So I find myself again in the heart of the bustling metropolitan machine that is Tokyo. It always strikes me as amazing- even as a return visitor many times over- that there can be such a volume of people and machines and buildings folded into such a compact area. But the result is not squalor, as surely as would happen if a similar situation were to be found in the U.S. Instead, the feeling is as though each person, delivery truck, apartment building and street lamp is part of an intricate construction, like the circuit board of an immense electronic device. I guess we are the particles of dust on the circuit board.
Some observations on the way here.
- Early airport shuttles are the worst. My driver arrived 20 mins. late yesterday morning (5 a.m.) while it was raining. What blew me away is that he actually complained that I was not out there 10 minutes ago, because he was "just up the street and calling my phone." Ok. One, I most certainly was out there waiting for his tardy self 10 minutes ago- as I had been for the 15 minutes before that. I'm sorry if I can't stand in the rain waiting for you. Two, it was raining. Does he expect me to walk up and down the street searching for the van? I think the way it works is that YOU find ME, my friend. I regret paying tip in advance.
- Next time I'm going to go through customs with a shirt that says "ME AMERICAN." They keep trying to get me to go through the domestic arrivals line.
- Why do Japanese office buildings have gigantic, non-reflective windows? I feel like I'm looking into an ant colony when we pass them on the freeway. Strangely, the residential buildings generally have very tiny windows in comparison.
- As one sign read: "Family Mart / TOBACCO AND LIQUOR." Come on kids- Daddy's gonna git loaded!
I have a direct line of sight to Mt. Fuji. Fantastic.
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