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Showing posts from November, 2017

Kusuo Yasuda House and Garden in Sendagi

Not entirely sure I should write about this house, because I suspect the Lonely Planet hordes haven't discovered it yet, and if there's one thing we have enough of in Tokyo right now, it's tourists. Let me reiterate: I have nothing against solitary travelers [hello, self!] or small groups. I do loathe, with an exponentially growing intensity, tour buses vomiting forth one obnoxious group after the other.
God help the Former Kusuo Yasuda House and Garden, to give it its full English name, if those buses ever arrive.
The house is a Japan National Trust for Cultural and Natural Heritage Conservation property, and I'm going to plagiarize / summarize shamelessly from their brochure:
"Located in the quiet Sendagi residential district, the house survived both the 1923 Great Kanto Earthquake and the WWII air-raid bombings. The house was built in 1919 for Yoshisaburo Fujita, a connoisseur of traditional architecture. He sold the house in 1923 to Zenshiro Yasuda. When the latt…

Permanent residency ᕕ( ᐛ )ᕗ

I’ve been granted permanent residency in Japan. This morning – 10 years and 11 months after I arrived here with a work permit, and 5 months and 2 weeks after I'd applied for it – I collected my permanent residency card at Immigration in Shinagawa. 
Epic journey halfway around our globe, this, and it's ... ironic? Freudian? immaterial? ... that my trip to Shinagawa included all my petty irritations about my new permanent home. Gobs of spit on the road to the station, a pool of vomit in front of a Korean restaurant, commuter train jam-packed with sniffing men (and I'd like to point out yet again that we're talking about uvula-rattling snot avalanches, not delicate sniffs into lace handkerchiefs). The guy who stopped in front of me at a red light had his finger halfway up his nose. What is it with gold-digging in this country?  I waited at the relevant counter at Immigration. There were about 100 people in line. Every hue of black and brown; only two of us melanin-deficient.…

I am an indescribable emotional peanut armed with anger

You should never probe too deeply what Japan thinks of Africa. I recently made the mistake of searching for Africa-themed stamps on LINE, Japan's equivalent of WhatsApp. This is what I found.

"I am from South Africa of Algeria. I am an indescribable emotional peanut armed with anger." That's going to be my standard excuse for everything henceforthwith.