Older, more rundown Tokyo, is what interests me the most, but now and again a nod to modernity isn’t such a bad thing. Cruising down the river on a sunny day isn’t such a bad way to spend the afternoon either.
The elderly in Tokyo are a hardy bunch, with a good number still working, let alone simply getting out and about. But in rural Japan, that toughness is taken to a whole new level, with backbreaking, physical work still done despite advancing years. Amazingly it’s work that’s done with a smile as well.
With all its people and interesting places, Tokyo is a wonderful city to live in. At the same time, however, all those people and the increasingly concrete landscape can become wearing. A sense of fatigue that a trip to the countryside can fortunately help fix. And while there are still reminders of more urban areas, the sense of space and lack of people is surprisingly liberating.
Even trains, that constant in Tokyo, are a refreshing sight. They are small, almost laughably infrequent, and yet rather luxuriously are still lacking in passengers. Plus as an added bonus they reflect nicely in rice fields, which in the city at least is an incredibly rare treat.