Friday, July 31, 2009

I now lives in Ikebukuro!

Moved in. And now to continue unpacking and reorganizing...

Friday, July 17, 2009

Tokyo side streets

Walking through some not-so-crowded area of Tokyo.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

The Sony Building (Ginza)

In a large city there are a lot of famous things. There are traditional cultural places, local foods and celebrities, historic sites and more. Tokyo is of course no exception to this. I work twice a week in Ginza, a well-known and hyper-expensive shopping district. There are several awesome places in Ginza (I'll discuss this later when I start to outline some great places in Tokyo), but perhaps the most famous is the Sony building. Inside it's a great place to visit as a tourist or to kill some time if you're around and have a little, but my favorite is the outdoor display.

It's actually only a few buildings down from my work. Next to the building on the corner of a massive intersection is a display area where they set up all kinds of interesting outdoor stuff. It seems wholly incongruent that an electronics company would put nature displays up but I think that's part of the charm of Japanese culture. Here it isn't a mismatch.

In winter they imported a lot of snow from Hokkaido for the display. As I'm from Michigan it was unremarkable and I didn't take a photo, but the Tokyo-ites were all around the snow like they'd never seen it before. As a matter of fact, it does snow in Tokyo but the more recent increases in population have been affecting the local weather and snow has become infrequent. There's rarely any snow buildup anymore. Still, it was nice to see some imported snow.

Before the re-release of Final Fantasy VII Advent Children there were huge billboards in various places. I snapped a photo with my phone because I thought it was interesting.
That was over ten feet tall. I think I got a photo on one of the last days. ^_^;

Over the next few months there were several displays there, ranging from live performers, advertisements for new product campaigns, a Christmas tree and others. I didn't take photos of them but they were exceptionally well-crafted.

In May there was a nice surprise waiting for me. When I turned the corner I saw a spray of sunflowers. I forget where they came from, but it was awesome.

It's nice to see a little nature in the midst of the concrete sometimes.

And I think they believe so too. For June they brought in a garden complete with signs to please come up and enjoy it by walking through it.
I didn't have the courage to go up an walk through since nobody else was, plus I was in a hurry to head somewhere.

Monday before work I noticed a UNICEF ad. Apparently there'll be people there this weekend, but this is the stage.

Most of the displays are imported from somewhere kind of far away. It's almost gimmicky but I think it's great. Haven't figured out the schedule yet, but I think the displays are up for a week or two usually. The snow may have been around for less, but as I don't usually walk past the Sony building on a normal day I don't know. In any case it's a fun little addition when I do walk over there.