A wonderfully old and traditional Tokyo shoe shop

Tokyo’s many glitzy emporiums offer all the brands it’s possible to think of — and many more it’s not. But for real character, and a glimpse of how Tokyo once was (and to a certain extent still is), the city’s old and family run shops are far more interesting, if not exactly fashionable.

an old Tokyo shoe shop

A bonsai master

It’s possible I don’t have the patience, and definite I don’t have the skills, but it’s still hard to imagine a job that appears more relaxing, and bequeaths its bearers with more beauty, than that of a bonsai master.

Japanese bonsai master

A tattoo, beers and banging tunes

Tokyo is hot and humid every summer, but this year is going to be a stinker, with power saving setsuden setting the agenda. A situation that means many workplaces are now sticky and uncomfortable sweat-boxes, and the once soothingly baltic climes of a convenience are now barely cool.

However, while escape from the heat is hard to find, it can at least be countered, and some tunes and a beer or two isn’t a bad way of going about it.

A Japanese woman in Harajuku’s Yoyogi park

Tokyo Times slight summer slowdown

Tomorrow, I shall be leaving these fair isles for the far cooler, if not exactly fairer, ones of home. A journey that will see me knee deep in Guinness, pies and the odd plate of fish and chips for the best part of 6 weeks.

But that’s not to say that the site will simply cease to function like the fella below. No, far from it. There’ll just be something of a slowdown that’s all. So, instead of the usual 4 or 5 posts a week, there’ll be a more relaxed and suitably summery 2. These will more than likely be posted on Mondays and Thursdays (although there will be one this Friday), but to be sure of new content to see, subscribing to the Tokyo Times RSS Feed could well be the way to go. Or alternatively, links to new posts will also appear on my Twitter page.

Tokyo sleeper