Foxtrotting around Asukayama

| Apr 29, 2012

Foxtrotting around Asukayama

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Rising amid flat farmland, Asukayama had long been an untended haunt of foxes and their small prey when, in 1720, Yoshimune Tokugawa, the eighth shogun to rule in Edo (present-day Tokyo), had the hilly upland planted with 1,200 cherry trees, 100 maples and 100 ...

Plum nuts about Ikegami

| Mar 25, 2012

Plum nuts about Ikegami

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Whether you call the Prunus mume a plum or an apricot (it is related to both), the flowers are plum elegant on their leafless, shiny branches and help cheer us through winter’s finale. To enjoy them to the full, I seek out Ikegami Baien ...

Shooting galleries in Nihonbashi

| Jul 31, 2011

Shooting galleries in Nihonbashi

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Summertime, and the living’s less easy than queasy as Tokyo’s temperatures and humidity soar. It’s like that as I exit the Hibiya Line’s Kodenmacho Station, in Chuo Ward, headed for Jisshi Koen, the area’s sole park. My plan is to walk northeast, to the ...

Casting around in Tsukudajima

| May 29, 2011

Casting around in Tsukudajima

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From Tsukishima Station on Tokyo’s Oedo subway line, I launch myself northward toward Tsukudajima. A mere sandbar in the early days of the Edo Period (1603-1868), Tsukudajima long ago began to be expanded with boulders and landfill on the way to creating the area ...

Gaming Moto Azabu

| Apr 24, 2011

Gaming Moto Azabu

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Rather than dwell on the dark side of life at this time, I decide to get my game on by heading to a store just off Azabu-Juban’s main shopping street in central Tokyo’s Minato Ward. Max Game, at the foot of Kurayamizaka (Dark Slope), ...

Notes from the underground

| Feb 27, 2011

Notes from the underground

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When my yoga class was canceled recently, I decided to explore Yoga instead. Yoga, in southwestern Tokyo’s Setagaya Ward, was once a post stop on the old Oyama-Kaido pilgrims’ road between the shoguns’ capital of Edo (now Tokyo) and temples in the Mount Oyama ...