I am taking pictures of.

One older lady tried to give me the chairs I was photographing.  I politely said not thank you,  In front of the rusted out stairs the man drove up in his van.  I told him I liked the old building, he then preceded to tell me of an old house in the neighborhood, which it turned out I already knew.

All and all a beautiful sunny day in Kasai.

Trio Umbrellas

Stairs to Roped Off Apartments

Tricylcle and Two Chairs

Young Tomatoes and Single Umbrella

A Knob, and a Rusty Tag

Thursday, April 22nd, 2010

The weather headed back into the chills today.  The mercury dropped again, the wind and the rain returned with a vengeance.  Now sitting cozily in my room, sorting though some pics, I came across a few little images to bring joy into my life, while I await this spring that is suppose to be here.

Fish Door Knob Window

No or On

Rusty Tag, Noze

Saturday Stroll though the Park

Sunday, April 4th, 2010

The weather was gorgeous yesterday.  The sun shone brightly in the sky and it seems like my entire neighborhood headed to the park to bask in the sun and soak up the cherry blossoms.  As we walked arounf the park I couldn’t help but remember that the only reason we have this lovely park is because of the godzilla sized power lines that run the entire length of the park.

So there we are enjoying the “great outdoors” with fragments of the urban world invading our space.  But like I have said to others before, it is better to have some open space in the city, rather than none at all.  So if you can, get out there and enjoy the few urban natural spaces.  Let them be a place where community can come together and pursue peaceful pleasures.

Reality of my Surroundings

Where the Lanterns Are

Two Buds Sitting in a Tree

Picture Perfect

Napping Under the Blosson on a Hill

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