Despite being 90 and still running her half-century old suburban sweet shop, this lovely lady somehow seemed as happy as the day she first opened it all those years ago.
Food and Drink
For years now I’ve been semi-regularly passing by, and invariably through, Shinjuku’s famous Omoide Yokocho, or Piss Alley as it’s also known. Most of the time there’s nobody of interest to photograph, but now and again a scene or someone in particular stands out and I attempt to get a shot. Efforts that have resulted in a growing number of images, and these monochrome suited ones make up a small series of sorts — one that hopefully captures some of the alley’s atmosphere and character. Or perhaps more accurately, former atmosphere and character, as the huge increase in visitors to Japan over the last few years has understandably changed the area somewhat.
Now, whether that change has been good or bad is debatable. Yes, it’s not quite like it was, but at the same time it could also be argued that the drinking spot’s renewed popularity has allowed it to survive in a city that demolishes and rebuilds both regularly, and unemotionally. It should also be noted that some of the photos have been taken fairly recently, so in many ways it’s still the same, it’s just different that’s all.
Should you wish to see more photos of Japanese bars (and drinkers), these and many of others can be seen on my portfolio site, here.
At the height of his alcohol-fuelled feelings of complete and utter invincibility, this fella’s last can — a cheap and cheerful chu-hi — must have seemed like an absolutely fantastic idea. But, due to either a very early start, or an impressively late finish, its only effect seems to have been to quickly summon an embarrassingly public, mid-afternoon slumber.
Should you wish to see more photos of similarly inebriated Japanese drinkers, an ever-growing set of them can be seen here.
Bars, of course, are almost always pleasant places to be, but Japan’s standing bars in particular are more than a little special. Mostly used as pitstops for a very quick bit of food and booze, the resultant flow of customers makes them absolutely perfect for people watching. Then add to that their rough and ready nature, and it’s a match made in a very hazy heaven.