Reflecting on Culture & Patterns in Japan

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I’m excited to go to Osaka since I haven’t been there in 10 years.  I can’t wait to explore another part of Japan.  It will be nice to take the Shinkansen ride down there.  I enjoy watching Japan country side pass by at 320 kilometers an hour.

Jiyugaoka

Jiyugaoka

I was sad to see my local 7-Eleven closed.  The one thing I really love about Japan is routine.  I’m the type of person that doesn’t mind eating the same meal every day for a week.  I love that when you go into a shop you know exactly what to expect.   I can plan out what I want to buy before I even get to the store.  I know they will have the exact sandwiches and the exact vegetable sticks with miso dip I want.  I don’t get surprised or disappointed.  It’s a very predictable experience.  Perhaps that removes some of the excitement of exploring new things but it also brings a comfort and routine to the process.  I think this is one thing that takes people a while to get about Japan.

Tokyo 7-Eleven

Tokyo 7-Eleven

Thankfully this being Tokyo I only had to walk a couple of blocks to find the new 7-Eleven that popped up to take it’s place.  Even the staff are the same.  They just moved to the new store. It is stocked with all of my favorite items all located in more or less the same spot as the previous store.  No surprises.  I know what I will get.

The latest count has 19,244 7-Eleven Stores in Japan.   To put that number into context there are 8,563 7-Eleven Stores in the United States.  Japan is roughly the size of California but since there are lots of mountains the population is concentrated on about 27% of the land. That makes for a lot of 7-Elevens in a small space.

Tokyo 7-Eleven

Tokyo 7-Eleven

Yutenji Street

Yutenji Street

I think my local clinic gets their design inspiration from Miami Vice…

Kimura Clinic

Kimura Clinic

Jiyugaoka

Jiyugaoka

I always love reading this gym’s sign as I pass.  It is starting to motivate me to want to start boxing.  I wish I had time in my life for exercise. The sign has reasonable English for Japan.

Jiyugaoka Boxing Gym

Jiyugaoka Boxing Gym

I’m still fascinated with this bar near my house.  One day I’ll stop in and have a drink.  It was a Daihatsu Delivery Truck repair shop that they converted into a bar.  It’s decorations are a random mix of things.  The entire place is very random.  It is never crowded.  This business just doesn’t make sense to me.  That makes it interesting.

Jiyugaoka Bar

Jiyugaoka Bar

They have been slowly tearing down the building around my local Yakitori Shop.   I don’t know if he realized how in danger his building is.  Sadly he will be getting pushed out soon.

Jiyugaoka Suzuki Yakitori

Jiyugaoka Suzuki Yakitori

Old Tokyo House

Old Tokyo House

Jiyugaoka

Jiyugaoka

I hope Starbucks converts more of their stores to Coffee and Neighborhood themed shops.  I really like this but I do think they need a few more food selections.  In keeping it pretentious they lack selection so while I go there for coffee but I don’t for food.   I hope this changes.

Starbucks Coffee and Neighborhood

Starbucks Coffee and Neighborhood

…it looks like they will have some competition soon which is good as we need more good coffee shops in Jiyugaoka.

Sunset Coffee Jiyugaoka

Sunset Coffee Jiyugaoka

Jiyugaoka

Jiyugaoka

Toronomon

Toronomon

Spring has come to Tokyo…kind of.

Roppongi Hills

Roppongi Hills

Roppongi Hills

Roppongi Hills

Today’s Configuration: Leica MP with a Summilux 35mm f/1.4 on Portra 160 film.

Dave Powell
Dave Powell is a photographer based in Tokyo, Japan who shoots with a Leica M9. He is the publisher of ShootTokyo, a friendly daily photography blog which he calls a "labor of love." You can follow him on Twitter @ShootTokyo and visit his photo blog site at http://www. shoottokyo.com.
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One Response to Reflecting on Culture & Patterns in Japan

  1. Nihonkai June 14, 2017 at 1:53 am #

    Super valuable post Dave, Japan has many cultural things to explore and everything gives pleasure once you start learning more and more about the country.

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